Nestled in the Quachita Mountains, Hot Springs, Arkansas, is one of those towns that tourists have historically sought. Its hot springs have been the stuff of legend since anyone can remember — Native American tribes ascribed medicinal attributes to them.
The town fell under federal protection in 1832 (and even now, it’s historic core is still the oldest federal reserve in the country today), and by the time it incorporated in 1851, its hot springs made it a resort town. In the 1920s and 30s, it was the place Al Capone and other mobsters went to get away from it all.
Today, Hot Springs retains its spa and resort beginnings with its bathhouses and fine dining, but there’s also something for the sportsman, too, from fishing to Oaklawn Racing and Gaming. It’s also a family friendly place, with state parks, museums, and a short day trip to dig up diamonds at Crater of Diamonds State Park in Murfreesboro.
This week’s historical shelter was built about 45 years after the town’s incorporation and is perfectly situated near downtown Hot Springs and the historic Bath House Row in the Quapaw-Prospect District, an area chock full of historic homes (in fact, in district’s application to be added to the National Register of Historic Places, the count was 230 historic homes within the confines of the proposed district) that sits at the base of the West Mountain. (more…)