In the stagecoach days, travelers came to Harlem Springs for the “healing” waters that bubbled from the ground. Robert E. Lee and William Henry Harrison paid visits to the resort. The hamlet even had a college.
None of it lasted. The namesake springs lost their mineral potency by the Civil War, then ran dry, explained local historian Janice Lane. The college moved to another town.
Harlem Springs today is a cluster of houses along a wide curve on state Route 43, seemingly passed by traffic and time.
But a couple of miles away, at the end of a winding country road, a humming sprawl of white tanks and pipes is harnessing a new underground resource in this southeastern corner of Carroll County.