Our Stories Resort Blog

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


The Apollo Nameplate: From Buried to Revived

Apollos Spring
pollo — er, well, “Apoll”, still minus the O — is back home once again.

You might remember this story from back in 2018, and here’s a little update that’s fitting to share as we start to wind down Preservation Month during the month of May at French Lick Resort.

Long story short: Four years ago, we made an unexpected discovery during construction work in the West Baden Springs Hotel formal gardens. While excavating underground, we unearthed the original stone nameplate from the Apollo Spring where guests “took the waters” during the hotel’s initial heyday in the early 1900s.

old photo of Apollo Spring

This old postcard and historic photo paint a little clearer picture of what this Apollo Spring once looked like and how it was used.

postcard of Apollo Spring

To access the springs, guest would descend several steps and walk under the nameplate to go beneath the gazebo structure. Here, there was a basin where the water came from the springs. There would have been a common dipper, or maybe a couple, for guests to help themselves to the mineral waters that could supposedly cure nearly any disease or affliction.



broken stone of Apollo building

When the hotel originally closed in the 1930s and the building became a Jesuit seminary, the Jesuits capped and filled in the springs with concrete. The gazebo portion remained — and still does today — but the 6-feet wide by 2-feet thick “Apollo” nameplate got taken down and flipped over. It sat underground, letter side facing down, until we stumbled on it in 2018.

Doesn’t look too bad for being buried for possibly more than 80 years, huh?

Apollo Gazebo


Clover from Apollo Sign in museum
We’ve recently moved the Apollo stone to sit just outside the Apollo gazebo once again. If you compare the then-and-now photos, you can see it’s displayed in just about the exact spot where we found it underground. The right edge of the nameplate was never found. Hence the O that’s MIA. But one of the decorative clovers that broke off was able to be preserved, and it’s one of the featured items in the new West Baden Springs Hotel Museum that just opened.

Crazy to think how much history there is here at French Lick Resort. Both on the surface, and sometimes even below.



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