Taking the Waters in Texas: Springs, Spas, and Fountains of Youth by Janet Mace ValenzaTaking the Waters in Texas: Springs, Spas, and Fountains of Youth by Janet Mace Valenza

Taking the Waters in Texas: Springs, Spas, and Fountains of Youth

byJanet Mace Valenza

Paperback | January 1, 2000

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"It is well known that Southern Texas possesses a greater variety of Mineral Waters than any other country on the globe" enthused a promotion for one of Texas' many watering spas of the nineteenth century. Though most are closed and nearly forgotten today, Texas spas and resorts once drew thousands of visitors from across the country, seeking healing of body and spirit in the rejuvenating mineral waters.

This book offers the first comprehensive history of Texas' healing springs. Janet Valenza tracks the rise, popularity, and decline of the "water cure" from the 1830s to the present day. She follows the development of major spas and resorts, such as Mineral Wells and Indian Hot Springs near El Paso, as well as of smaller, family-run springs. She also describes how mineral waters influenced patterns of settlement, transportation routes, commerce, and people's attitudes toward the land. Period photos and quotes from those seeking cures offer vivid glimpses into the daily life at the springs, which Valenza lists and describes county-by-county in the appendix.

The late Janet Valenza held a Ph.D. in geography from the University of Texas at Austin and taught geography at Austin-area colleges and universities.
Title:Taking the Waters in Texas: Springs, Spas, and Fountains of YouthFormat:PaperbackDimensions:279 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.68 inPublished:January 1, 2000Publisher:University Of Texas PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0292787340

ISBN - 13:9780292787346

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Table of Contents

  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction: Vanishing Places
  • 1. Taking the Waters
  • 2. Historic Watering Tradition
  • 3. Texas' Resorts
  • 4. Places Lived: Recapturing Past Landscapes
  • 5. Daily Spa Life
  • 6. Marketing the Waters
  • 7. The Experience of Bathing
  • 8. Places Lost
  • Postscript: Song of the Sacred Waters
  • Appendix A: County List of Medicinal Wells and Springs
  • Appendix B: Regional Guide to Texas' Medicinal Waters
  • Notes
  • Bibliography
  • Index

From Our Editors

Maybe Davey Crocket liked Texas because of the spas and natural spring waters found there – or maybe not. In either case, Janet Mace Valenza has written a comprehensive history of the once internationally renowned string of Texan spas and rejuvenating mineral waters. Taking the Waters in Texas, Springs, Spas, and Fountains of Youth will ease the aches in your muscles and make your complexion as clear as the blue skies of Texas.