Friday, July 10, 2015

Drink to Your Health A Quick View of Indian Springs State Park by PEN





 
I would warn you not to drink the water. But, if you visit Indian Springs, chances are the water is the reason you came. 

Before white man even considered setting foot upon this land, Native Americans benefitted from the proposed healing waters of Indian Springs. More than likely, though, those Native Americans – Creek Indians, to be precise – knew it by some form of the word Okfuskee; a word which, apparently, only the Creek Indians know the meaning of. 

Indian Springs is one of the oldest – if not the oldest – park in the Georgia State Park system. Sadly, it became the first as a result of an act of treason by Creek Indian Chief William McIntosh. 

On behalf of the Creek Indians, McIntosh signed a treaty which deeded a good deal of land between the Flint and Chattahoochee rivers to Georgia. He was assassinated a few short months later. 

Little time was wasted in creating a state park of Indian Springs. Rumors of the healing properties of the water were a fascination for people and drew visitors from all around. The ghastly smell and taste of the water – a sulphuric, “rotton egg” aroma and flavor – doesn’t deter those seeking its supposed healing properties. Visitors from all over bring gallon and five-gallon jugs to fill with the water from Indian Springs. 

The unique aroma and flavor of the water is a result of minerals from rock being picked up by water flowing through. The mineral-laden water eventually ends up collecting in pools until pressure forces the water to the surface via the spring. 

During my own childhood, my father would rouse the family early on Sunday mornings to head down south for the day. First, we’d visit peach orchards to pick some fruit to take home. Then we’d visit Indian Springs for a swig or two of the water. After that, we’d head over to Jackson, Georgia for Fresh Air Bar-B-Que. (See PEN's post June 22, 2015)
 
Tasting the water isn’t the only thing to do at Indian Springs. You can wade in Sandy Creek or swim in McIntosh Lake (named for the aforementioned traitor). There are also a museum and campsites, hiking and a ¾-mile nature trail. 

If you want to experience any water activities on Indian Springs Lake, go prior to September 2015. The lake will be drained to replace a gate valve and will remain dry through February 2016. 

And if you do visit Indian Springs, raise a glass to your health. 

Park Hours: 7 a.m. – 10 p.m. 
Office Hours: 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. 
$5 parking. Annual passes available.

Indian Springs State Park
678 Lake Clark Rd,
Flovilla, GA 30216
(770) 504-2277
 
To learn more about Indian Springs State Park and see a list of events, visit http://www.gastateparks.org/IndianSprings.
 
 
vintage postcard
 
 
 
 
Pen is a native Georgian and self-published author. Visit her website or check out her latest novel Nero’s Fiddle.