The Valley of Heart's Delight

Santa Clara County


The now well-known Madrone Mineral Springs are situated in Burnett township, about twenty-five mils south-east from San Jose, in the Coast Range, at an altitude of two thousand feet, and located in a sheltered and picturesque canon at the foot of the Pine Ridge.  The place is free from fogs; the atmosphere is pure and invigorating, and the temperature is mild and pleasant.  The mountains are clothed with such trees as pine, oak, maple, laurel, madrone, while medicinal plants are found  in profusion in the vicinity.

The early traditions of the Madrone Springs state that they were known to the Indians, and there is little doubt that they were the "medicine waters' of one of their tribes, for many relics in the shape of mortars, hatchets, arrowheads and such like, have been and are still turned up in all directions.  Of their later history the following has been garnered:  In the year 1866 a native Californian named Juan Moreno, discovered the springs while on a hunting expedition, but took no heed, at any rate he did nothing; in 1866 he was joined by John Luce, an old mountaineer, when a log cabin was constructed, and a residence established, whence they could overlook the few cattle they had on the range.  C. S. Adams, of Gilroy, who had become an invalid, hearing of the place, visited it and derived much benefit therefrom.  In 1874 he purchased Moreno's interest, and erected four cottages, which still remain, though considerably altered, but he did not advertise the place as a resort.  In 1879 be bought the remaining claim on the property from Luce, and thus became the sole proprietor.  In that year, Dr. Clinton  Munson, of Oakland, finding his health failing, knowing of the existence of these springs, visited them, and derived much benefit.  In the month of June, 1879, in conjunction with Marshall E. Hunter, of Gilroy, he purchased the springs from Adams, the present proprietors being Munson & Hunter, the former of whom resided on the premises.

These springs are situated six miles north of the celebrated Gilroy Hot Springs, connecting with which there is a bridle path; there is a fine road to the Madrone station of the Southern Pacific Railroad, with which there is a direct state line to the springs, making four trips daily in the season, the ride being through some of the finest scenery in in the Coast Range; here the visitor will find accommodation for thirty guests, in eight detached, comfortable cottages.  The springs are chiefly one of natural soda water, the principal properties of which are soda, iron and magnesia.  This has proved of great medicinal virtue in dyspepsia, liver complaints, kidney diseases, and neuralgic affections.  Another is strongly impregnated with iron and arsenic, which, for debility, skin diseases, asthma, and other affections, has proved an excellent curative.  There is white sulphur spring, which is also utilized, while guests may be supplied with hot and cold baths of natural soft water.  Dr. Munson, who we have said resides at the Springs, giving his personal attention to invalids visiting the place, informs us that it is not the intention of the proprietors to make this a "fashionable" place, but a homelike resort, where guests can enjoy complete rest, and that it is their intention to erect a building to be used as a Sanitarium, where patients will be received at all seasons of the year, and obtain medical treatment in connection with the waters.

History of Santa Clara County, California, San Francisco: Alley, Bowen & Co., 1881- page 41
transcribed by Carolyn Feroben

- The Valley of Heart's Delight
July 19, 2005