Beyond the Surface: Lake Jocassee

When we think about Lake Jocassee we tend to envision the vast blue water, endless views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, numerous waterfalls, and maybe even the gorges and protected forests that surround. 

But did you know that Lake Jocassee is actually a man-made reservoir, and that underneath, homes and structures are still visible?

We forget about what used to be when it was only the Whitewater River flowing and ebbing through Jocassee Valley in its ribbon-like twists. There were homes here. Places of rest. Memories and traditions, such as racing to find the first bloom of the Oconee Bell flower. Children laughing and families gathering.

Built in 1973 by Duke Power, Lake Jocassee was and still is a necessity to fuel local power needs. In fact, just below the dam itself, and deep below it’s depths, is where one stood the town of Keowee. Keowee Town was a Cherokee capital. 

Attakulla Lodge, in particular, holds precious sentiment in this valley. Sitting beneath 300 feet of flowing emerald current, this unwavering structure stands true. It was once a family owned bed and breakfast enjoyed by many travelers passing through the heart of Jocassee Valley, but was eventually closed for private enjoyment meant for the homestead of family and friends. They’d spend their time tubing along the river, chasing after the first blooms, bowling at the neighboring property, enjoying the beauty of it all and making lasting memories.  This family owned property still remains in the depths of the water and in the core of many hearts. 

The Lodge was named after Cherokee Chief Attakullakulla (“Little Carpenter”) who was the father of Princess Jocassee (“Place of the Lost One”) herself! We’ll dive deeper into the Native history of the region in future posts. 

Impressively, since the water is quite frigid in the depths, divers have reported that this home has been exquisitely preserved down to the paint and doorknobs. There is even a preserved book (placed by divers) on the front porch that was written by one of the family members! (“Whippoorwill Farewell: Jocassee Remembered” by Debbie Fletcher) For those daring to discover this now hidden world, look for experienced local scuba diving tours which can give you history and show you interesting places to check out underwater.  

Endless history and unforgettable pasts make up the beauty of what is beyond the surface of Lake Jocassee. From a real estate standpoint, the lake has only a small number of homes along its banks, providing for more secluded living. If interested in Lake Jocassee homes for sale, click here to view our available listings. Due to its close proximity to Lake Keowee, Clemson, and other towns, many wonderful communities are within a stone’s throw of enjoying Lake Jocassee.  Contact our team if you are interested in learning more about the lake and closeby area communities.