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Colfax, in western Jasper County, developed initially as a shipping point on the Chicago, Rock Island, and Pacific Railroad and as a developing center for the mining of coal. With the discovery of mineral spring water in the area in the mid-1870s, Colfax entrepreneurs began to export this new product. By the early 1900s, it was noted, “The town is made famous by its mineral springs and has become a great health resort, and its mineral waters are bottled and shipped to all parts of the country, and also in bulk.” 12At that time Colfax, by then known as “the Carlsbad of Iowa,” boasted nine hotels, the largest of which and the only one now left was the 150-room Hotel Carlsbad.


Huebinger, Atlas of the State of Iowa, 325.

Writing Credits

David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim

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