Minnesota’s Magic Healing Mud Spa – Mudbaden, MN
Imagine getting your cart stuck in mud in the 1890s in south central Minnesota. Then imagine smelling rotten eggs as you work to get your cart out of the dense thick mud. Sounds like a tough spot to be in right? Well yes and no, it would stink to be stuck in the mud with your cart surrounded by the scent of rotten eggs, one man though that smell and muck meant one thing...money! That was the birth of the Mudbaden Sulphur Springs Company in Scott County.
According to the Minnesota Historical Society, Mudbaden Sulphur Springs was discovered at the turn of the last century on land owned by Ole Rosendahl, a Minneapolis millwright who lived in Scott County, present-day off Highway 63 in Sand Creek Township. Rosendahl ended up turning his home there into a spa resort, which attracted both vacationers and patients to experience the healing properties "for ailments from rheumatism and high blood pressure to liver disease and gout."
At the time of the stuck cart discovery stories about medical spas in Germany that used sulfur-rich mud to treat joint and muscle conditions were popular in newspapers across the county, which led to Rosendahl to creating the spa.
According to the website Forgotten Minnesota, up to 125 patients could stay at Mudbaden and up to 200 could receive treatment a day. The health spa operated until 1947.
The building still stands and is used as a training facility for law enforcement.