Town History

Local History - Swansea Dam

From Swansea Cable Access Television, November 30th, 2016
"The Swansea Dam is now flowing with water. Since the construction of the new dam, there has been a drought of water and the dam has been dry... not anymore."

The following images and local history were graciously provided by John Ploude, grandson of Alfred Damas who rebuilt the Swansea Dam around 1957. The dam was originally constructed around 1906.

Alfred at the dam Meet Alfred Damas from Somerset, MA. Alfred was born in 1906. He had a 200 acre farm that went from the top of Whetstone Hill Road down to the banks of the Taunton River. Unfortunately he lost it all in the depression. He later moved to Read Street in Somerset where he lived out the rest of his life. He worked for Montaup Electric. And he built the Swansea Dam, as we know it today, with his bare hands and the help of a few others. Alfred passed away in 1976.

Alfred building



"In 1957, the Montaup Electric Company bought the rights for the dam because of a drought year. The intention was to create a scenic view for the community with the dam. Lead Stone Mason Alfred Damas of Somerset along with 32 college students from the local area worked on the dam and the surrounding area."

Dam construction

Alfred on tractor

Alfred on tractor


The dam in 2016, prior to restoration

Fun at the Dam
(Photo from the Herald News archives)

Finishing the Dam
(Photo from the Herald News)


Swansea Dam Restoration - 2016

On time, on budget and complete, a perfect combination for Swansea Dam (Herald News 7/25/16)

Swansea Dam closing in on completion ahead of June 30 deadline (Herald News 5/20/16)

Swansea Dam motto: Dry and Beautiful (Herald News 4/22/16)

Swansea Dam : Men at work (Herald News 4/22/16)

Swansea dam problems lead to a dam fix (Herald News 4/22/16)

Swansea dam reconstruction bid awarded (Herald News 3/11/16)

Contractors meet at dam (Spectator 2/19/16)

Swansea Dam work presented (SouthCoast Today 10/22/15)

Town receives grant for Swansea Dam work (Spectator 10/21/15)