The labor contract to build the Hoover Dam was huge in its day.
This was back in the 1930’s.
They started to build the dam in 1931 and it was completed more than two years ahead of schedule in 1936.
Are you sitting down?
The consortium of companies that built the dam didn’t have to pay for the materials.
The Federal Government contracted separately to do that.
The contractors just had to supply the labor.
The labor contract was $57,000,000.
Today, in 2015, that would probably not even pay for the engineering studies, environmental study, etc.
Hells bells, you wouldn’t even be allowed to build that dam today because you might kill a turtle.