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Banff Sanitarium Hotel: Mineral Springs, Monkeys, and Medicine

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Brett Sanitarium HotelMineral Springs, Monkeys, and Medicine

In 1851, a baby boy was born to James Brett and Catherine Mallon in Strathroy, Upper Canada. This boy would become known as Robert George Brett, or more commonly Dr. Brett. He would graduate from Victoria College Medical School, as a Medical Doctor in 1874. 

After further education, work, and travel, Dr. Brett joined the Canadian Pacific Railway on its endevour to build the transcontinental railway in 1881. During this time he concocted the vision to open a hotel and sanitarium based on the use of the mineral springs found in Banff. 



The site was selected and completed in 1886. At first it was called the Banff Hot Springs Sanitarium Hotel, but was shortened to Banff Sanitarium Hotel or Banff Sanitarium. 
When one hears the word, sanitarium, we picture an old, run-down building with unbearable conditions. Perhaps they picture a place where people who were mentally suffering were sent away by their families. However, the Banff San…