Part of a Series published for The Highland Park Review

by Sherry Gros 02/11/23

Part #1 – Spring Lake

The Lake is or has been known as “Spring Lake” Well that’s sort of true depending on from who you are getting your information. Let’s look at the documentation.

“Spring Lake” Subdivision is a gated community in West Mobile across the Lake from Highland Park Subdivision. Spring Lake Subdivision was built by a company named Mitchell from Mobile Alabama in 1996. The land description clearly states Spring Lake residents and HOA own to the boundaries of the lake, so unless something has changed then Spring Lake Subdivision owns to the boundaries of the lake.

Well something did change in 1981 Mr. Tonsmeire and Mr. Weaver, who owned property (at that time) upstream, downstream, and around stream decided to do everyone a favor and rebuild the dam at Optimist Lake. Tonsmeire and Weaver were solidly anchored in businesses throughout Mobile in the Construction industry, Civil Development, Financial Banking, and Real Estate. Tonsmeire and Weaver rebuilt the dam in 1981 with a new standpipe. For whatever reason they lengthened the dam over onto Mr. Tonsmeire’s Property (now Spring Lake Subdivision) causing the waters of Lake Optimist to overflow onto Mr. Tonsmeire’s property (the same Spring Lake Subdivision). Maybe they lengthened the dam and spillway to ease the pressure of the newly increasing amounts of water entering Lake Optimist then over the new dam, discharging into the Milkhouse Creek 200 feet below. Which would make sense. So our lake is still 25 acres not the 23 that the Mobile County Revenue Commission shaved off or somebody shaved off.

So, it looks like the QuitClaim Deed of 2001 that was questioned setting everyone’s hair on fire is…….. STAY TUNED FOR PART TWO.

*This article is for the purpose of documenting area history. Revisions may be posted as data becomes available. Do your own research. Stand for the truth. #DefendYourRights Legend: dark blue waves are boundary line of Lake Optimist, light blue hatching is optimist water overflow onto Spring Lake HOA Commons, green line is original banks of Lake Optimist. In Part two we will agree with the Spring Lake QuitClaim of 2001, explain how Spring Lake got its name, to what the name Spring Lake was applied when, explore the old Bridle Trail on the West Side of Lake Optimist. Coming up we will answer more questions with Facts, and explore more Highland Park Folk Tales. 🥰