Cora, Thomas, and Ada Rosser
had malaria, which was endemic in the area. Every year he would come down with fevers from malaria, and every year Uncle Tom would go to Hot Springs, Arkansas to sit in the baths to boil the fever out.
Spring water, especially water rich in minerals was thought to be curative, and people came from as far away as Europe to visit natural springs. Places like Hot Springs, and Eureka Springs, Arkansas, and Sulfur, Oklahoma, were popular health resorts around the turn of the 19th century because of the springs there.
My mother had a cousin who had tuberculosis. At that time people with TB were sent to sanitoriums to keep them from spreading their infections, and many went to live in the mountains, believing that the mountain air was curative. Denver, Colorado, is still home to one of the most renowned centers for the treatment of lung disease.