Vacation in French Lick and West Baden Indiana close to Indiana University and the historic Brown County Indiana artists colony


historic restoration French Lick Indiana got its name from early French settlers and the “mineral licks” in the area. French traders came to the area and discovered the mineral springs bubbling from the ground in the vicinity of what is now French Lick. Wildlife came to lick the mineral deposits left on the ground and rocks. In the early 1800's settlers began to bottle and sell the "Pluto Water" from the springs. In the early 1800's Doc Bowles built the first hotel, a three story frame building. The community thrived and there was an influx of tourist traffic coming to drink and soak in the mineral waters. In the 1850's French Lick was a key station in the "underground railway". The French Lick Springs Resort and Spa was built in the late 1800's. Tom Taggert purchased the property in 1901 and, with the help of the Monon Railroad, the former Indianapolis mayor turned the sleepy little resort into an international attraction.

Many hoosiers traveled to French Lick by train. The old train depot remains in downtown French Lick.

Today French Lick and West Baden remain a favorite hoosier vacation destination along with Brown County Indiana.

Historic Brown County Indiana Art is now on display in West Baden, on loan from the Brown County Art Gallery.

french lick resort Historically visitors arrived by train from Chicago, as well as Cincinnati, Louisville & St. Louis. They came to gamble, golf, soak in the hot springs and enjoy the natural beauty of the area. Today, visitors still come to gamble, golf, enjoy the spas and the natural beauty of southern Indiana. French Lick and West Baden, near Paoli and Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana.

French Lick boasted golf, tennis, croquet, and baseball. A gambling casino was located just between the Pluto and Proserpine Springs and provided bowling alleys, a gym, and billiard tables. A dancing pavilion, enclosed in glass was one of the largest in the county at that time. The woodlands surrounding the are povided hiking trails for those taking their daily "constitutional."

French Lick and West Baden, in southern Indiana, are just a day trip away from the historic artists colony of Nashville, Indiana.

west baden resort Today, the French Lick Springs Resort and West Baden Springs Hotel have undergoing a $350 million historic restoration and expansion. The resort reopened as French Lick Springs Resort & Casino in November 2006 to include 440 fully renovated rooms along with the casino, new event center, new restaurants, exciting retail shops, and fully restored public areas. Lake Patoka and Paoli Peaks ski area are modern additions to the area.

The West Baden Springs Hotel re-opened with 246 luxurious hotel rooms and fine dining. The resorts' spas have been fully renovated and the historic Hill Golf Course will soon be restored to its original design.

French Lick & West Baden Indiana are a quaint little towns with historical interest:

French Lick Hotels

French Lick Gambling

West Baden Springs

French Lick Railroad Museum

Ski Paoli Peaks in Southern Indiana

Pluto Water Advertising

French Lick Indiana Winery

French Lick Indiana Radio Station