Monday, August 20, 2007

Buckhorn Baths

In 1939 Ted and Alice Sliger established the baths unknowing that their efforts to make a living of the natural mineral waters would help to establish the East Salt River Valley as a mecca for spring training. In 1947, the New York Giants made the Buckhorn Baths their spring training home and continued to do so for over twenty-five years. Willie Mays, Ty Cobb, Gaylord Perry, Leo Durocher and others were regulars at the Baths. The Sligers established a post office, bus stop, water hole, museum, and motel, which they operated for over sixty-five years.

Also known as the Buckhorn Mineral Wells and Wildlife Museum, the latter moniker due to an immense taxidermy collection, the baths have been closed for years. Ted has passed away and Alice is a century old. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the location of the Buckhorn Baths makes it a prime target for development, and speculation is rampant that this part of Mesa and Arizona’s early history will soon be replaced by a Wal-Mart.

[For more information, contact Ronald L. Peters, Mesa Historic Preservation Commission, at 480-833-6066 or e-mail.]

September 2007 Update: