Mazes and Marvels - Hotels and Sanitariums


Putting the best foot first, the Evans, commodious, palatial, and inviting, takes precedence. Erected from solid walls of pink sandstone at the enormous cost of nearly a quarter of a million dollars, it resembles the fabled "Palace of the Gods." No modern convenience has been omitted in its construction and operation. Steam heated, electric lighted, luxuriously furnished, and provided with elevators, the Evans has no apologies to offer. Its menu offers the best that money can buy. It accommodates 350 guests at reasonable rates.

The Evans Sanitarium stands as a helpmeet to the colossal hotel. Possessing every appliance ingenuity can dictate, it offers unsurpassed advantages incident to its field. Medicated baths, needle baths, silver, vapor, and Turkish baths are at your option. It is open also to persons not guests at the hotel.

The Gillespie, just across the bridge from the Evans, is also a modern structure, conveniently located and attractive, presenting an excellent view of Fall River, Battle Mountain, and the adjacent hills. It is run on the American and European plan, and accommodates 200 guests. Rooms range from $.25 to $1.00 per day.

The Hot Springs Hotel offers excellent accommodations, with a cuisine that bespeaks generosity on the part of the management. It accommodates 90 guests. Rates $1.00 to $1.50 per day. Its proximity to the Minnekahta Bath House gives it a unique position.

The Minnekahta, located in the rear of the Hot Springs Hotel, was the original spring used by the Indians, and the one which brought fame to the Minnekahta or Fall River valley. The temperature of the water is abut 98 degrees, and seems to effect the miraculous when applied to human ills.

The word Minnekahta is Indian and means "hot water" (Minne-water; kahta-hot). Before being changed to Hot Springs, the town was called Minnekahta. Far to the eastward, the Indian Medicine Man pointed to the Black Hills and prescribed for his patient a trip to Minnekahta, where health flowed in torrents from the foot of the mountain.

The Hiawatha Hotel and Black Hills Sanitarium have the reputation of being a panacea for all ills. More than 200 guests can be accommodated. Rates $2.00 to $2.50 per day.

There are other hotels and sanitariums quite deserving, but space forbids lengthy individual mention, such as the Stewart Bath House, the Sulphur Springs Bath House, the Siloam Bath House, the Hotel Fargo, the Huebner, Mower, Clifton, Davis, Williams, Minnelusa, Ferguson, and Palace hotels, ranging from $1.00 to $2.00 per day.

The Hygeia Springs, located across the bridge from the Evans and a few rods south of the Gillespie, are doubtless the most popular for drinking purposes in the entire circuit of springs. All day long groups of people may be seen wending their way toward these springs, named in honor of Hygeia, the Goddess of health and daughter of Aesculapius. Rustic seats are close at hand where the health-seeker rests between drinks. This water is shipped, as well as the restoring of their health, have resolved to drink no other.

The Plunge Bath is probably remembered longest by a majority of people. Here a luxury is offered which surpasses sea bathing. The water ranging from 4 ½ to 9 feet, is clear as crystal and very buoyant, being heavily charged with minerals. With a temperature of about 96 degrees, no warming or cooling is required, for the water comes forth properly prepared from the laboratory of nature. The basin is 50 x 200 feet, the water changing every 35 minutes, being fed by numerous springs. Every appliance is provided that the bathers' pleasure may demand. A spring-board, a rope, a float, and the never-to-be-forgotten toboggan slide are free to all, the only charge being $.25 for the use of a dressing room and the bathing privilege. Bathing suits are rented at the office at an additional charge of $.25 to all who come unsupplied. Those who visit Hot Springs and fail to visit the plunge baths miss "an Elysium more pure and bright than that of the Greeks."

Last updated: April 10, 2015

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Mailing Address:

26611 US Highway 385
Hot Springs, SD 57747


(605) 745-4600

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