history of soap lake, washington
The first of several recorded incidents that demonstrated the healing effects of the waters of Soap Lake occurred in the 1920’s after the First World War. Upon returning from Europe from the War, thousands of soldiers found themselves suffering from Buerger's Disease, a circulatory and flesh eating skin disease. The affected soldiers would drank the water and swim in the lake and subsequently see their symptoms vanish; the minerals in the water completely rejuvenated their skin. In fact, to confirm the healing properties of the lake, the Federal Government even built a lab at Soap Lake (which still exists today) devoted to the study of the water’s unique healing powers.
The discovery of a large number of Native American artifacts in the regions surrounding the Lake suggest that the local tribes were acutely aware of Soap Lake’s healing powers long before the arrival of the WWI veterans. Oral histories from the descendants of these people tell that, even in times of war, rival tribes would agree to a truce at Soap Lake so that warriors could use the lake’s water to heal themselves and their animals.
Today, Soap Lake continues to serve as a popular healing destination for people with a wide array of health and skin afflictions.