Colorado Water History
Dot Carpenter: The Woman Behind the Man
It is said that behind every great man is a great woman. Delph Carpenter, “Father of Interstate River Compacts,” found greatness through working tirelessly—even when increasingly ill—ably aided by his wife, Dot.
Born Ann Michaela Hogarty in 1878 to Union Colony pioneers, the woman later known as “Dot” married Carpenter in 1901. She spent much of the next fifty years assisting her husband, giving him love, support and basic care as his disabilities intensified. Dot’s contributions in this and in his professional work were vital to Delph’s accomplishments.
Dot’s experiences as daughter and sister prepared her to be Delph’s wife and the mother of his children. At a time when women working outside the home was less common, Dot embraced caring for her family and participating in her community.
In this virtual exhibit, Dot Carpenter’s life is examined in association with just a few of the people who influenced her. Among other achievements, Dot's legacy is reflected in the western water law contributions made by her husband and son, who were so affected by her faithful, supportive, cheerful nature.
Scroll through the gallery to learn more about Dot, and find additional resources at the bottom of the page.
Note: this virtual exhibit was created in 2006 and updated in 2022.
This exhibit features items from the Papers of Delph E. Carpenter and Family, a collection in the Water Resources Archive. Each gallery item includes a link to the uncropped version. For more information, see the collection finding aid or browse and search digitized objects from the collection. Also see the virtual exhibit Carpenter and the Compacts.
For more information about the Carpenter family, see Daniel Tyler’s biography of Delph Carpenter, Silver Fox of the Rockies: Delphus E. Carpenter and Western Water Compacts.
Also view family trees: