Saratoga Springs is known for health, history, horses and so much more. Let's take a closer look at the city and surrounding area using the records from the Archives! Interested in more detail? Search our finding aids and Digital Collections to discover Saratoga in the records.
The area around Saratoga was once a tropical ocean basin. Nearly 500,000 years later, you can walk that ocean floor at the State Museum's exhibit at Lester Park. You can also see informative, often beautiful images in the Dept. of Conservation prints & negatives.
The core of the city's fame is a series of carbonated, mineral-rich springs renowned for their health benefits. The springs' source can be traced back to that ancient tropical ocean & the development of the Saratoga geological fault, illustrated in this 1924 slide from our Instructional Lantern Slide Collection.
At the turn of the 19th century, people from around the world sought "the cure" to alleviate a host of ailments. Each of the public springs had its own unique taste & perceived healing powers. The State Drink Hall, pictured here in 1920, was both a source of the cure and a place to be seen.
The "cure" included drinking specific mineral waters, hydrotherapy treatments, mineral baths and a dose of clean, fresh air. This 1920 view of the hydrotherapy room at the Washington Bathhouse is a little intimidating, but by 1927 the State-operated bathhouses gave over 90,000 treatments per year!
In 1872, local businessmen began bottling "Saratoga Vichy." The business boomed with advances in automated bottling, as pictured here. Saratoga Springs Water Co. operates today with a few modern twists. Most notably, the source spring has a lower mineral content and thus a milder taste.
The significance of professional horse racing is illustrated in this aerial view of the city's east side. In it you can easily see the Saratoga Race Track, Oklahoma practice track, the Saratoga Harness Track and a privately owned training track all within a stones throw of Northway exit 14.
The No. 4 School at 112 Spring St. was built in 1911 to support a growing community. The city's focus on education is evidenced in several archival series including historical sketches, created by the Education Dept. to document the establishment of the first school or school district in a city.
The 1777 Battle of Saratoga represented a strategic victory for continental forces and a turning point in the American Revolution. You can explore the Saratoga Battlefield just 15 miles outside the city or browse Dept. of Conservation images documenting the park's conservation.