Bottling the Water.
It should be remembered that the water of this spring is sold in bottles only. What purports to be Congress water for sale on draught in various places throughout the country is not genuine. The artificial preparations thus imposed upon the public may have a certain resemblance in taste and appearance, but are frequently worse than worthless for medicinal purposes.
In Congress Park, under the Grecian Dome, near the Congress spring, Congress and Empire Spring Co., proprietors.
[Illustration: COLUMBIAN SPRING.]
History and Peculiarities.
This spring was opened in 1806 by Gideon Putnam. The water issues from the natural rock about seven feet below the surface of the ground, and is protected by heavy wooden tubing. It is the most popular spring among the residents of Saratoga. The escaping bubbles of free carbonic acid gas give to the fountain a boiling motion. Large quantities of the gas can easily be collected at the mouth of the spring at any time.
It is a fine chalybeate or iron water, possessing strong tonic properties. It also has a diuretic action and is extensively used for that purpose. The water is recommended to be drank in small quantities frequently during the day, generally preceded by the use of the cathartic waters taken before breakfast.
Only from one-half to one glass should be taken at a time. When taken in large quantities or before breakfast its effects might remind one of that great race in northern and central Europe,—the Teutonic (too tonic). A peculiar headache would certainly be experienced.
The proper use of this water is found to strengthen the tone of the stomach and to increase the red particles of the blood which, according to Liebeg, perform an important part in respiration. It has been proved by actual experiments that the number of red particles of the blood may be doubled by the use of preparations of iron.
Though containing but 3.26 grains of iron in one gallon of water—Prof. Chandler’s analysis—it is an evident and remarkable fact that the water thus weakly impregnated has a most perceptible iron taste in every drop. Is it much to be wondered at, then, that a mineral which has so extensive a power of affecting the palate, should possess equally extensive influence over the whole system? Many minerals in a dilute state of solution may pass easily through the absorbents, while in a more concentrated state they may be excluded. Carbonic acid gas, for instance, when diluted is readily inhaled, but when concentrated acts in a peculiar manner upon the wind-pipe so as to prevent its admission. So the happy medicinal effects of these iron waters seem to consist—to some extent—in the minute division of the mineral properties so that they are readily taken into the system.