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In Their Own Words

May 08, 1734

Salzburgers Found Clear Water

Johann Martin Boltzius was the religious leader of the Salzburgers who emigrated to Georgia in 1734; he kept a journal of their settlement. On this day he recorded the problem that could be caused by drinking tainted water, but fortunately they soon found an alternative:

“…The People in Abercorn, as well as in Ebenezer, are troubled with Loosnesses. It is thought, that drinking too much in hot Weather, is the Reason of it. They are too bashful to tell it in the Beginning, when the Evil might be prevented. Some have had great Benefit by our Physick. We assist them in their Sickness: we wish we were able to serve them more. The River-Water will not agree with us nor the Saltzburgers; it being full of Trees and Leaves: wherefore we intended to dig a Well; but Providence ordered it so, that we found a Brook, which rises out of a little Hill, and hath good and wholesome Water, and saves us that trouble. …”

Source: Our First Visit in America: Early Reports from the Colony of Georgia, 1732-1740 (Savannah: Beehive Press, 1974), p. 77.