HISTORY OF

SARATOGA COUNTY, NEW YORK.

by NATHANIEL BARTLETT SYLVESTER

1878

--------------------

HISTORY OF THE VILLAGES AND TOWNS OF SARATOGA COUNTY.

VILLAGE OF SARATOGA SPRINGS (Part 2).

-------------------------

IV. - MINERAL SPRINGS.

The mineral springs of Saratoga have long been world-renowned. They occur in the narrow valley of a little stream that takes its rise in the southwestern part of the village, one branch of which runs from a spring of fresh water situate in the rear of the Clarendon Hotel, and the other from springs in the valley which extends through Congress park. In making improvements the two little branches have long since been diverted from their natural channels, and mostly covered up and lost to view. In their natural state, however, they were both beautiful streams of pure water, the westerly branch running over a rocky bed across Broadway, and after dashing over a little cascade near which Congress spring was discovered, it joined its sister stream in Congress street. After the junction of its two branches, the stream continued through the winding valley, first northerly for a mile or more, then easterly to the valley of the Ten springs, and then southerly to the lake. Along in the valley of this stream, within a distance of two miles, are situate nearly all the famous natural mineral springs of Saratoga. Around these springs, stretching along and across this valley, has sprung up the modern village of Saratoga Springs, - a city in fact, but not in name and organization, peerless in its palatial grandeur and fairy-like beauty

The origin of these mineral waters is one of nature's secrets. In the valley in which they occur, two geologic systems of rocks meet and abut against each other. Here the old Laurentian rocks, covered by the rocks of the Potsdam and calciferous sandstones, end, and the Trenton system of limestones, covered by the Hudson river slates and shales, begins. In the geologic fault or fissure which runs along the valley between these two systems of rocks, the mineral springs rise to the surface. The springs seem to take their rise in the bird's-eye limestone strata which underlies the slate. In sinking wells at the Geyser springs at Ballston Spa and at Round lake, the mineral waters, like those of Saratoga, were, without exception, reached after the drill had passed through the slate and struck the limestone. At the Geyser the wells are sunk to the depth of from one hundred and thirty-two to three hundred feet. At Ballston Spa they reach the depth of several hundred feet more, while at Round lake the well was sunk through the slate to the depth of fourteen hundred feet before the limestone was reached in which the mineral water was found.

It seems that the valley of the Hudson, at this part of its course, is a deep-sunken basin, in which lies a fossil ocean in whose ancient bed the limestones and slates were deposited in its briny waters. Out of this sunken basin of still briny waters, out of this fossil ocean-bed filled with rocky strata, rise the mineral springs of Saratoga. The mineral waters course along between the limestone strata at different depths, and therefore possessing different qualities, until they reach the hard barrier of Laurentian rocks in the fissure that extends through the little valley in the village where they occur, and then they rise to the surface, forced upward by the gaseous constituents.

And now the village of Saratoga Springs owes net only its wondrous growth, but its very existence, to the rich mineral fountains that within its boundaries bubble up from the earth's bosom burdened with their sweet mission of healing.

The mineral springs of Saratoga were first brought to the notice of scientific men and physicians by Dr. Constable, of Schenectady, who examined the mineral waters at Saratoga and Ballston in the year 1770, and pronounced them highly medicinal.

In 1783, Dr. Samuel Tenny, a regimental surgeon stationed at Old Saratoga, called the attention of the medical faculty to these waters. He addressed a letter upon the subject to Dr. Joshua Fisher, of Boston, which was published in the Memoirs of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, vol. ii. part i., 1793.

Dr. Samuel L. Mitchell, LL.D., of New York, said it was one of the remarkable incidents of his life "that in the year 1787 he visited the springs at Saratoga while surrounded by the forest and ascertained, experimentally, that the gas extracted from the water was fixed air, with the power to extinguish flame and destroy the life of breathing animals."

But the first scientific examination of these waters was made by Dr. Valentine Seaman, of New York, an eminent physician, and one of the surgeons of the New York Hospital. In 1793 he published a work entitled "A Dissertation on the Mineral Waters of Saratoga." To him very justly belongs the honor of first developing the true character of these waters by chemical experiment.

In the year 1795, Dr. Vandervoort published the result of his experiment on the Ballston waters.

In the summer of 1817, Dr. John H. Steel published "Some Observations on the Mineral Waters of Saratoga and Ballston," and in 1831 his larger work, entitled "An Analysis of the Mineral Waters of Saratoga and Ballston."

In 1844, Dr. R.L. Allen published the first edition of his work, entitled "A Historical, Chemical, and Therapeutical Analysis of the principal Mineral Waters of Saratoga Springs."

These publications have been followed by many others, too numerous to mention here. {See a list of books relating to Saratoga Springs, in Reminiscences , of Saratoga and Ballston, page 441.}

------------------------------

HIGH ROCK SPRING.

The longest known, if not the most famous, of the mineral springs of Saratoga is the High Rock spring. This spring, as has already been seen, was the famous "medicine spring" of the Mohawks long before it was visited by white men. This, with the Flat Rock spring, since called the Pavilion, and the Red spring, were for many years the only springs known to exist at Saratoga. It takes its name from the peculiar rocky concretion through which it rises to the open air. This rocky concretion seems to have been gradually formed by the spring itself in the course of many centuries. "The material of which this rock is composed," says Henry McGuier, in his concise history of the High Rock spring, "is principally impure lime, and is chiefly derived by the water from the loose earthy materials lying upon the rock out of which it issues. This material is quite different from anything originally found in the water, and is retained in it by a mechanical instead of a chemical force, and, consequently, upon its coming into contact with the atmosphere, and losing much of its activity, it deposits all those materials which have combined with it in its passage from the rocky orifice to the surface, in the form of a stony mass, denominated tufa. This is the origin, and such the substance forming that singular phenomenon known as the 'High Rock.'

"In all the operations of nature everywhere, she has left the evidences of some method by which to determine the successive stages of progressive development and perfection, in all her varied creations. The geologist finds, in the rocks, unquestionable evidences of the stately steppings of the creative energy, and by their organic reliquæ or imbedded petrifactions is enabled to determine the comparative remoteness or nearness of the system he is studying. So, too, the botanist finds in the towering giant of the forest the annular rings of its growth, and he is thereby enabled to trace its history far backward, and perhaps prior to the commencement of his own brief existence. And the palæontologist, by comparing one specimen with another, is enabled to determine the mature from those which are immature; and so throughout.

"The application of this law, then, to any subject of natural history to which our attention may be called, will enable us to arrive, approximately at least, at the truth, whenever we endeavor to trace backward to the commencement of their operations, those causes which have been instrumental in producing it.

"Taking this law for our guide, then, let us determine, if possible, the age of the High Rock.

"In descending from the surface at this point, seven feet of commingled muck and tufa (rocky matter formed by the water) was passed through, then a stratum or layer of tufa two feet thick, a stratum of muck, and then a stratum of tufa three feet thick.

"In determining the time requisite to deposit the five feet of tufa, I caused a specimen of the tufa to be ground down smooth, and at right angles to the lines of deposit, so as to be enabled to count the lines with accuracy, of annual deposit, - as the vicissitudes of our climate determine those lines, for when frozen, as in our winter, the water makes no deposit. I found twenty-five such lines embraced within a single inch, and as there are sixty inches in the aggregate, a very simple computation shows that one thousand five hundred years were consumed in depositing these layers of tufa alone; and this tufa, it must be remembered, was deposited from standing water, or with but very little motion, as the tufa occupies a horizontal position.

"Lying upon the stratum of tufa three feet thick, and in the stratum of muck superimposed upon it, was found a pine-tree, the annular rings of which I counted to the number of one hundred and thirty; this sum added to the above, and we have the further sum of one thousand six hundred and thirty years. And from the foregoing data I deem it a moderate approximation to claim four hundred years as the requisite time in which to deposit the seven feet of superincumbent muck and tufa, which gives the still further sum of two thousand and thirty years.

"The facts which add strength to the foregoing conclusions, and lend thrilling interest to this subject, are the evidences which are found at this depth of the surface, that this level was once occupied by human beings. Here the extinguished fire marks unmistakably the gathering-place of the family group many centuries ago. And here, too, linger the 'foot-prints' of a long-gone race, as if loth to leave a spot once so cherished, and around which clustered so many pleasing recollections.

"The reader will observe that the above estimate does not include the rock or cone of the spring, but simply the intermediate strata between the cone and the deposits below. To determine the length of time requisite to form the cone or rock of the spring, it became necessary to visit a locality where the water, which is now depositing tufa, has a velocity similar to that which the water must have had from which the rock of the High Rock spring was deposited. Accordingly, resort was had to such a locality, and it was found that five of the annual strata thus deposited occupied the space of one-sixteenth of an inch, - thus requiring eighty years to perfect one inch; and as the cone of the High Rock is four feet in height, it must have required three thousand eight hundred and forty years to have formed the cone; and, in the ,aggregate, five thousand eight hundred and seventy years (some eminent scientists, who have had their attention drawn to this subject, estimate its age at even more than this) must have been consumed in the formation of the High Rock spring."

Ownership of High Rock spring. - On Friday, Feb. 22, 1771, the patent of Kayaderosseras was partitioned by ballot, and lot No. 12 of the sixteenth general allotment - on which lot the High Rock spring is situated - by such balloting came into possession of the heirs of Rip Van Dam, who had died in 1745, pending the controversy with the Indians in regard to the patent. They were the first individuals who ever exercised any possessory jurisdiction over this spring. Soon after, Rip Van Dam's executors sold the same to Isaac Low, Jacob Walton, and Anthony Van Dam. Low was attainted for treason by the Legislature of New York, Oct. 1, 1779, and Henry Livingston, upon the sale of Low's portion of the lot, purchased the same for himself and several of his brothers. The property was again divided in 1793. At this time it was held by Henry Walton, Henry Livingston, and Anthony Van Dam. Walton then purchased Van Dam's portion of the property, and of the part of lot twelve lying to the north of Congress spring Judge Walton became the sole owner.

The High Rock remained the property of the Walton heirs until the year 1826, when Mr. John H. White, a stepson of Dr. Clarke, on behalf of Mrs. Clarke and the heirs, purchased of the executors of Henry Walton the remaining portion of the High Rock, and they thus became possessed of the entire property.

In 1864, William B. White, who succeeded Dr. Clarke in the control and management of the Congress spring, died, and soon after it passed into other hands, and the necessity for the longer retention of this, to them entirely unproductive property, ceased to exist. In 1865, Messrs. Ainsworth and McCaffrey became the owners of this prodigy of nature, and soon after commenced a series of improvements. After removing the building which sheltered the spring they set about removing the rock or cone whole, upon accomplishing which, contrary to general expectation, they discovered that the cone had no direct or immediate connection with the rock below, but that the water was supplied by percolation through the intervening soil. They at once determined upon removing the soil quite down to the permanent orifice in the rock below, and by supplying an artificial channel between that point and the surface, to reproduce that much-desired spectacle of the water once again bubbling up and running over the crest of the cone. After passing through about seven feet of commingled muck and tufa, they came upon a layer of tufa about two feet thick, then a stratum of muck, then another stratum of tufa three feet thick; through the muck were disseminated the trunks of large trees and pine and other forest leaves in profuse abundance - the concentric rings of the trunk of one of those trees was counted and there were found one hundred and thirty. Those trees must have lain there for a long period of time before they became covered by the increasing peaty deposit, for their upper surfaces were worn smooth by the moccasins of the Indians, as they formed a convenient passage-way for them to the spring; and thus proceeding through alternating strata of muck and tufa down to the desired point, where an opening was reached which furnished a volume of water vastly superior to anything ever before witnessed at this place, and so great, even, as to affect materially for the time the level of the springs in the neighborhood, some of them to the extent of quite two feet; thus exhibiting the fact that this is the main opening of all our mineral waters at this point. A tube was then furnished, placed in position, and properly secured, in which the mineral water rose several feet above the original surface of the rock or cone. Preparations were immediately made for replacing the rock back upon the vein of water, and after considerable labor and trial that purpose was accomplished, and water welled up through the orifice and overflowed the rock, as now seen by the visitors at this spring. After the improvements were finished, On the 23d day of August, a celebration was had at the rock. A large meeting assembled over which the venerable Chancellor Walworth presided, which was addressed by the chancellor and William L. Stone.

In the course of his remarks the chancellor said:

"In the fall of 1777, after the surrender of General Burgoyne, and while our troops lay at Palmertown, about six miles north of here, several of our officers visited this spring, which had then attained some celebrity, as one of those officers has since told me. And it had for a long time before that been known to the Indians as 'The Great Medicine Spring.'

"When the mineral waters of this ancient spring, which are this day (by artificial means) made again to flow over the top of this rock, ceased to flow over, is not known to any one now living. But I will give you the information I have on that subject. I first visited Saratoga in the summer of 1812, fifty-four years since. The water in this rock was then about as much below the top of the rock as it was when I came here to reside, eleven years afterwards, I think eighteen or twenty inches, or perhaps a little more. The late Major-General Mooers, of Plattsburg, who was an officer of Colonel Hazen's regiment at the taking of General Burgoyne's army, was at my house, and visited this spring with me, a few years previous to his death. He then told me that he, with other officers, came from Palmertown to this spring, in October, 1777. And he said the height of water in the rock was then about the same as it was when we visited it, sixty years thereafter.

"About forty-one years since, while holding a circuit court on the northern frontier of this State, I stayed over the Sabbath with a friend who resided a few miles from the Indian settlement at St. Regis; and we attended the religious services at the Indian church in their village. Between the morning and afternoon services at the church, we went to the house of one of their chiefs, named Loran Tarbel, with whom I had become acquainted during my residence at Plattsburg. He was then between eighty and ninety years of age, but was in health and in perfect mental vigor. Knowing that some of the St. Regis Indians had once resided on the banks of the Mohawk river, I was anxious to learn what this aged chief knew in relation to this spring. But as he had a very imperfect knowledge of the English language, I spoke to his son, Captain Tarbel, who had an English education. I described the High Rock spring, and asked him if he knew anything about it. He said he had never been there, and had never heard of it. I then requested him to describe it to his father, and to ask him if he had ever heard of it. The moment he did so, the early recollections of the venerable chief were aroused; and indicating by the motions of his hand the shape of the top of the rock, he said, 'Yes, Great Medicine Spring.'

"He then told me, through his son as interpreter, that he was born at Caughnawaga, on the Mohawk; and that he emigrated with his father to Canada several years before the Revolutionary war. That when he was a boy, the Indians living on the Mohawk were in the habit of visiting this spring and using its waters as a medicine. That when he was about fifteen years old, and shortly before he emigrated to Canada, he came here with his father to see the great Medicine spring. I then asked him if the water flowed over the top of the rock at that time. He said it did not; that they had to get the medicine water by dipping it out of the rock with a cup or gourd shell. That there was then a tradition among the Indians that the medicine water had formerly flowed out of the rock at its top, but that it had ceased to do so for a long time before he came here with his father. He then gave me the Indian tradition as to the cause of the cessation of the overflowing of the water. The particulars of this tradition I cannot repeat, in his words, in the presence of this audience; but the substance of it was that the Great Spirit., who had made this wonderful rock, and had caused the healing waters to flow from it spontaneously, for the benefit of his red children, was angry on account of the desecration of its medicine waters in making so improper use of them by some of their squaws, who had visited the spring, that the water never flowed over the rock afterwards.

"Such was the tradition of the untutored Indians, who knew little of geology or of hydraulics. But the true reason why the mineral waters ceased to flow out at the top of this rock, which had been gradually formed from their deposits, was probably this: these waters, in process of time, had found another outlet, perhaps at some considerable distance from here, and which outlet must have been something like twenty inches lower than the level of the top of this rock. For we now see that by tubing the mineral fountain so that it cannot escape from beneath, or in any other way than through this natural orifice at the top of the rock, the present proprietors of the spring now cause its healing waters to flow out again, where they had ceased to flow for more than a century at the least."

 

ANALYSIS BY PROF. C.F. CHANDLER, OF COLUMBIA COLLEGE.

The following analysis of the High Rock spring water was made by Prof. C.F. Chandler, Ph.D., of Columbia College School of Mines, who visited the spring and personally collected the water for analysis. Analysis of one United States gallon:

 

Grains.

 

Chloride of sodium

390.127

 

Chloride of potassium

8.497

 

Bromide of sodium

0.731

 

Iodide of sodium

0.086

 

Fluoride of calcium

trace.

 

Sulphate of potassium

1.608

 

Bicarbonate of baryta

trace.

 

Bicarbonate of strontia

trace.

 

Bicarbonate of lime

131.739

 

Bicarbonate of magnesia

54.924

 

Bicarbonate of soda

34.888

 

Bicarbonate of iron

1.478

 

Phosphate of lime

trace.

 

Alumina

1.223

 

Silica

2.260

 

Total

628.039

 

Carbonic acid gas

409.458

cub. in.

 

It is thus shown that the water is highly charged with valuable mineral and gaseous properties.

------------------------------

CONGRESS SPRING.

The Congress spring has long been the most famous of all the mineral springs of Saratoga. It may, of a truth, be said that to the early development of this spring the village of Saratoga Spring owes much of its present prosperity.

As has been already seen, Congress spring was not discovered till the year 1792.

As to who the actual discoverer was there seems to be considerable doubt. The discovery of this spring has been generally attributed to John Taylor Gilman, of New Hampshire. Gilman and his brother, it is said, were both staying with Benjamin Risley, at the Schouten House. That John Taylor Gilman was there at all has lately been denied by the minister of the church in New Hampshire which he attended. Dr. John H. Steel also seems to think it may have been Gilman's brother, who had been a member of Congress. The discovery, tradition says, was in the following manner:

Upon a pleasant afternoon in August, he took his gun and strolled up the little creek that runs past the High Rock spring, in search of game. Saratoga was then all a wilderness, excepting the little clearing around the tavern, and two or three others in the vicinity. He followed up the little brook, as it ran through the tangled swamp, until he came to a branch that entered it from the west. This branch then took its rise in a clear spring that ran out of the sand-bank, near where the Clarendon Hotel now stands. Running across Broadway, then an Indian trail, a little northerly of the Washington spring, it emptied into a main brook in what is now Congress street, just below the Congress spring. A few yards above the mouth of the branch was a little cascade. Below the cascade, the rock rose abruptly two or three feet above the level of its bed. Out of this rocky bank, at the foot of the cascade, a little jet of sparkling water, not larger than a pipe-stem, spirted and fell into the water of the stream. Struck by its singular appearance, Gilman stopped to examine it. It tasted not unlike the water of the High Rock spring that was already so famous. The truth flashed upon his mind in an instant. He had found a new mineral spring.

Hastening back to his boarding-place, Gilman made known his discovery. Every person in the settlement was soon at the foot of that little cascade in the deep wild woods, wondering at the curious spectacle. There was Risley and his family, of the Schouten House. There was Alexander Bryan, the patriot scout of the Revolution, who kept the only rival tavern - a log one - near Risley's. There was General Schuyler, who had, just ten years before, cut a road through the woods from his mills near the mouth of Fish creek to the Springs; and Gideon Putnam, the founder of the lower village; and Gilman's brother, and a few more guests who were at the little log tavern. And there, too, was Indian Joe, from his clearing on the hill, near where the Clarendon now is, and some of his swarthy brethren, from their huts near the High Rock, wondering at the strange commotion among the pale-faces at the little waterfall in the brook. And they all, gathering around it, each in turn tasted the water of the newly-found fountain, and, pronouncing it of superior quality, they named it then and there the Congress spring, out of compliment to its distinguished discoverer, and in honor of the old Continental Congress, of which he had been a member.

Governor Gilman had long been connected with public affairs, and was the popular leader of the Federal party in his native State. He had served with honor in the Provincial forces in the War of the Revolution, had been a delegate in the Continental Congress for two years, and was at this time State treasurer, and from 1794 was for eleven years governor of the State.

Judging from all the evidence it is probable that the real discoverer was Nicholas Gilman, a younger brother of the governor, a member of the First Congress at Philadelphia. He had been assistant adjutant-general of General Horatio Gates, and as such had become familiar with the country in the vicinity of Saratoga. It is stated, not very definitely as to dates, however, that "once, on his way from Philadelphia, he came to New York to visit in the family of his friend, George Clinton, and to see the place of Burgoyne's surrender, and in going a gunning found that spring."

Like the High Rock, the title of Congress spring runs back to the old Indian deed of Kayadrossera and the patent of the same name; falling, in the division of the patent in 1771 between the thirteen proprietary interests, to the heirs of Rip Van Dam. Lot 12 was sold by said heirs to Jacob Walton, Isaac Low, and Anthony Van Dam. Isaac Low at first adhered to the American cause, but afterwards went to England, and his estates were confiscated. His interest in lot 12 was bought by the Livingstons, who, on its division, became the owners of the part on which Congress spring is situated. Soon after its discovery, Congress spring was leased to Gideon Putnam, and he began its improvement. After his death his heirs gave up the claim, and the spring, in 1823, was purchased by Dr. John Clarke with considerable land adjoining. Dr. Clarke was a native of Yorkshire, England. He married Mrs. Eliza White, by whom he had three children, - a daughter Eliza, now Mrs. Sheehan, and two sons, Thomas and George B. By her first husband she had two sons, - William B. White and John H. White, and two daughters, Mary R., who married Daniel Shepherd, and Louisa A., who married Amos A. Maxwell.

After Dr. Clarke bought the spring he went at once to work and made great improvements. In truth he laid the foundation of the present prosperous condition of the spring property. He formed the unsightly swamp into a beautiful park, laid out streets, built houses, and in a large degree contributed to the present prosperity of the village. In 1825 Dr. Clarke began to bottle the water, - a business which has so increased from its small beginnings that now from seventy-five to one hundred thousand dozen bottles are annually sold. Dr. Clarke died on the 6th day of May, 1856. A few years after his death, William B. White bought the property of his heirs, and remained sole owner till he died. In 1865 Mrs. Eliza Sheehan bought the property of the heirs of Wm. B. White, and she became the sole owner.

Mrs. Sheehan afterward sold one-half her interest to Chauncey Kilmer, and an incorporated company was formed, entitled "The Congress and Empire Spring Company," with a capital of one million dollars, in whose hands the spring still remains. In making up the stock the Congress spring was put in at $700,000 and the Empire at $300,000.

The present officers of the company are Berkley B. Hotchkiss, president; Cornelius Sheehan, vice-president and treasurer; Charles C. Dawson, secretary; Charles A. Hotchkiss, William Van Vranken, Louis E. Whiting, and John T. Carr, directors.

ANALYSIS OF CONGRESS SPRING WATER, BY PROFESSOR C. F. CHANDLER.

One United States gallon of 231 cubic inches contains:

 

 

grains.

 

Chloride of sodium

400.444

 

Chloride of potassium

8.049

 

Bicarbonate of magnesia

121.757

 

Bicarbonate of lime

143.399

 

Bicarbonate of lithia

4.761

 

Bicarbonate of soda

10.775

 

Bicarbonate of baryta

0.928

 

Bicarbonate of iron

0.340

 

Bicarbonate of strontia

a trace.

 

Bromide of sodium

8.559

 

Iodide of sodium

0.138

 

Sulphate of potassa

0.889

 

Phosphate of soda

0.010

 

Silica

0.840

 

Fluoride of calcium

\

 

Biborate of soda

each a trace.

 

Alumina

/

 

Total

700.805

 

Carbonic acid gas

392.289

cubic inches.

 

Our limited space does not allow us to go much into detail in the history of the numerous other mineral springs of Saratoga. A short mention and analysis of their waters is all we can give.

------------------------------

COLUMBIAN SPRING.

This spring is located in Congress park, just west of the Congress-park entrance and a little nearer Broadway.

ANALYSIS OF COLUMBIAN WATERS, BY PROF. E. EMMONS.

Specific gravity 1007.3. Solid and gaseous contents as follows:

 

 

Grains.

 

Chloride of sodium

267.00

 

Bicarbonate of soda

15.40

 

Bicarbonate of magnesia

46.71

 

Hydriodate of soda

2.06

 

Carbonate of lime

68.00

 

Carbonate of iron

5.58

 

Silex

2.05

 

Hydro-bromate of potash scarcely a traces.

 

 

Solid contents in a gallon

407.30

 

 

 

 

Carbonic acid gas

272.06

inches.

Atmospheric air

4.50

"

 

278.56

inches.

 

------------------------------

EMPIRE SPRING.

This spring, one of the best in Saratoga, is located in the north part of the shallow valley that runs through the village.

Although the existence of mineral water in this locality was known for a long time, it was not until 1846 that any one thought it worth the necessary expense of excavation and tubing. The rock was struck twelve feet below the surface of the earth, and so copious was the flow of water that the tubing proved to be a work of unusual difficulty. When once accomplished, the water flowed in great abundance and purity. Its general properties closely resemble the Congress, and it was for a time known as the New Congress spring. The spring is now owned by the Congress and Empire Spring Company.

ANALYSIS OF EMPIRE SPRING WATER, BY PROF. C. F. CHANDLER.

One United States gallon of 231 cubic inches contains:

 

 

Grains.

 

Chloride of sodium

506.630

 

Chloride of potassium

4.292

 

Bicarbonate of magnesia

42.953

 

Bicarbonate of lime

109.656

 

Bicarbonate of lithia

2.080

 

Bicarbonate of soda

9.022

 

Bicarbonate of baryta

0.075

 

Bicarbonate of iron

0.793

 

Bicarbonate of strontia

a trace.

 

Bromide of sodium

0.266

 

Iodide of sodium

0.006

 

Sulphate of potassa

2.769

 

Phosphate of soda

0.023

 

Silica

1.145

 

Alumina

0.418

 

Fluoride of calcium

\

 

Biborate of soda,

each a trace.

 

Organic matter

/

 

Total

880.436

 

Carbonic acid

344.699

cubic in.

 

------------------------------

EXCELSIOR SPRING.

This spring is found in a beautiful valley, amid picturesque scenery, about a mile east of the town-hall. The principal park entrance is on Lake avenue, half a mile from Circular street, or it may be approached by Spring avenue, which will lead us past most of the principal springs, and the Loughberry Water-Works with its famous Holly machinery. Near the water-works, we see just before us the fine summer hotel known as the Mansion House, surrounded by its grand old trees and beautiful lawn.

The valley in which these two springs is situated was formerly known as the "Valley of the Ten Springs," but the present owners, after grading and greatly beautifying the grounds, changed its name in honor of the spring to Excelsior park. In this valley are the Union spring and several others, giving rise to the name "Ten Springs."

The Excelsior spring has been known by some of the oldest visitors of Saratoga for at least half a century. The water, however, was not much known to the general public until 1859, when Mr. H.H. Lawrence, the former owner, and father of the present proprietors, retubed the spring in the most thorough manner, - the tubing extending to a depth of fifty-six feet, eleven of which are in the solid rock. By this improvement the water flows with all its properties undeteriorated, retaining from source to outlet its original purity and strength.

ANALYSIS OF THE EXCELSIOR SPRING WATER.

By the late R.L. Allen, M.D., of Saratoga Springs.

 

 

Grains.

Chloride of sodium

370.642

Carbonate of lime

77.000

Carbonate of magnesia

32.333

Carbonate of soda

15.000

Silicate of potassa

7.000

Carbonate of iron

3.215

Sulphate of soda

1.321

Silicate of soda

4.000

Iodide of soda

4.235

Bromide of potassa

a trace.

Sulphate of strontia

a trace.

Solid contents in a gallon

514.746

Carbonic acid

250

cubic inches.

Atmosphere

3

"

Gaseous contents

253

"

 

------------------------------

UNION SPRING.

This spring is near the centre of Excelsior park, and about ten rods northwest of Excelsior spring. It was originally known as the "Jackson" spring, and is described under that name by Dr. John H. Steel, in his "Mineral Waters of Saratoga and Ballston." The water was but imperfectly secured until the present proprietors had the spring retubed in 1868.

Prof. C.F. Chandler, the distinguished chemist, says, "This water is of excellent strength. It is specially noticeable that the ratio of magnesia to lime is universally large, which is a decided advantage. The water is also remarkably free from iron, a fact which is a great recommendation." We append Dr. Chandler's analysis:

ANALYSIS OF THE UNION SPRING WATER, BY PROF. C.F. CHANDLER.

LABORATORY OF THE SCHOOL OF MINES,

COLUMBIA COLLEGE, NEW YORK, March 26, 1853.

The sample of mineral water taken from the Union spring, Saratoga, contains in one U. S. gallon of 231 cubic inches:

 

 

Grains.

Chloride of sodium

458.299

Chloride of potassium

8.733

Bromide of sodium

1.307

Iodide of sodium

0.039

Fluoride of calcium

a trace.

Bicarbonate of lithia

2.605

Bicarbonate of soda

17.010

Bicarbonate of magnesia

109.685

Bicarbonate of lime

96.703

Bicarbonate of strontia

a trace.

Bicarbonate of baryta

1.703

Bicarbonate of iron

0.269

Sulphate of potassa

1.818

Phosphate of soda

0.026

Biborate of soda

a trace.

Alumina

0.324.

Silica

2.653

Organic matter

a trace.

Total solid contents

701.174.

Carbonic acid gas in one gallon

384.939 cubic inches.

Temperature

48 deg. Fahr.

 

------------------------------

GEYSER OR "SPOUTING SPRING."

This spring is a most wonderful fountain of mineral water. It was discovered in 1870, and is situated about one mile and a quarter southwest of the village of Saratoga Springs, in the midst of the beautiful region now known as "Geyser Lake and Park." The spring-house is a building which was formerly occupied for manufacturing purposes; but has, since the spring was discovered, been fitted up for the reception of visitors. As you enter the building, directly in front is this marvelous spouting spring, sending forth a powerful stream of water to the very top of the room, which, in descending to its surrounding basin, sprays into a thousand crystal streams, forming a beautiful, overflowing fountain charming to behold.

In the centre of the room is the artistical basin into which the spray descends. It is about six feet square, and from the bottom rises an iron pipe. From this pipe leaps, in fantastic dance, the creamy water of the spring. To allow it full play there is an opening in the ceiling, and here it rises and falls, day and night, continually. A large business is here carried on in bottling this valuable water.

The spring rises from an orifice bored in the rock, five and a half inches in diameter, and one hundred and thirty-two feet deep. The rock formation consists of a strata of slate eighty feet thick, beneath which lies the strata of bird's-eye limestone in which the mineral vein was struck. The orifice is tubed with a block-tin pipe, encased with iron, to the depth of eighty-five feet, the object being to bring the water through the soft slate formation, as the immense pressure and force of the gas would dissolve the slate, thereby causing impurities in the water.

ANALYSIS OF ONE U.S. GALLON.

 

 

Grains.

Chloride of sodium

502.080

Chloride of potassium

24.634

Bromide of sodium

2.212

Iodide of sodium

0.248

Fluoride of calcium

a trace,

Bicarbonate of lithia

9.004

Bicarbonate of soda

71.232

Bicarbonate of magnesia

149.343

Bicarbonate of lime

168.392

Bicarbonate of strontia

0.425

Bicarbonate of baryta

2.014

Bicarbonate of iron

0.979

Sulphate of potassa

0.318

Phosphate of soda

a trace.

Biborate of soda

a trace.

Alumina

a trace.

Silica

0.665

Organic matter

a trace.

Total solid contents

991.456

Carbonic acid gas in one U. S. gallon

454.082

cubic inches.

Density

1.011

 

Temperature

46

deg. Fahr.

 

------------------------------

CHAMPION SPOUTING SPRING.

This singular fountain is situated about one mile and a half south of the village of Saratoga Springs, near the carriage-road leading to Ballston Spa, and can be seen from all the passing railroad trains. It is one of the group of remarkable spouting springs which have recently been developed by means of boring into the rocky foundation of the valley of the stream near by. It was discovered in 1871, after sinking a shaft to the then unusual depth of three hundred feet. From a deeply-concealed cavern in the Trenton limestone, the fountain burst forth to light, sending a column of water six and one-half inches in diameter twenty-five or thirty feet into the air, presenting to the astonished spectators a marvelous and beautiful spectacle. The gaseous force of the water has since been checked by a strong iron cap, fastened to the top of the tubing, allowing only a small jet of water to escape, except at five o'clock in the afternoon, when this cap is removed, and the water darts forth in large volume to a height of sixty to eighty feet, imitating the wonderful Yellowstone and Iceland Geysers. During the coldest weather of winter the water freezes around the tube, and gradually forms a column of solid ice from thirty to forty feet high and several feet in diameter. This spring possesses the chemical elements common to the Saratoga spring waters. We append an analysis by Professor C.F. Chandler, of Columbia College, N.Y.:

SOLID CONTENTS OF ONE U. S. GALLON, 231 CUBIC INCHES.

 

 

Grains.

Chloride of sodium

702.239

Chloride of potassium

46.446

Bromide of sodium

3.579

Iodide of sodium

0.234

Fluoride of calcium

a trace.

Bicarbonate of lithia

5.647

Bicarbonate of soda

17.624

Bicarbonate of magnesia

193.912

Bicarbonate of lime

227.070

Bicarbonate of strontia

0.082

Bicarbonate of baryta

2.083

Bicarbonate of iron

0.647

Sulphate of potassa

0.252

Phosphate of soda

0.010

Biborate of soda

a trace.

Alumina

0.458

Silica

0.699

Organic matter

a trace.

Total grains

1195.582

Carbonic acid gas

465.458 cubic inches.

Temperature

49 deg. Fahr.

 

------------------------------

THE HATHORN SPRING.

This spring is on Spring street, directly opposite the north wing of Congress Hall. It was discovered in 1869 by some workmen employed in placing the foundation of the brick block which contains the ball-room of Congress Hall. It is named in honor of the Hon. Henry H. Hathorn, who first developed the spring and rebuilt the famous Congress Hall Hotel. The spring was very securely tubed in 1872, at the large expense of $15,000. The Hathorn spring has since become one of the most valuable springs in Saratoga. Large quantities of water are bottled and sold in the leading towns and cities of the United States and Canada.

The water contains 888.403 grains of solid contents in a gallon, and combines chloride of sodium, the prevailing chemical element of all the Saratoga spring-waters, with bicarbonate of lithia and other valuable properties.

ANALYSIS OF THE HATHORN SPRING WATER.

 

Grains.

 

Chloride of sodium

509.968

 

Chloride of potassium

9.597

 

Bromide of sodium

1.534

 

Iodide of sodium

.198

 

Fluoride of calcium

a trace.

 

Bicarbonate of lithia

11.447

 

Bicarbonate of soda

4.288

 

Bicarbonate of magnesia

176.463

 

Bicarbonate of lime

170.646

 

Bicarbonate of strontia.

a trace.

 

Bicarbonate of baryta

1.737

 

Bicarbonate of iron

1.128

 

Sulphate of potassa

none.

 

Phosphate of soda

.006

 

Biborate of soda

a trace.

 

Alumina

.131

 

Silica

1.260

 

Organic matter

a trace.

 

Total solid contents

888.403

 

Carbonic acid gas in one gallon

375.741

in.

Density

1.009

 

 

------------------------------

THE STAR SPRING.

This spring was formerly known as the President and the Iodine. It is over half a century since its waters were first known and used, but their full virtues were not developed until 1862, when the water was traced to its rocky sources, and the spring tubed in the best manner.

Since then the Saratoga Star spring has greatly increased its popularity as a mineral water, and is now recognized as one of the leading waters in the principal markets. The water is largely charged with carbonic acid gas, which renders it peculiarly valuable as a bottling water, since it preserves its freshness much longer than waters containing a smaller amount of the gas.

We give the analysis of this celebrated spring, showing the amount of mineral properties in one gallon of the water as determined by eminent chemists:

 

 

Grains.

Chloride of sodium

378.962

Chloride of potassium

9.229

Bromide of sodium

55.65

Iodide of sodium

20.000

Sulphate of potassa

5.400

Bicarbonate of lime

124.459

Bicarbonate of magnesia

61.912

Bicarbonate of soda

12.662

Bicarbonate of iron

1.213

Silica

1.283

Phosphate of lime

a trace.

Solid contents in a gallon

615.685

Carbonic acid gas, 407.55 cubic inches in a gallon.

 

 

------------------------------

THE SARATOGA VICHY SPOUTING SPRING.

is located on Ballston avenue, opposite Geyser spring, in the midst of a park embracing a beautiful sloping lawn, studded with forest-trees on one side, and the pretty little Geyser lake on the other. Its surroundings are picturesque, and are among the most attractive scenery about Saratoga. It was discovered in the month of March, 1872, by drilling in the solid rock to the depth of one hundred and eighty feet.

This spring contains more soda and less salt than any other Saratoga water, and takes special rank at once among the valuable mineral waters of this famous Spa, from its wonderful similarity to the Vichy waters of France. It is the only alkaline water found at Saratoga. The following analysis of the Saratoga Vichy, made by Professor C.F. Chandler, of the Columbia College School of Mines, demonstrates its value as a medicinal agent, and as an alkaline water of equal merit with the celebrated French Vichy. Contains in one United States gallon of 231 cubic inches:

 

 

Grains.

Chloride of sodium

128.689

Chloride of potassium

14.113

Bromide of sodium

0.990

Iodide of sodium

a trace.

Fluoride of calcium

a trace.

Bicarbonate of lithia

1.760

Bicarbonate of soda

82.873

Bicarbonate of magnesia

41.503

Bicarbonate of lime

95.522

Bicarbonate of strontia

a trace.

Bicarbonate of baryta

0.593

Bicarbonate of iron

0.052

Sulphate of potassa

a trace.

Phosphate of soda

a trace.

Biborate of soda

a trace.

Alumina

0.473

Silica

0.758

Organic matter

a trace.

Carbonic acid gas in one gallon

383.071 cubic inches.

Temperature

50 deg. Fahr.

 

------------------------------

THE WASHINGTON SPRING.

is situated in the grounds of the Clarendon Hotel, on South Broadway, just south of the Columbian Hotel, and in what was formerly called the Recreation Garden. It is a chalybeate or iron spring, having tonic and diuretic properties. It is not a saline water, and the peculiar inky taste of iron is perceptible. It should be drank in the afternoon or evening, before or after meals, or just before retiring. One glass is sufficient for tonic purposes. Many regard this as the most agreeable beverage in Saratoga. It is frequently called the "Champagne Spring," from its sparkling properties. It is one of the most popular springs in Saratoga, and in the afternoon is thronged with visitors.

Below is given an analysis made by the distinguished practical chemists, James R. Chilton & Co., showing the substances contained in each gallon of the water to be as follows:

 

 

Grains.

Chloride of sodium

182.733

Bicarbonate of magnesia

65.973

Bicarbonate of lime

84.096

Bicarbonate of soda

8.474

Bicarbonate of iron

3.800

Chloride of calcium

.203

Chloride of magnesium

.680

Sulphate of magnesia

.051

Iodide of sodium

2.243

Bromide of potassium

.474

Silicic acid

1.500

Alumina

a trace.

 

350.227

 

The gases which were contained and analyzed at the spring yielded for the gallon as follows:

 

Carbonic acid

363.77

Atmospheric air

6.41

Cubic inches

370.18

 

------------------------------

THE PAVILION SPRING.

is situated in the valley a few rods east of Broadway, between Lake avenue and Caroline street, and directly at the head of Spring avenue, and is reached from Broadway by taking Lake avenue or Caroline street to the second block. It is one of the best of the far-famed springs of Saratoga.

The shaft has been re-excavated ten feet deeper to the rock: the spring re-tubed, the course of the brook (which flowed through the grounds) changed, well-arranged walks laid out, and a tasteful pavilion built over the fountain. The shaft of the spring having been carried out through the hard pan to the rock below has greatly improved the water. Its minerals have been nearly doubled in strength and increased in number, and the fountain now stands second to none for medicinal and commercial purposes in this justly-celebrated mineral valley. This deep tubing will therefore secure a uniformity in the strength and quality of the water which cannot be obtained in springs which are tubed near the surface of the ground.

ANALYSIS OF PAVILION SPRING WATER.

 

Grains.

Chloride of sodium

459.903

Chloride of potassium

7.860

Bromide of sodium

.987

Iodide of sodium

.071

Fluoride of calcium

a trace.

Bicarbonate of lithia

9.486

Bicarbonate of soda

3.764

Bicarbonate of magnesia

70.267

Bicarbonate of lime

120.169

Bicarbonate of strontia

a trace.

Bicarbonate of baryta

.875

Bicarbonate of iron

2.570

Sulphate of potassa

2.032

Phosphate et soda

.007

Biborate of soda

a trace.

Alumina

.329

Silica

3.155

Organic matter

a trace.

Total grains

687.275

Carbonic acid gas

332.458 cubic inches.

Density, 1.0075, contained in U. S. gallon

231 cubic inches.

 

C.F. CHANDLER,

Professor of Analytical and Applied Chemistry.

------------------------------

THE RED SPRING.

This spring, one of the oldest at Saratoga and among the most valuable for its curative properties, is easily found a few steps beyond the Empire spring.

It was discovered soon after the Revolutionary war, by a Mr. Norton, who had been driven from the place by hostile Indians, but who returned about 1784 to reoccupy some buildings erected by him for the accommodation of a few invalids, who visited the High Rock, Flat Rock, President, and Red springs. No other springs were known at that time, or for many years after. Nearly one hundred years ago, the first bath-house ever built in Saratoga was erected at the Red spring, and used for the cure of all kinds of eruptive and skin diseases for many years.

The following analysis of Red spring water was made by Prof. John H. Appleton, of Brown University, Providence, R.I. The amounts specify the number of grains of the various substances in one imperial gallon of the water:

 

 

Grains.

Bicarbonate of lithia (LiO, HO, 2CO)

.942

Bicarbonate of soda (NaO, HO, 2CO)

15.327

Bicarbonate of magnesia (MgO, HO, 2CO)

42.413

Bicarbonate of lime (CaO, HO, 2CO)

101.256

Chloride of sodium (NaCl)

83.530

Chloride of potassium (KCl)

6.857

Alumina and sesquioxide of iron

2.100

Silica

3.255

Phosphates

a trace.

Total

254.719

 

------------------------------

THE HAMILTON SPRING.

is almost directly to the rear of Congress Hall, on Putnam street. It may be seen from Broadway, near the foot of the hill. Its waters are freely offered to all, though it is not bottled. The following is an analysis of this spring:

 

 

Grains.

Chloride of sodium

207.3

Hydriodate of soda

3.

Bicarbonate of soda

27.030

Bicarbonate of magnesia

35.2

Carbonate of lime

92.4

Carbonate of iron

5.39

Hydrobromate of potash

a trace.

Contents in one gallon

460.326

Carbonic acid gas

316

inches.

Atmospheric air

4

"

Gaseous contents in a gallon

320

inches.

 

------------------------------

THE SARATOGA "A" SPRING.

is opposite the old Red spring, near the railroad embankment. The following is an analysis of its waters by Julius G. Pohle, M.D. A sample of the water contains per U. S. gallon:

 

 

Grains.

Chloride of sodium

565.300

Chloride of potassium

.357

Chloride of calcium and magnesia

a trace.

Bicarbonate of soda

6.752

Bicarbonate of lime

56.852

Bicarbonate of magnesia

20.480

Bicarbonate of iron

1.724

Sulphate of lime

.448

Sulphate of magnesia

.288

Sulphate of soda

2.500

Sulphate of potassa

.370

Silicic acid

1.460

Alumina

.380

Solid contents per gallon

656.911

Free carbonic acid gas

212

cubic

inches.

Atmospheric air

4

"

"

Per gallon

216

cubic

inches.

 

------------------------------

THE HYPERION SPOUTING SPRING, OR. SARATOGA KISSINGEN.

The following analysis is by Prof. S.P. Sharples, State Assayer of Massachusetts. Amount of the ingredients named, in grains, in one United States gallon of 231 cubic inches:

 

 

Grains.

Chloride of sodium

338.500

Chloride of potassium

16.980

Bromide of sodium

1.800

Iodide of sodium

042

Fluoride of calcium

a trace.

Bicarbonate of lithia

5.129

Bicarbonate of soda

67.617

Bicarbonate of magnesia

70.470

Bicarbonate of lime

140.260

Bicarbonate of strontia

a trace.

Bicarbonate of baryta

.992

Bicarbonate of iron

1.557

Sulphate of potassa

a trace.

Alumina

a trace.

Silica

1.280

Total solid contents in one United States gallon

644.627

 

Temperature, 40 Fah. Density, 1.006.

Carbonic acid gas in one United States gallon, 361.5 cubic inches.

------------------------------

THE EUREKA AND WHITE SULPHUR SPRING.

This spring is the property of the Eureka Spring Company, and is located a short distance beyond the Excelsior spring.

The following is an analysis of its waters by R. L. Allen, M.D., of Saratoga Springs:

 

 

Grains.

Chloride of sodium

166.811

Bicarbonate of soda

8.750

Bicarbonate of lime

41.321

Bicarbonate of magnesia

29.340

Carbonate of iron

3.000

Iodide of soda

4.666

Bromide of potassa

1.566

Silica

.532

Alumina

.231

Sulphate of magnesia

2.148

Carbonic acid

239.000

Atmospheric air

2.000

 

------------------------------

THE UNITED STATES SPRING.

is in the grounds of the Pavilion spring, and owned by the same company. Though less than ten feet from the Pavilion spring, its water is quite different in saline value. It is an alterative, and is much used mixed with wine.

The following is an analysis of its waters:

 

 

Grains.

Chloride of sodium

141.872

Chloride of potassium

8.624

Bromide of sodium

.844

Iodide of sodium

.047

Fluoride of calcium

a trace.

Bicarbonate of lithia

4.847

Bicarbonate of soda

4.666

Bicarbonate of magnesia

72.883

Bicarbonate of lime

93.119

Bicarbonate of strontia

018

Bicarbonate of baryta

.909

Bicarbonate of iron

.714

Sulphate of potassa

none.

Phosphate of soda

.016

Biborate of soda

a trace.

Alumina

.094

Silica

3.184

Organic matter

a trace.

Total grains

331.837

Carbonic acid gas

245.734 cubic inches.

Density, 1.0035, contained in U. S. gallon

231 cubic inches.

 

------------------------------

THE TRITON SPOUTING SPRING.

is a pipe-well, one hundred and ninety-two feet deep, on the east side of Geyser lake, and has the same spouting character as those near it.

------------------------------

THE MAGNETIC SPRING.

has recently been discovered just east of the High rock. It has peculiar magnetic qualities, and a small bath-house has just been built around it, where magnetic baths may be obtained.

------------------------------

THE SELTZER SPRING.

is close to High Rock spring, and in the neighborhood of the Star and Empire. Although in such close proximity thereto, its water is entirely different, thus illustrating the wonderful extent and capacity of nature's subterranean laboratory. This is the only seltzer spring in this country. The character of the water is almost identical with that of the celebrated Nassau spring of Germany, which is justly esteemed so delicious by the natives of the "Fatherland."

------------------------------

THE CRYSTAL SPRING.

This spring has the same general character of the other springs, and is said to be quite as valuable as a medical agent. It is located near the Columbian Hotel in South Broadway.

------------------------------

THE PUTNAM SPRING.

is almost wholly used for bathing purposes. It was discovered and brought into use by Gideon Putnam about the year 1800.

There are other springs of minor value scattered about through this singular country, but they have not proved themselves of so much interest, as the preceding named.

----------------------------------------

NEXT --- HOME

Transcribed from the original text and html prepared by Bill Carr, last updated 2/7/00.

Please provide me with any feedback you may have concerning errors in the transcription or any supplementary information concerning the contents. wcarr1@nycap.rr.com


Back to Saratoga County GenWeb


Copyright ©1999,2000 Bill Carr and Heritage Hunters of Saratoga County

All Rights Reserved.