Poland Spring: A Tale of the Gilded Age, 1860-1900 (Revisiting New England)
David L. RichardsISBN: 1584654821;
Between 1860 and 1900 the Ricker family's rustic frontier farm became the world-renowned summer community of Poland Spring, Maine, a middle landscape where upper-middle-class patrons and their urban values of status, leisure, and consumption confronted, flirted with, embraced and ultimately subsumed traditional, rural New England. First and foremost a cultural study, Poland Spring chronicles the rise of a nineteenth-century tourist mecca. By successfully linking its fortunes to the railroad and tourism, Poland Spring became home to both a classic manifestation of the magnificent Victorian summer hotel culture of the Northeast, the Poland Spring House, and to the legendary business that originated one of the most popular and enduring brands in the mineral water marketplace, the eponymous Poland Spring. This complex story represents a fascinating microcosm of the blossoming of the vacation trade and tourism in nineteenth-century New England, the emergence of the "springs"...