Park History 1938-2018

Pleasant Hill Park & Dam (1938-2018)

Pleasant Hill Lake is an 783-acre man made lake located near Perrysville and between Ashland and Richland counties in Ohio. Completed in 1936, Pleasant Hill Dam was built on the Clear Fork of the Mohican River. The dam which forms the lake is a 113 ft (34 m) tall earth-fill dam. It is located in Ashland but the lake extends into Richland. The lake, constructed by the United States Army Corps of Engineers, was built for the purpose of flood control. See video link below for historical footage:

Surrounding Mohican Area History

The erosional forces of the last glacial meltwaters 12,000 years ago hastened the carving of the narrow gorge of the Clear Fork of the Mohican River. This gorge cuts into the sandstone bedrock exposing huge outcroppings and creating steep cliff walls. The gorge is more than one thousand feet wide at the top and over three hundred feet deep. The striking Clearfork Gorge with its towering hemlocks and stands of old-growth white pine are of national significance. The National Park Service has thus dedicated the area as a Registered National Natural Landmark.

The Mohican State Park area was once the hunting grounds of the Delawares, whose more famous warriors included Janacake, Bill Montour, Thomas Lyon, and James Smith, who was the first white man to come to this area. Smith was captured by the Indians and later adopted into their tribe. Several Delaware villages were located in the Mohican vicinity.

Settlement began at the turn of the nineteenth century, but settlement did not increase until the Indians were driven from the area during the War of 1812. John Chapman, immortalized as Johnny Appleseed, frequented the region during the 1800s, caring for his apple tree nurseries. His name and the date, carved in the wall of Lyons Falls, were an attraction for years. Unfortunately, the etchings have been obliterated with the passage of time.

Mohican State Park was originally called Clear Fork State Park when the Ohio Department of Natural Resources was created in 1949 and the park was created from Ohio Division of Forestry lands. In 1966, the name of the park was changed to Mohican to alleviate confusion between Clear Fork Reservoir in Mansfield, Ohio and the state park.

Historical Construction Photos ( 1936-1938)


 Morning Glory Spillway 1937 Construction         Control Gate Tower Construction  1937


Assorted Video Clips



Morning glory spillway overflow at Berryessa Lake in California ( Same design as Pleasant Hill Spillway)

Pleasant Hill's Spillways has never overflowed to date.

Historical Books on Pleasant Hill Dam & Lake Park


The Dam and 50 Years Beyond                Pleasant Hill Lake Park Making Memories- 1938-2018

                                                                     and Beyond

By Lee Cavin                                               By Louis M. Andres & Irv Oslin

Book $6.95         Published 1988                Paperback Book $10.00        Published  2018

Both Books are available for sale through the Park Office, Copies available at local libraries

 Historical Photos of Pleasant  Hill  Park    


Cabin Area 1948                                                               Boat Launch & Marina area 1940's


Boat Concession Building                                            Village of Newville before lake impoundment

MWCD Fire Patrol Plane 1940's

 Historical News Clippings 


  1952 News articles

Historical Map 1915

Employment Opportunties

We issue alerts regarding imminent threats to health and safety, and updates that affect activities or property in and around the lake.