Our Stories Resort Blog

Dig a little deeper into stories about our history, unique guest features, and what’s happening around the resort.


Notes From the Past, Hiding in West Baden Springs Hotel Library

April 07, 2022
West Baden Springs Hotel Library

We get it — you won’t have time to read “Moby Dick” cover to cover or get through all of “The Sound and the Fury” during your stay here. Even so, you’ll want to make a point to stop inside the library at West Baden Springs Hotel for a peek at what’s hiding within these shelves.

Everything at West Baden drips with that Old World feel, especially in the stately library (located just off the lobby) which feels like something out of the “Clue” board game come to life. And maybe that’s why it’s become a quirky tradition for guests to hide notes inside the books on the wall. With so much history here, after all, this is a way for visitors to leave their mark and be a part of our history.

hands writing a letter

To rewind a bit…..

A few years back, one of our hotel managers was tidying up in the library and noticed a few books in poor condition. A closer look revealed a few of the books contained notes. A few were dated back to about five years prior, in 2012.

Apparently, word spread.

letter from wife to husband in book


letter next to books
Today, you can crack open just about any one of the hundreds of titles on these shelves and find a handwritten message from past guests. Some books even contain small stacks of notes. Everything’s worth reading. Because you’ll find anything and everything.

Love letters. Treasure hunts with clues directing the finder to locate the next note. Ongoing exchanges with dozens of people adding their own name and message. Others are … shall we say, a little spicy and not exactly PG-rated.








hand written letter in pages of book

Oliver WIlde quote
You might find an inspirational message: “You can do hard things. With kindness too.” Or something silly and creative. Big fan of this one: “1912, September 13th. I have been lost in this library for yon 6 months. My Mam and Pa have given me up for lost. I’ve nothing to eat but books this many long weeks. I miss fruit. Billy, age 9.”

It’d be fun to know who wrote the first note in these books and what inspired it. But the mystery seems fitting here at West Baden and French Lick, which have long histories that sometimes more incredible than fiction. It’s cool to imagine another hundred years from now, someone cracking open these books and finding a message written *all the way back* in 2022.




note in book

When you visit, maybe jot your own note and add to the history. Oh, and if you’re feeling ambitious, we left a note of our own for you to find. Your hint: this one isn’t too much of a stretch, and if you’re feeling funky you can easily find it chilling on the shelf.

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