Carey Land Act, sponsored by Sen. Joseph M. Carey and passed by the U.S. Congress in 1894. The act provided for the transfer to Western states of U.S.-owned desert lands on the condition that they be irrigated. Settlers were permitted to buy up to 160 acres (64.7 hectares) of the land at 50¢ per acre plus the cost of water rights. Hopes that the act would hasten reclamation and settlement were disappointed.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.