Beaver Dam Lake – History & Overview
In the late 1800’s dams were constructed on the river running through Beaver Dam to provide power for sawmills. Flooding destroyed the original dams which were rebuilt and provided power for flour and woolen mills. The present dam was built in 1913-14 and was used as a source of power until 1934. Improvements have kept the dam functional in its use for water level management. This is controlled by the City of Beaver Dam working within DNR regulations.
The lake is a valuable resource for tourism and recreation as well as residential use. There are over 800 parcels on Beaver Dam Lake and the lake community is home to over 1,400 residents, many year round. The 21 islands provide opportunities for duck hunting and fishing and recreational sports continue to be popular ways to use the lake.
Over the years various groups have worked with the DNR to face challenges to the lake - rough fish, freeze-outs, non-point pollution, invasive species and erosion. Efforts to control and resolve these issues have had varying degrees of success and continue to affect lake quality. The Lake District, organized and approved in 2020 is authorized by the State of Wisconsin under Statute protection and guidance to manage lake quality and provide financial support from all properties located on the lake.