Conneaut Lake Borough, Crawford County

July 25th, 2023

The borough of Conneaut Lake is located at the southwestern shore of Conneaut Lake in Crawford County and is home to over 625 residents.

Originally named Evansburg, after founder by Abner Evans in 1793. Evans began his gristmill business in 1795, and soon after, other sawmills and carding mills were established. Then, in 1892, the town name was changed to Conneaut Lake, as it more reflected the name most commonly-used to describe the town and the area. In 1886 Channellock. Inc., a producer and global distributor of quality hand tools, began its operations in the area and currently employs more than 350 associates.

The lake itself is the largest natural lake in Pennsylvania and was created approximately twelve thousand years ago by glacial ice which geological experts believe may have been as much as a mile thick. Conneaut Lake spans 929 acres, is three miles in length, and a mile across at its widest point, with the deepest part measuring 75 ft.

Conneaut Lake was named by the people of the Seneca Nation. The native word Conneaut (“kon-ne-ot”) means "snow waters" reflecting what the Seneca witnessed as winter was transitioning to spring, and the ice and snow on the lake remained after already melting on land.

The lake provided a key natural resource significantly contributing to the economy of the area for a period of time spanning almost five decades. As found on, in 1880, the Conneaut Lake Ice Company was founded. During the early 1900s and until the 1930s, ice from the lake was harvested and stored in huge ice houses at the south end of the lake. From there, the ice was shipped regularly to many towns and cities, both large and small. It is believed that in some years more than 100,000 tons were harvested.

Conneaut Lake Park is a summer resort and event venue located on the shores of the lake. The park has been a regional tourist destination for many years and is known for the Blue Streak roller coaster, which was classified as “historic” in 2010. Boating is a popular recreation on the lake as well. Fireman’s Beach has both boat and kayak launches, parking, swimming lessons and snack stand. In winter months, there is ice-fishing, snowmobiling, and 4-wheeling.

With it being a great place to visit for bit of history, experience ice-fishing, take a sail on the “Barbara J.” Paddleboat, or walk along the newly created lake-side promenade, visiting the Borough of Conneaut Lake should be on your radar.

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Photographs by Bill Eldridge