In 1822 doctor Ignaz Werle, brother-in-law of Archduke Johann, wrote a treatise on the special curative power of the springs in the valley of Gleichenberg. He motivated the Styrian governor of the time, imperial count Constantin von Wickenburg to undertake a trip to South-Eastern Styria. The open-minded count, thinking in economic and modern terms, went to see the place for himself and was taken not only by the effervescent springs but also by the charms of the delightful landscape.
The commercial use of the Gleichenberg curative water was promptly implemented. The “Gleichenberger und Johannis-Brunnen Actien Verein” was founded as early as 1834.
The cooperation stated in the protocol of the constituent meeting their purpose as follows: “To buy the mineral springs of the Johannis well; to publish the knowledge gained on their curative power, thereby promoting the sales of these mineral waters and to build in the area the necessary realities in order to render possible the treatment and stay for spa guests.”
Drinking the waters early in the morning was a social event. The exclusive society would meet to drink a glass of “Gleichenberger Wasser”, accompanied by relaxing music.
The church and clubhouse formed the economic centre of the up-and-coming spa town. Medical care in Bad Gleichenberg was always state-of-the-art. The pneumatic chamber enjoyed a worldwide reputation. Even brine inhalation cabins were part of the repertoire. The curative water was initially transported in stoneware jugs. Soon they would be substituted by the handier glass bottles.