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Thursday, July 21, 2016

Walking Around Historic Ballston Spa, New York with John & Carol

A bubbling spring was found in 1771 when a survey crew was calculating the boundaries of the Kayaderosseras Patent.  This spring, in the Village of Ballston Spa, was the first mineral spring discovered in America.  By the late 1780s, a hotel had been built for guests to stay in while they "took the cure."

Success breeds success... Ballston Spa was the place to go to enjoy the bubbling waters. More hotels were built.  In the 1800s, rail lines ran to Ballston Spa, bringing more tourists than ever and raw materials to the mills along the waterway in the village.  Trains departing the village returned visitors to their homes and took finished products to market.  

Today Eric, John, Carol & I 
are walking around Ballston Spa, 
admiring the village's many 
historic buildings.  

Carol brought a copy of "In A Pleasant Situation" Five Walking Tours To Explore the Architecture and History of Ballston Spa with her to provide information on the buildings we see today.  

Building, constructed in
1873, now houses the
Village's Government

John, Carol & Eric
stand in front of this
resplendent building.

Bank was built around 1820,
in the Late Federal Style.

The Art Nouveau Clock was
added in 1926.

Ballston Spa National Bank is the oldest bank in Saratoga County.  

95 Front Street was built
around 1830.

The stepped gables & paired
chimneys are features of the
Late Federal Style.

This Federal Style home at
99 Front Street was built
around 1815.

A Griffin guards the entrance
to the garden at
109-111 Front Street.

This house was built in the 
 with a Mansard Roof.

The Old Iron Spring Pavilion
sits over the well that taps into
the village's original spring.

Old Iron Spring's water
is available to all.

Ballston Spa's tunnels...

Gordon Creek flows through
the tunnel on the left.

The tunnel on the right was built
to allow easy access of village
workers to the park on their
lunch hours.

Abner Doubleday, Union General
commemorated with this 
marker at Iron Spring Park.

in 1792, is listed on the National
Registry of Historic Places.
These four wood frame houses are at an odd angle to Fairground Avenue.
They were built along a street that no longer exists.

The Medbery Inn & Spa,
built in 1804, remains a
popular hotel in downtown
Ballston Spa.

dedicated in 1888.

St. Mary's Church

The spire dominates

This tiny yellow house is the

The small protrusions on the
roof line of buildings are
owls...  installed to scare
off birds.

These pigeons don't frighten.

O'Brien Pharmacy has a charming
summer window display with 
over-sized ants invading a

I love Coffee Planet's colorful
corner entrance.

Ballston Spa is home to

 Church has a distinctive side

John & Carol take us to The Factory,
located in the former Union Mill
Complex, for lunch.

Once a mill, these buildings housed different industries over the years, including a company that manufactured the first flat bottom paper bags.  Locals fondly remember the sweet chocolate smells emanating from this building when it was Bischoff's Chocolate factory.

This old industrial complex now
houses shops & offices, in
addition to The Factory.

Today's walk is just one of five walking tours in the village.  There's a lot more history to explore here.  John and Carol are happy to share their community with Eric and me.  

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