Saratoga: The wickedest city in America

Saratoga Springs around 1900 (© Flickr/wutz2000)

During the 19th century, a small town in upstate New York quickly grew into America’s most popular resort. With its natural mineral water spas, luxury hotels, horse racing and gambling casinos, Saratoga Springs attracted thousands of tourists every summer, including wealthy socialites, writers and actors, politicians and con men. By the turn of the 20th century, famous journalist Nellie Bly dubbed it “the wickedest city in America”, and it has captured the imagination of writers and filmmakers ever since.

Producer: David Swatling

Broadcast: September 17, 1999