A.B. Rogers first encountered glass-bottom boats in California. His son, Paul, became interested in the idea because he wanted his family and friends to see the beauty beneath Spring Lake.
Launched in 1946, the first glass-bottom boat was a small prototype that held only a few people. A year later, Paul added a second, larger boat. The first official glass-bottom boat tour of Spring Lake was held on August 10, 1947. Guests on the first tours signed a register; in addition to San Marcos residents, the list includes visitors from Austin, New Braunfels, San Antonio, Houston, and Harlingen, as well as from Louisiana, Oklahoma, Kansas, Illinois, North Carolina, and South Carolina.
Word quickly spread about the glass-bottom boat tours, where Spring Lake's clear water allowed for fantastic views of wildlife, vegetation, and bubbling underwater springs. Between 1945 and 1994, a total of eight hand-crafted glass-bottom boats were added to the fleet to keep up with the demand for tours.
Glass-bottom boat tours became so popular that Paul Rogers started planning additional attractions to entertain guests.