Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- June 20, 1871No News of the Swim Bath
Again for some time we have heard nothing of the planned swimming establishment. The short-sightedness of the city authorities is truly lamentable. In St. Louis, too, there is much agitation in this cause, a proposition is in the City Council, and it is the German press, too, which agitates for the adoption of the proposal. There, the health council has given its support in wards similar to those of ours; bathing contributes more than anything else to conserve physical health in summer...... For a swimmer a tub bath is only a poor substitute for a swim in the open. But even a provision for tub baths is lacking in many houses, and the baths in barber shops and hotel bath rooms are in summer far from enticing.
A report of a police committee was presented to the City Council. It recommends that the creation of bathing houses be left to private enterprise, but with public subventions. Specifically it advises to vote $2000 to W. Gutschow for the construction of a bath house on 25th Street, Gutschow offers to build such a house and to keep half of it open for free public use.
Alderman Schaffner speaks warmly of the creation of public baths. He points to 2those poor families who live packed together in unhealthy living quarters and have no possibility to receive the benefit of a bath - a necessity both for reasons of health as well as of simple humanity. In New York and Boston these establishments had proven their worth.
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