Fordyce Bathhouse Visitor Center Closed
The Fordyce Bathhouse Visitor Center is closed until Fall 2013 for a major maintenance project. A temporary park Visitor Center, along with the park store, are located in the Lamar Bathhouse at the south end of Bathhouse Row. Call for more information.
Administration Building Video
I'm ranger Mark Blaeuer at Hot Springs National Park. We are at the south end of the National Historic Landmark District; we do have a plaque over here to indicate that. It became an NHL in 1987, and the Administration Building, here, actually opened in 1936. It was the latest of the buildings to go up on present-day Bathhouse Row. It started out as not just an administration building but the visitor center/museum for the park, a function that it held until 1989 when the museum and visitor center operations went down to the newly rehabilitated Fordyce Bathhouse. It was designed in 1936 by Charles Peterson and Thomas Vint of the Park Service's Eastern Planning Division. Peterson especially liked Spanish architecture; this is Spanish Colonial Revival. You have the clay tiles on a hip roof up there-you can just see the edges of them-and the wrought iron grilles on the first floor windows. Both French doors have five lights on them, coming out from second floor level to wrought iron balconies. And in the middle here, the most impressive feature is probably the Spanish Baroque doors with the pilasters, and frieze, cornice, and large finials above that. The building does have one other function: in the basement there is a pump room and reservoir to help distribute the thermal spring water.
Did You Know?
The Public Health Service operated a venereal disease clinic in the Government Free Bathhouse (1922-1948) in Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas. It was one of the first facilities in the United States to use penicillin. In 1948, the clinic transferred to the nearby Camp Garraday Transient Camp.