I wasn't aware of this fieldstone dam near the town dump off of Freedom Street
until I was taking pictures of the dump capping job from the other side on April
14, 2013. My son, DJ, was with me and the sound of falling water caused him to
look over there. He pointed it out to me and I zoomed in for this picture. We
couldn't see it nearly as well as you can in the photo. I went back two weeks later
and walked in closer. What you see below is what I took at that time.
The top of the dam is at the bottom middle of this picture.
As you can see, the pond, more of a puddle actually, behind the dam doesn't
amount to much. I presume it must have gone down as far as the bottom of
the dam when if was first built, but has naturally filled in over the years.
The top of the dam is at the left
edge of the water in this picture.
Brook leading into the pond. A Pinecrest house can be seen in the
background. I never knew of this place, but I presume Pinecrest
kids who like to roam the woods have long been aware of it.
If anyone knows why the dam was built, I'd be interested in hearing about it. (Email link on
homepage.) A nineteenth century farm pond, maybe?
was once larger, perhaps twice its present size, and was used for skating by kids from the
Overdale Parkway neighborhood. Changes were made many years ago which cut back the water
level. I think it was done because some of the water would get out onto Freedom Street and
freeze. The house that can be seen at the left side of the upper picture is on Freedom Street. The
pond is circled in green in the Google Earth view. If anyone knows more about this pond, I'd like to
hear that also.
this area as a youngster. My crew of playmates (Bob Lemon and Peter Gibson were a couple of
them)used to spend a lot of time in this area, building huts from dump wood. It was just up the hill
through the woods from the dump. There used to be some heavy (thick) grapevines near it and
we played Tarzan, swinging on them. Right across the dam in fact. Tarzan was in his prime at the
movies in those days. Johnnie Weissmuller was Tarzan and we all wanted to be him, chasing
Jane through the jungle from one vine to the next with Cheetah the monkey in hot pursuit. Guess
we never did catch up with Jane."
pond nearer to the road.
Here's a Google Earth view of the area that DJ sent to me. It was done in 2003
and he sent it because it was taken when there weren't any leaves on the trees.
Ponds appear as dark areas. The pond in the pictures on this page appears to
be the one that I circled in red. You can see the brook that's feeding it entering
from the left and below, and the brook leaving it goes down to a larger stream
that runs along the edge of the dump and Draper Field. Two baseball diamonds
and Pinecrest and Freedom Street houses can also be seen.
In 1933, this area was the scene of the tragedy described in the following
Milford Daily News articles. I first included it on this page, thinking that the
area shown above was about where it had occurred. I later concluded that
it had probably happened on the other side of Freedom Street, in the
Overdale Parkway area.