The consortium that won the 1931 contract to build Hoover Dam, it was composed of Although Wilbur Bechtel was president of the consortium, and Harry Morrison of Morrison-Knudsun suggested the name, the biggest force behind the formation of Six Companies appears to have been engineer Frank Crowe, the man who was eventually made the project's chief of construction.  Crowe had been working for 20 years in the US Bureau of Reclamation and was hot to build a dam on the lower Colorado.  When the Bureau decided to have a private company build the dam, it was Crowe who went to Morrison, who assembled the team.  It was Crowe who calculated the $48.9 million bid that won the contract (the largest government contract awarded up to that time), which just happened to be almost exactly the same amount that the Bureau of Reclamation had estimated the project would cost.

Six Companies wanted to make a profit, and Crowe had to finish the project under budget. They didn't dare cut corners where materials were concerned, but as this was the middle of the Great Depression, with millions out of work, they could cut corners with labor, especially workers' safety. For every man who night have complained about conditions, there were six men hungry to replace him.