John DuBois owned timber tracts in Sandy Township. Because of the Eastern Continental Divide, he was unable to float logs to his mill in Williamsport, as he was doing on the eastern side of the divide.
He envisioned building a huge new sawmill in what would eventually become the city of DuBois. When he heard that the Allegheny Valley Low Grade Railroad intended to construct a railroad over the divide, he laid track known as “the railroad to nowhere” on his land across the railroad right-of-way.
Because the railroad needed to dig a tunnel through the hill to get over the divide, John DuBois was able to negotiate a deal with the railroad.
The dirt, which was dug out of the hill to construct the tunnel, was used to build a splash dam for DuBois’ logs.
The railroad also could then be used to transport DuBois logs over the divide to his new mill instead of floating them to Williamsport.
When the mill operations closed and the splash dam was no longer needed, Sabula Lake became a recreational area where summer homes of the more affluent people of DuBois were built.