Nestled in the scenic landscape of Dover, Ohio, the Dover Dam stands as a testament to engineering ingenuity and its role in shaping the region’s history. Constructed during the 1930s, this impressive structure serves multiple purposes, ranging from flood control to water supply and hydroelectric power generation. Let’s explore the Dover Dam and unravel the story behind this vital piece of infrastructure. Sugarcreek, OH be seen at this link.

Historical Context:

The construction of the Dover Dam was initiated as part of the broader effort by the United States government to address flooding issues along the Tuscarawas River. The devastating floods of the early 20th century underscored the need for a comprehensive solution, leading to the inception of the Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District (MWCD) and the eventual construction of the Dover Dam. Information about Unveiling the Unconventional: The Toland-Herzig Famous Endings Museum in Dover, Ohio can be found here. 

Flood Control Measures:

One of the primary functions of the Dover Dam is to control and mitigate the impact of flooding in the Tuscarawas River basin. The dam’s reservoir, known as Dover Lake, has a storage capacity that allows it to regulate water flow during periods of heavy rainfall. 

Water Supply Reservoir:

In addition to flood control, the Dover Dam serves as a vital water supply reservoir for the surrounding region. The stored water in Dover Lake is utilized for various purposes, including agricultural irrigation, municipal water supply, and industrial use. This dual functionality highlights the dam’s integral role in ensuring a sustainable and reliable water source for the local community.

Hydroelectric Power Generation:

Harnessing the power of flowing water, the Dover Dam contributes to the generation of hydroelectric power. The dam’s powerhouse contains turbines that convert the energy of falling water into electricity. 

Structural Design and Features:

The Dover Dam boasts an impressive structural design that reflects the engineering standards of its time. The concrete gravity dam spans the Tuscarawas River, standing at a height of approximately 98 feet and a length of over 500 feet. The dam’s spillway, equipped with gates to regulate water release, allows for precise control over the reservoir’s water levels. The combination of these features ensures the dam’s efficacy in flood control and water management.

Recreational Opportunities:

Beyond its useful functions, the Dover Dam offers recreational opportunities for the local community and visitors. Dover Lake provides a picturesque setting for activities such as fishing, boating, and hiking. The surrounding green spaces and scenic views attract nature enthusiasts, making the dam a multifaceted destination that harmonizes engineering and natural beauty.

Education and Visitor Center:

To further enrich the visitor experience, the Dover Dam features an Education and Visitor Center. This facility serves as an informative hub, offering insights into the dam’s construction, engineering significance, and its impact on the region. Exhibits, interpretive displays, and educational programs provide a comprehensive understanding of the Dover Dam’s role in water management and flood prevention.


The Dover Dam in Dover, Ohio, stands as an enduring symbol of human ingenuity and its ability to shape the landscape for the benefit of communities. From flood control and water supply to hydroelectric power generation, the dam’s multifaceted functions showcase the convergence of engineering and environmental stewardship. As a vital component of the region’s infrastructure, the Dover Dam not only safeguards against natural disasters but also provides a recreational haven and educational resource for those who appreciate its historical and engineering significance.