• water flowing over rocks into basin

    Hot Springs

    National Park Arkansas

There are park alerts in effect.
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  • RFP for Maurice and Libbey Bathhouses

    Requests for Proposals for the Maurice and Libbey Bathhouses are being accepted from 7/7/14 to 1/30/15. Click on the "Management" link in the left column for more information.

  • Elevator closure

    Hot Springs National Park regrets to announce that the elevator in the Fordyce Visitor Center is closed for maintenance. The upper and lower levels are accessible only by stairways. The elevator will be placed back into service in about 4 to 6 weeks.

History & Culture

Historic photo from HOSP archives

Rector Bathhouse, 1870s

National Park Service image from HOSP archives

Hot Springs National Park has a long and colorful history, beginning long before its designation as Hot Springs Reservation in 1832. American Indians came here for thousands of years to quarry novaculite for their tools and weapons. The Dunbar-Hunter Expedition came here in 1804, sent by President Thomas Jefferson to explore the southern reaches of the Louisiana Purchase. Soon a bustling town grew up around the hot springs to provide services for health seekers. The resultant bathing industry led to Hot Springs becoming known as the "American Spa."

 
 
 
 

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Did You Know?

copy of lithograph from a publication showing the valley of the hot springs with Hot Springs Creek on the right and two men in the foregroun

Hot Springs Reservation, the first designation of Hot Springs National Park, was set aside by Congress in 1832. This makes Hot Springs National Park the oldest unit in the national park system, 40 years older than Yellowstone National Park.