Thursday, June 28, 2012

Maple Sink Lake

 I guess with the heat and drought that we are experiencing, the thought of cool wet water has me remembering some special areas in the county that were known for their water.

Maple Sink Lake, once a popular local and tourist area, is now just a large lake. It is one of two naturally formed lakes that I know of in Crittenden County, and it covers about 400 acres.  It is located between Caldwell Springs Road and Main Lake Road in the Frances area of Crittenden County.  The picture above was made in 2008 from the Main Lake Road side of the lake.

The history of the large lake is that it was formed around 1887 as a result of a large sinkhole filling up and failing to permit drainage of the several hundred acres of farm land surrounding it.  The sinkhole, it was thought, led to an underground stream which carried the water to the Cumberland River.

The hole was filled, after a nearby barn burned and its remains were dumped into it.  Because of the number of Maple thickets in the area, the barn rubbish and now clogged with leaves, until finally  drainage of the farm land ceased.  Following a rainy season, Maple Sink Lake was created covering a large area.  

The picture above was made from the Caldwell Springs Road side of the lake.

During the 1950's a fishing resort/camp sprang up in the area with a pretty active tourist business.  People from surrounding states would come with the camping trailers and stay for days at a time, camping, fishing and just enjoying the beautiful lake and quite countryside.  A woman at one time that everyone called "Ma Davis" ran the fishing camp, where you could buy fishing supplies and rent your area to camp.  

The old homeplace of Ma Davis is gone now, torn down, and the lake is just a thing that's there. Although the lake has grown and changed through the years since its beginning, folks don't seem to talk much about it anymore,  It used to be a special place that people drove for miles around to see and enjoy, and sense the mystery of how such a large lake could be formed from the clogging up of an old sinkhole.    One of Crittenden County's hidden treasurers.


bsdubois said...

I glad I found this site. We live near the West Side of Evansville, IN. I remember my parents telling me stories of traveling to Maple Sinks to fish. This was in the early 1950's.


Brían S. Du Bois

Kathy Travis said...

I own some of the lake and lived there for 42 years. It is a beautiful, natural lake. I never plan to commercialize it.Fishing is now free.

All American Aussies said...

I used to go to the camping area with my parents and grandparents. I was very young, but old enough to remember how special those times were. My family always had fun and ALWAYS caught fish. Please contact me and let me know if it is possible to still fish at Maple Sink. Thanks for the best memories!