History of Smith Lake

Sipsey Fork 1960

Lewis Smith Lake Was built in the late 50’s by Alabama Power and directed by the Corp of Engineers. The property that was purchased to build the lake consisted of over 22 thousand acres. This property, at one time was an Indian territory. Many caves are still there and artifacts are still being found. The wildlife consists of deer, wild turkey, beaver, raccoons, fox, eagles and many more. The William Bankhead National Forest covers much of the lake. Their are three national parks for camping and over night stays Corinth National Park, Houston Recreation Park, and Fall City Park. Their are also county parks and that is Smith Lake Park located on the Cullman side, and RV Parks Smith Lake Park ( Cullman Side ), Duncan Bridge ( Winston Co Side ), and Arrowhead Park ( Cullman Side )

Above Lewis Smith Dam 1961

The lake’s original purpose for being built was for flood control. Many of the surrounding small towns were being flooded during the Winter & Spring rains. It was designed to keep flood control as the #1 purpose, secondary purpose was to have year round navigation on the Mulberry Black Warrior River that goes to the Gulf of Mexico, also to have cold water to cool Gorgas Steam Plant.

Lewis Smith Dam

Many functions have evolved  from the makeup of Smith Lake. Such as new home building, fishing, boating, skiing, hiking. Many different types of vacationing weekend retreat RV resorts, fishing tournaments which all has created multi-million taxes and many jobs to this great area.


Smith Lake is the THIRD CLEANEST LAKE in the USA behind Lake Taho, and the Hoover Dam Lake Mead.