IMPORTANT UPDATE: The dam is open. It has been reported to
the Association that the drainpipe in the dam has been opened. Be aware
of low water levels and use caution in shallow areas.
and preserving the ecological and recreational balance of Quaddick Lake.
Reservoir is nestled in the northeast corner of Connecticut —
near the Rhode Island and Massachusetts borders — in the town
of Thompson. The village of Quaddick began as a mixture of farming and
small industry. The industry, run by water power, grew up along the
Five Mile River, with the farms populating the outside areas. Prior to
the Civil War, Quaddick included such industries as a grist mill, a hat
manufacturer, a sawmill (which later became a twine mill) along with
farms, a school and a tavern.
With the advent of the Civil
need for more industry developed however the rather sluggish Five Mile
River was no longer able to keep up with the expanding demand. In order
to harness and control the water power of the Five Mile, a partnership
of five gentlemen from eastern Connecticut decided to build a dam at
the northern end of the river. In 1864, they began buying land
surrounding the river and, between 1864 and 1875, the flowage rights
from 63 people were bought at prices ranging from $35 to $9,500. The
location of the dam was decided to be at the north side of the
Providence to Springfield Turnpike. The dam was started in 1865 and
finished in 1867. It created the eight mile long Quaddick reservoir
behind the dam, a small mill pond in front of the dam and two
spillways. The water from this new lake was able to power at least
seven mills running along the river from Quaddick south to Danielson.
As the industrial revolution continued into the early 1900's, Quaddick
Lake was also heavily used as a source of power as well as water for
processing textile materials in the plants in Killingly.*
after its creation, local residents began building summer
fishing cottages and year-round homes on the lake to take advantage of
its spectacular tree-lined views, swimming in the cool reservoir,
boating on its nearly 2 miles of open water and some of the best
fishing in New England.
1951, Quaddick was
designated a state park after originally being developed as a Forestry
recreation area. The site of the state park was originally a fishing
area of the Nipmuck Indians and then was Thompson's town farm where
elderly residents of the village spent their reflective years.
Association (referred to as the ‘Association’) is
comprised of the residents who live year-round and seasonally on the
407.5-acre, 2.5 mile lake. The Association is dedicated to conserving
the public benefit the natural beauty, recreational character and
unique resource values of the lake and its surrounding area. In
cooperation with local and state authorities and other conservation
organizations, the Association promotes the protection, careful use and
shared enjoyment of the lake, adjoining open spaces and wildlife so it
will continue to be a cherished asset to the community.
Photos from Around
Quaddick Lake E-mail System
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Courtesy of the Thompson Historical Society. www.thompsonhistorical.org/