by Stan Cohen
This pictorial history recollects days gone by, when people sought the physical comfort and fashionable social life of the springs, spas, and their resorts throughout Virginia and West Virginia. Historic Springs contains descriptions and photographs of 75 places where people came to â€œtake the watersâ€; they reached their peak of popularity in the mid-1800s. Many of these spots were luxurious resorts, where most visited not for their health, but for the â€œeating, drinking, dancing and revelry.â€ Others springs sites had more humble surroundings, and were frequented by families who often camped and brought their own food. This book will be of interest to historians and anyone living in the region.
Take a historic tour through the mountains of Virginia and West Virginia . . . when a fashionable summer meant, â€œtaking the watersâ€ at the springs, spas and resorts of these two states. Historic Springs chronicles 75 historic retreats, complete with descriptions, drawings and photographs. The springs became popular in the late 1700sâ€”initially largely because of their medicinal properties. The springsâ€™ popularity peaked around the mid 1800s, when prosperous Southern planters spent time and money summering at the various resorts. Historic Springs describes the daily life of a spa vacation--which included billiards, pistol galleries, dancing, much eating and drinking--as well as the requisite three trips to the springhouse for a tumbler of water.
Put aside your fast pace, and visit a more leisurely time period with Historic Springs of the Virginias. Travel on a historic tour through the mountains of Virginia and West Virginia, when a fashionable summer meant, â€œtaking the watersâ€ at the springs, spas and resorts of these two states. This pictorial history chronicles 75 of these historic retreats - both those that no longer exist as well as those still thriving today. Historic Springs contains wonderful descriptions, drawings and photographs of these fascinating places.
The springs and their resorts first became popular in the late 1700s - probably owing to the springsâ€™ medicinal properties and the general lack of available medical treatment. The springsâ€™ popularity peaked around the mid 1800s. This was largely due to the prosperity of the Southern planters, who could afford to spend time and money summering at the various resorts. Historic Springs describes the daily life of a spa vacation. Such days often included billiards, pistol galleries, horses and buggies, dancing, much eating and drinking--as well as the requisite three trips to the spring house for a tumbler of spring water.
While the majority of these resorts no longer exist, author Stan Cohen has re-created the layout and buildings comprising these resorts through research and historical illustrations. Historic Springs also looks at cultural and economic developments and how they affected the springs. The westward expansion of the railroad aided in their growth and popularity; war and the rise of the automobile led to their decline. Historic Springs of the Virginias is a fascinating look at a charming part of our nationâ€™s history.