From a Fan: Rare Photos of Babe Ruth in Hot Springs

Recently, a BabeRuthCentral fan reached out to us with some great pictures and a new Babe Ruth story we weren’t aware of.

Hot Springs, Arkansas has been well known as a health and recreation resort. From the late 1800s to early 1900s, Hot Springs was one of the hottest destinations in the US for celebrities, athletes and even mobsters.

Per the website, “In 1886, Cap Anson brought his Chicago White Stockings (now the Cubs) to Hot Springs. The health spa with its famous hot mineral baths, the mountains, trails, hotels and activities in this bustling turn-of-the-century resort was the perfect place for something no one had ever heard of: annual spring training for professional baseball.  In time, five fields were built. Each spring as many as 250 players came here to train, including some the legends of the game.”  Some of those legends over the years included Honus Wagner, Cy Young, Mel Ott, Jackie Robinson and Babe Ruth.

Ruth trained here nine times over the course of his career. He enjoyed the mountains, playing golf and visiting the racetrack. BRC fan, Patty Stariha, reached out to us to share some information, as well as copies of some rare Babe Ruth-related photos.  Her great uncle was Dave Bancroft, Hall of Fame shortstop for the NY Giants.   Ruth and Bancroft were friends and apparently hung out a few times together in Hot Springs while their respective teams conducted some spring training there.  She shared some “gag photos” of her aunt, Edna (Bancroft’s wife) with Babe Ruth and his first wife, Helen. They were taken at an amusement park/photography studio there called Happy Hollow which located along Fountain Street at the base of Hot Springs Mountain.  Have a look below:

Babe Ruth Ladies

Babe Ruth, wife Helen and friend Edna Bancroft (HOFer Dave Bancroft’s wife) posing for a photo


Babe Ruth Donkey

Babe Ruth, wife Helen and Edna Bancroft, “riding a mule”












Babe Doll Bear

Babe Ruth, wife Helen and friend Edna Bancroft having fun taking photos

Babe Ruth posing, while first wife Helen and Edna Bancroft on Carousel Horse

Babe Ruth posing, while first wife Helen and Edna Bancroft on Carousel Horse







Babe Ruth “Did you Know?” – On March 17, 1918 (St. Patrick’s Day), he launched a mammoth home run from Whittington Park (Hot Springs, AR) that landed on the fly, inside the Arkansas Alligator Farm. It has been measured at 573 feet, — baseball’s first 500-foot-plus drive.

Feel Free to Contact Us

We welcome questions, comments and stories about Babe and related topics. We also are happy to help with memorabilia and historical information. Contact Us