US Army Corps at Brookville Reservoir
Come visit Brookville Lake and enjoy Corps lands & waters today!
Did you know that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is the largest federal provider of outdoor and water-based recreation? The Corps hosts more than 350 million visitors per year from 456 lakes and river projects that exist in 43 states. Corps lands and water, amounting to approximately 12 million acres, provide more than 5,000 miles of hiking trails, 3800 boat launch ramps, 400 miles of coastal structures, 900 harbors, 275 locks, 8,500 miles of levees, 600 dams, 8,800 stream or environmental gauging stations and 33% of all U.S. freshwater fishing. Camping under the stars at one of our 90,000 sites is sure to provide an enjoyable outdoor adventure.
Right here in Indiana, one has access to 11 Corps properties: Brookville Lake, Cagles Mill Lake, Cannelton Lock and Dam, Cecil M. Harden Lake, J. Edward Roush Lake, John T. Myers Lock and Dam, Mississinewa Lake, Monroe Lake, Newburgh Lock and Dam, Patoka Lake and Salamonie Lake. These USACE (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers) projects are part of the Louisville District and the Great Lakes & Ohio River Division. Visit the Division’s website or the Louisville District’s website to learn more information about these projects near you. Click for Brookville Lake’s website for the Corps.
For over 200 years, the Corps has served the nation with programs such as waterway navigation, flood water control/protection/reduction, disaster assistance, hydroelectric power generation, water supply, environmental restoration and protection, outdoor recreation and military support. The Natural Resource mission is to manage and conserve those natural resources, consistent with ecosystem management principles, while providing quality public outdoor recreation experiences to serve the needs of present and future generations.
Area History and Features of Brookville Lake
Brookville Lake lies in the heart of the Whitewater River Valley. This area has long been acknowledgedas one of the most picturesque and historically significant in the State of Indiana. The earliest settlers of the region encountered several Indian tribes, notably the Miami, the Delaware, and the Illinois. The hills and valleys along the Whitewater River were favorite resorts for hunting. However, the Indians abandoned their claims on much of the region as early as 1795, following the signing of the Treaty of Greenville.
During the next decade, the Whitewater Valley was settled in earnest. Attracted by the pure abundant water and the rich, level river bottoms, ideally suited for farming, a constant stream of settlers found their way up the Whitewater Valley from Kentucky and Ohio. Many of the family names of the early pioneers have been permanently fixed to the landmarks and cities of the area, including the towns of Connersville and Dunlapsville, as well as Templeton and Hanna Creeks.
The town of Brookville was officially born in 1808. During the early expansion days, Brookville became the cultural and political center of Indiana. During the period from 1825 to 1840, every Governor of Indiana called Brookville his home. However, following the transfer of the State Land Office from Brookville to Indianapolis in the 1820’s, the growth and development of the Whitewater Valley slowed.
In 1834, the construction of the Whitewater Canal was initiated. Running a total length of 101 miles, the Canal was the most important means of transportation of the period.
Partnerships & Recreation Facilities
The recreation facilities at the lake are operated and maintained by the State of Indiana Department of Natural Resources (IDNR), with the exception of the Dam, Tailwater and Overlook Recreation Areas, which the Corps operates and maintains. Recreation facilities include beaches, boat ramps, campgrounds, fishing piers, an 18-hole golf course, hiking trails, lodging, marinas, picnic areas, playgrounds, restaurant, shooting & archery ranges and a tailwater trout fishing area. Visit the state’s website for more information.
Want to volunteer? Many volunteer opportunities exist. Please contact either the Corps or DNR to get started today.