It’s a thing of legend: off a back-country road in rural South Carolina, a natural spring draws a crowd.
Don Still, a historian in the small town of Blackville, says: “The Healing Springs of Blackville: there’s too many people that come here and carry water away. There’s got to be something to this water.”
It’s something alright. Just ask around.
One man who traveled from North Augusta says: “We come every month, every month. Once a month. I’ve been doing it for over 30 to 40 years now.”
A woman who traveled from Columbia adds: “Nothing like fresh, cold water. It’s like this here during the summer months, winter months.”
“It has like a sulfur taste to it,” added the North Augusta man. “A sweet taste. Like a sweet taste to it.”
The taste of the water isn’t the only thing that keeps people coming back for a refill.
“God’s Little Acre is what they called it,” said Still. “During the Revolutionary War, the English had 4 or 5 soldiers that were injured, and they figured that they weren’t going to live to get back to Charleston so they just left them there down at the springs. They thought surely they’d be dead in a short while. They drank the water and they got better and then all of them returned to Charleston.”
And so, the legend of the healing springs was born. But that’s not the only tale about the water’s mysterious powers.
“I’ve heard the farmer say well all you have to do is put Healing Spring water in your radiator in your tractor if it’s leaking and what will it do to it, it’ll stop it from leaking,” said Still. “The minister from Greenville came down and got a gallon of water. The water had turned to wine. So we don’t know whether that’s true or not.”
Even still, some truly believe in the water’s healing power.
Ricky Boyd of Augusta said: “It’s good for your health. I have diabetes and high blood pressure and since I’ve been drinking this water, my medicine I have cut back on a lot. I can tell a whole improvement health-wise.”
“It must be something or people wouldn’t be driving from Columbia or Charleston up here to get the water,” added Still. “You see out of state licenses of people out here. There’s something to it no question.”
All you have to do is believe.