The falls in the center of Amesbury are part of the Powwow River, with a variety of machinery, dams, and houses surrounding the falls. The river flows under a historic building in the center of the town. During flooding, the Powwow River has made national news due to the potential destruction of historic buildings in Amesbury.

The river takes an extensive journey, starting with the dam at Tuxbury Pond, the Upper Powow River’s tranquil water snakes north along Woodsom Farm and passes briefly into New Hampshire before turning back into Amesbury and flowing into Lake Gardner.

At the southern end of Lake Gardner, water flows over Lake Gardner Dam. From here the Powow makes its way through historic Amesbury Center, where the water once powered the wheels of industry. In total the river descends 90 feet from the lake to the tidal Lower Powow.

The Lower Powow forms over a mile of rare freshwater tidal estuary habitat. From its tranquil banks along the Lower Millyard Park and Amesbury Riverwalk rail trail, the river runs south to join the Merrimack River at Point Shore and Alliance Park.