Hot Springs Playing Cards Mural Jigsaw Puzzle



Hot Springs, Arkansas, was essentially America’s first national park, predating Yellowstone by forty years. President Andrew Jackson viewed the mineral waters in this area as a coveted natural wonder and deemed the land protected, designing it as the first federal reservation in 1832. This was the start of the Golden Era of Bathing when such waters were thought to have medicinal properties and the ailing, encouraged by their doctors, flocked to them for relief from a variety of conditions.


At first, bathing facilities were rustic, but eventually, the waters’ healing reputation combined with laws necessitating more sanitary and fireproof buildings, mandated changes. The new accommodations had to suit the destination’s nickname, “the American Spa,” and were thus appropriately opulent and imposing.

Today, visitors can stroll down historic Bathhouse Row right in the heart of the town of Hot Springs. Eight ornate buildings, each with a different architectural style, are the marquee attraction in the National Park. They were constructed between the years 1892 and 1923 and include Fordyce, Buckstaff, Quapaw, Lamar, Superior, Hale, Ozark, and Maurice.

Among those who came to Hot Springs, Arkansas, years ago to experience the purported curative powers of the thermal waters were numerous notable gangsters, outlaws, and Major League Baseball players. The infamous figures, in particular, were attracted to the area, not only because of its reputation as a wellness mecca but also because there was plenty of entertainment available at the gambling establishments, clubs, and brothels. Pick your vice!

Hot Springs offered Las Vegas amenities before there was even a Las Vegas. Most importantly, these men knew that the town officials and police often looked the other way when it came to questionable activities. The gangsters were welcomed, and their actions were tolerated because they spent lots of money during their visits, were friendly to the locals, and some even engaged in charitable endeavors.

Enjoy the above podcast with Tiffany Bertram who along with her husband Bob, own and run Tiffany’s B&B just outside Hot Springs, Arkansas, and read the full story about Hot Springs (excerpt above) by travel writer Debbie Stone on

JIGSAW PUZZLE TIPSListen to the interview while you piece together this online jigsaw puzzle of the Hot Springs Playing Cards Mural by Texas artists Chris Arnold and Jeff Garrison. This mural honors five iconic baseball greats — Honus Wagner, Babe Ruth, Jackie Robinson, Satchel Paige and Lefty Grove, all who had intimate ties to Hot Springs in the late 19th and 20th Centuries when the city was known worldwide as the place where Major League players got ready for the baseball season. Use the full screen icon to make it easier. Use your mouse roller or arrow keys to rotate the puzzle pieces and click and drag to put the pieces in place. Use the Image Icon to see the picture and the Ghost Icon to set your workspace.





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