The history of Summit Spring

Summit Spring is one of the oldest natural spring sources in North America with records dating over 228 years. Historical references to the source pre-date the incorporation of the town of Harrison and the State of Maine itself. In the 1800s Summit Spring was sold as a healing tonic, claiming to relieve a host of common maladies from arthritis and kidney disease, to anxiety disorders.

Soon, word spread about this natural borne elixir, and in 1881, Summit Spring was included in Myers, Suter + Co.’s Book of Cures. It wasn’t long before the water became distributed all across the United States and even to Europe.

By 1888, a 55-room hotel was built near the spring and booked solid each summer with tourists from New York and Boston desiring to drink and bathe in the magical healing waters.

While we can’t guarantee any magic, we encourage you to pick up a bottle of Summit Spring for a taste of the most refreshing water nature can produce.

We can trace our history back more than 220 years – but you don’t have to take our word for it, we’ll let our visitors speak for themselves.

To drink of God’s only beverage for man or beast at Summit Spring, that fountain of life, the drinking from which will renew the youth of the old, if any such a place was ever created.
—Harrison, Maine Centennial Celebrations, 1905

History of Summit Spring Water as the Water Summit of Quality logo
History of Summit Spring Water as a "tonic"

It is on a summit (from which the water derives its name) nearly 1,000 feet above the sea, overlooking 2,000 square miles of mountain, forest, field and lake. The spring is a natural wonder, and will well repay a visit, but the water will do its work wherever drank. From farm to farm its reputation spread, then to neighboring villages, and soon to leading cities. The value of this water as a remedial agent has abundantly been proved by those who has had the occasion to use it, hence it does not require any comments from me.
—F.L. Bartlett, Maine State Assayer, April 1881

There is no need to double up in pain, to sit by while others enjoy the best of health. Life is worth living. What makes this treatment especially attractive is that you do not load yourself with drugs and other harmful preparations that cause untold grief and harm to your system.
—Summit Spring Hotel Brochure on Hot Mineral Baths. Early 1900s.

This marvelous spring is one of the wonders of Maine. It flows into its basin at the edge of the forest nearly 1,000 feet above sea level, at the uniform rate of 38 gallons a minute with an unvarying temperature of 46 degrees winter and summer. Summit Spring water is of the utmost value in the treatment of kidney and of kindred troubles such as neuritis, rheumatism and that run-down condition. For fifty years it has held a high repute as a safe remedial agent for gravel, gall stones and Bright’s disease.
—Summit Spring Hotel Brochure. Early 1900s.

History of Summit Mineral Spring Water Eagle logo

The Summit Spring Eagle

The eagle in our logo pays homage to Summit Hill’s historical reputation as a breeding ground for eagles. At nearly 1,000 ft above sea level, it is the highest point in Cumberland County, Maine, and no wonder these majestic raptors chose it for their home.