C.J. Brown Dam & Reservoir

2630 Croft Rd.
Springfield, OH  45503-2515
(937) 325-2411
Office hours: 

The Visitor Center is open Monday through Friday 8:00 am until 3:00 pm.

Beginning April 15th, the Visitor Center will be open daily 8:00 am until 3:00 pm. 

America the Beautiful passes are being sold/issued ONLY by appointment.  Please call the office at 937-325-2411 to arrange any AtB pass appointments.

Pass sales will be Credit Card only.


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Welcome to the C. J. Brown Dam and Reservoir website. The lake is located near Springfield in west central Ohio, less than a day's drive from Indianapolis, Cleveland, Louisville or Toledo.

The 2,120 acre lake provides flood reduction and a whole lot more. The C. J. Brown Region offers many opportunities to enjoy wildlife or recreate in the great outdoors. The menu on the right leads to specific recreation and other lake information.

C. J. Brown exists as a cooperative management effort between the Corps of Engineers and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources - Divisions of Parks and Recreation and Natural Areas and Preserves. In addition, one private non-profit organization, Clark County Historical Society, plays an important role at the park.


The Louisville District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers designed, built, and operates C. J. Brown Dam and Reservoir. The lake serves as one unit of the comprehensive plan for the Ohio River Basin to reduce flood stages downstream from the dam. The lake provides water supply storage and operates to increase natural low-flow conditions downstream of the dam in the interest of water quality control. The Corps of Engineers conducts an active natural resource management program to preserve natural areas and to provide suitable habitat for native fish and wildlife. Many recreational opportunities abound.

During the fall and winter months, the lake is kept at a relatively low level referred to as winter pool. Should heavy rains occur, surface water runoff is stored in the lake until the swollen streams and rivers below the dam have receded and can handle the release of the stored water without damage to lives or property.


C.J. Brown, Sr., for whom the lake was named, was born in Clinton County, Ohio, on July 14, 1895. In 1916, he became State Statistician of Ohio and was publisher of several county newspapers as President of Brown Publishing Company. He served as Ohio Lieutenant Governor from 1919-1923; Secretary of State of Ohio, 1927-1933; and was Republican nominee for Governor in 1934. He served in the U.S. House of Representatives from Jan. 3, 1939, until his death in August 1965. Tribute came from his Democratic and Republican colleagues following his death when a bipartisan resolution was passed in the House of Representatives naming the reservoir in his memory.

C.J. Brown offers a glimpse of the area’s past. The Crabill Homestead, built around 1830, was acquired by the Corps during the acquisition of the land for the construction of the reservoir.

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