Berkeley Springs, West Virginia

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By John Cowgill

Berkeley Springs is a small town in the northeastern part of West Virginia. It’s the county seat of Morgan County and sits in a valley.

When the town was formed, it was originally called Bath after the famous city in England.  The Native Americans came to this very place for healing. The name ‘Berkeley Springs’ come from actual springs.  Native Americans came from as far as what is now the Carolinas and the Great Lakes regions to feel the waters of these springs. Years later, a young man named George Washington came here and discovered the springs.  He later built his bathtub here and bathed here when he was in the region.  Later, two bath houses were built here: one for men and one for women.  People came to what was later named Berkeley Springs to bathe in the waters.

Berkeley Springs State Park is located in the heart of town, where one can see George Washington’s actual bathtub. There is also a spa on site; massages are available in a private room. At the old men’s bath house (currently being renovated), visitors can sit in a bath.

For more information and to make a reservation for some spa treatment at ‘America’s First Spa,’ click here.  Bring some empty water bottles to get water from the springs.  The state park is located on U.S. 522 and West Virginia Route 9, across from the county courthouse.  Parking is metered street parking.

George Washington’s bathtub, Berkeley Springs


John Cowgill ( loves to visit historic places to include lesser known sites.  He loves taking road trips, and he loves railroads.  You can also follow him on Facebook at ‘John Cowgill: Photographic Journeys’ and John Cowgill: DC Railroad Examiner.  You can also check out ‘John Cowgill: Stories of the Railroad’ at



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