Built atop Siloam Spring, Excelsior Springs’ Hall of Waters was the site of bottling operations for several decades.
Completed in 1937, the Art Deco building replaced several previous structures that once stood containing the Ferro-manganese spring water well discovered in 1880. Funded by a WPA grant, the city of Excelsior Springs took over ownership in 1935 and began construction of a new, larger structure that featured The World’s Longest Water Bar and a basement level bottling plant that produced up to 40,000 bottles of mineral water labeled under the Excelsior Springs Mineral Water System, as indicated with this 7 ounce embossed glass water bottle.
Waters of nearby Regent Spring were bottled and shipped by the Excelsior Springs Bottling Co., which also used the spring water to create Soterian Ginger Ale. Earning a gold medal during a contest held at the 1904 World’s Fair in St. Louis, the award brought additional fame to Excelsior Springs and its 40 documented natural springs. Founded in 1894, the business ceased operations years prior to the opening of the Hall of Waters bottling facility.
Deemed as a boost for health-seekers, the waters at Excelsior Springs were analyzed in 1890 by Dr. W.P. Mason of the Resslear Polytechnic Institute who endorsed its use “to that large class of patients whose worn-out systems need speedy and vigorous restoration”.
The bottling operations at the Hall of Waters were closed by the Missouri State Health Agency in 1971 due to the lack of automation to ensure sanitation as the bottles were still being filled and capped by hand. Automated equipment was acquired but the bottling operation was moved to a building just south of the Hall of Waters.
The production of glass bottles bearing the Mineral Water Systems and Hall of Waters wordage ended in the 1990’s. Currently, no mineral water, either fresh samples or bottled, is available at the Hall of Waters, but the Visitor Center (201 S. Broadway) is open daily to showcase the history of mineral water in Excelsior Springs.