Jefferson Pools

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Warm Springs Bathhouses
Jefferson Pools Gentlemen.JPG
Gentlemen's Pool House
The spa waters flow through the center of the building
Jefferson Pools is located in Virginia
Jefferson Pools
Jefferson Pools is located in the United States
Jefferson Pools
LocationNE of Warm Springs off Rt. 220, Warm Springs, Virginia
Coordinates38°3′13″N 79°46′51″W / 38.05361°N 79.78083°W / 38.05361; -79.78083Coordinates: 38°3′13″N 79°46′51″W / 38.05361°N 79.78083°W / 38.05361; -79.78083
Arealess than one acre
Built1761 (1761)
NRHP reference No.69000222[1] (original)
100004302 (increase)
VLR No.008-0007
Significant dates
Added to NRHPOctober 08, 1969
Boundary increaseAugust 20, 2019
Designated VLRNovember 5, 1968[2]

The Jefferson Pools, also called Warm Springs Bathhouses and Warm Springs Pools, are two spa structures near Warm Springs, Virginia. The name was changed in the 20th century from "Warm Spring Pools" to "Jefferson Pools". The spa is part of The Homestead, a resort hotel in nearby Hot Springs.

The Gentlemen's Pool House is the oldest spa structure in the United States. The octagonal wood building was built in 1761.[3] The spas are naturally fed by a 98 °F (37 °C) mineral spring. The men's spa holds 40,000 US gallons (150,000 L) of constantly flowing water.[4]

The Ladies' Pool House was built in 1836. The buildings have changed little over the years, being made of wood with a central pool and a roof that is open to the elements. There are small alcoves around the pool for clothes, and it is usual to bathe naked. Famous bathers include Thomas Jefferson,[3] who spent three weeks in 1819 bathing three times day and described the waters in a letter to his daughter, Martha Jefferson Randolph, as being of "first merit".[5]

The site was listed as Warm Springs Bathhouses on the Virginia Landmarks Register on November 11, 1968 and the National Register of Historic Places on October 8, 1969.[1][6]

The Jefferson Pools were ordered closed by Bath County in October 2017 due to the deteriorated condition of the bathhouses becoming a safety hazard.[7]

The owner, The Omni Homestead Resort, reports that their goal is to reopen the pools in late 2020.[8]


  1. ^ a b "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. March 13, 2009.
  2. ^ "Virginia Landmarks Register". Virginia Department of Historic Resources. Retrieved 2013-05-12.
  3. ^ a b Provence, Lisa (24 March 1999). "Springs Time: In these Virginia pools, history took a dip. You can, too". The Washington Post. p. C.09. Retrieved 24 May 2015.
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ "Virginia Landmarks Register" (PDF). Virginia Department of Historic Resources. Retrieved 25 January 2010.
  7. ^ "We have just learned that Bath County has directed The Homestead to close the Bath Houses because they are not safe". Preservation Bath. October 12, 2017. Retrieved October 12, 2017.
  8. ^

External links[edit]

Media related to Jefferson Pools at Wikimedia Commons

Ladies's Pool House on left, built 1836, with open foot spa in front and Spa Reception to right