Clarksville Town Council Reaffirms Support for Removal of the Providence Mill Dam

Silver Creek Dam

CLARKSVILLE, IN (July 2, 2024) –  The tragic death of a local teen has prompted the Clarksville Town Council to reaffirm its support for the removal of the Providence Mill Dam.  14-year-old Andre “AJ” Edwards, Jr. of Clarksville died from an accidental drowning on Memorial Day.  Witnesses told police Edwards went under water while swimming near the dam and did not resurface.

Andre "AJ" Edwards, Jr.
Andre “AJ” Edwards, Jr.

During its regularly scheduled meeting Tuesday night, the Clarksville Town Council voted unanimously to approve a resolution renewing and reaffirming support for removal of the dam.  The original resolution was passed back in 2021 after the City of New Albany filed a lawsuit against River Heritage Conservancy to prevent the removal of the dam.

River Heritage Conservancy is in the process of developing Origin Park in Southwest Clarksville.  One of the early projects was the creation of a ‘blue way’, a water recreation enhancement for the general public that includes paddling and fishing along a portion of Silver Creek from Blackiston Mill Road bridge to the Ohio River.  River Heritage applied for a permit from the Indiana Department of Natural Resources to remove the dam, after determining the dam posed a safety hazard to the public using the blue way.  River Heritage also claims the dam impacts the water quality for the river system ecology, and that removal of the dam would mitigate those issues.

That permit was subsequently issued, however, the lawsuit filed by the City of New Albany has so far prevented the removal of the dam.  Town leaders say the death of Andre Edwards, Jr. has caused increase concern about the safety hazards surrounding the dam, and the need for it to be removed.  The new resolution reads:

Resolution 2024-R-13 Renewing and Reaffirming Support for Removal of the Providence Mill Dam