One hundred fifty years ago Alexander Brown, the head of a little company of home seekers, crossed the Allegheny range of mountains and shaping his course northwest from the junction of three rivers, wended his way through an almost continous forest until he arrived where a rapid stream flowed through a stretch of low land. Following the stream toward its source, they arrived where a smaller stream emptied into the larger and headed northward.
There were hills extending well back from the waterways and a heavy growth of virgin pines covering the area between two elevations. They found the area they had been looking for and Mr. Brown decided to settle at this point. He had two sons Thomas and James Brown. In 1849, the rapid growth of the settlement decided Thomas Brown, to survey and layout a town, which was given the name of Brownsville, in honor of its founder. Ten years later the growth of the town rendered it necessary to have some system and it was incorporated as a borough.
In 1833 Thomas Brown founded the first post office and became its first post master during Jackson’s administration. On November 16, 1868 the name of Brownsville was changed to Sandy Lake, because there was another Brownsville in the state, causing trouble with the mail. Today we have the distinction of being the only Sandy Lake in the United States.
The borough and the township takes its name from a fine sheet of water lying west of town, surrounded by farming country. A small portion of the lake lies within the bounds of Sandy Lake Borough and the remainder in Lake Township.