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Beebe Lake was once a forested swamp. In 1838, to capture the waterpower of Fall Creek, the first dam was built above Triphammer Falls, which raised the level of Beebe Swamp 18 feet and created Beebe Pond. In 1898, Beebe Lake was formed when the dam was raised another ten feet; the trees in the wetlands surrounding Beebe Pond were cut, and water filled the lowlands. The lake has been dredged several times. The east shore and parts of the south shore of Beebe were created with the spoils from the dredging, while the large gravel island near the inlet was preserved during the restoration. The plantings placed there were predominantly native species.

Learn about the natural and human history of Hemlock Gorge in this short video tour narrated by Gorge Historian Dan McClure.