William Turner, a retired community college professor and current historian for Christian County, spoke before the marker was unveiled about the location’s legacy.
The Cerulean Springs Hotel was a popular vacation spot and health resort at his peak, which Turner said was from about 1880 to 1920. People came from all over the South and even the country to drink the water and relax at the hotel. Drinking the water was supposed to be good for many things, including constipation, diarrhea, gastric problems and skin rashes.
Turner described the hotel as an amazing social place where people would go buggy riding, dancing, bowling and play tennis and croquet. The place was especially popular after the railroads made it easier for people to travel there.
Unfortunately, all that began to change after the automobile industry started to flourish. The resort began declining in popularity because people had more options of where to go, Turner said. Then, on Aug. 29, 1925, the 72-room giant burned to the ground. Although the dancing pavilion and bowling alley remained unharmed, the hotel was the life of the place. The owners didn’t have insurance and there was no effort to rebuild.
Although there is still is no hotel, Wallace Blakeley said he deeply wanted people to remember the spring’s glorious past. Blakely is a descendent of the Blakeley family that originally settled in Cerulean at the same time as the Goodwin family, he said. He went to Turner, who is actually his third cousin, in February with the hope of finding some way to honor the past. Blakeley said he went to Turner because he thought Turner would have the know-how to get things done.
For the rest of this story, read this week's Cadiz Record.