Hot Springs National Park

Woman collecting water from a public fountain in Hot Springs National Park.

Many national parks have a lot of open spaces. Often there are few buildings inside a national park. This is not true at Hot Springs National Park. This park is inside a city. In fact, the city of Hot Springs, Arkansas, was built around the national park. It was built to take care of all the guests who came to use the hot springs.

What is so special about the hot springs? People have been using the hot waters here for hundreds of years. The water is used to relax and to treat illnesses. This land became part of the United States in 1803. It was part of the Louisiana Purchase. The new settlers quickly learned of this natural resource. They decided they had to protect it. They asked the government for help. In 1832, President Jackson set this land aside for public use. It was the first time that happened in our country's history.

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