Anchorage Hospital Memories
Do you know who started Providence Hospital in Anchorage? Did you know that the first hospital in Anchorage was for Railroad employees?
Photo above is Providence Hospital in 1955, taken by Ward Wells
The story of Providence Hospital in Anchorage began when the Sisters of Providence were founded in Montreal, Canada in 1843.
Their mission was a simple one. To minister to the needs of the poor, sick and unfortunate. But their mission soon grew to much more.
By 1900 the Sisters had established 29 hospitals, schools, orphanages, housing for the elderly and facilities for mentally ill patients.
The Nome Gold Rush
During the gold rush in the small town of Nome, there were anywhere from 10,000 to 20,000 people.
In 1902, Sister Mary Conrad, Sister Rodrique, Sister Lambert and Sister Mary Napoleon were among the Sisters of Providence who traveled to Nome. In a short time, they established Holy Cross Hospital in a building that was already available.
First Hospital in Anchorage
Photo above is tent city May 1915 that would become Anchorage, Alaska
Anchorage was a company town back in 1915. The two log buildings under construction in the picture above, would be the Alaska Railroad Hospital, the first hospital in Anchorage.
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Mary of Anchorage Memories was born there. And for Mike of Anchorage Memories, his brother Tom and sister Sybil were both born there.
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Providence Hospital in Anchorage
Photo above was taken circa 1945–1949
The grand opening of Providence Hospital in Anchorage was June 29, 1939.
The total cost was half a million dollars. It was the finest hospital in Alaska.
Anchorage Citizens Helped
Many folks in Anchorage helped with contributions, furniture and other items.
Cap Lathrop, who owned the Empress, Denali and 4th Avenue movie theatres, gave money for equipment and a surgical room. Doctor Romig completely equipped the Laboratory and Sidney Laurence donated a painting of Mount McKinley. There were many more who contributed in one way or another.
Anchorage Presbyterian Hospital
Photo above is Anchorage Community Hospital 1972
Located at 8th and I Street, across from Providence Hospital.
Originally opened as Anchorage Presbyterian Hospital in 1963, it later became Alaska Regional Hospital.
Nikki, the daughter of Mike and Mary of Anchorage Memories was born in this hospital.
In 1976, the hospital was moved to DeBarr Road.
**The story of this hospital is a little fuzzy, so if you have more details, please let us know.
1964 Good Friday Earthquake
As with many buildings in Anchorage, the Providence hospital building was badly damage during the 1964 earthquake. It was left as an abandoned building for some time.
Take a look at the History of the Sisters of Providence and enjoy
Did You Hear About This?
Do you enjoy discovering fun, interesting facts?
You’ll love Mike’s new once a month publication, “Really?”
In each edition, you’ll enjoy finding out about all kinds of things from all over the world and even the universe. And it’s FREE.
Take a look at Really? and discover.
What Do You Have to Say?
“A new bakery opened in Port Townsend, a 15-minute drive away, that uses sourdough in everything they offer. It is the best sourdough bread I've had since leaving Alaska. Really! I told that to the owner, Tom, and he asked me what part of Alaska because he was from Alaska too. “Anchorage,” I said and asked where he was from. Tom gave me a look as if to say I wouldn't know the place. “Girdwood”, he said. When I replied, “The Birdhouse” he beamed and said, “You've been to the Birdhouse!?!?” We had fun reminiscing. Oh, how I miss Alaska and the people.”
Your Next Edition of
Alaska Facts and History
Photo by Quintin Soloviev
Do you know that Fairbanks was established as a result of a series of mishaps?
And did you know that Fairbanks got its name during a conversation with a Judge?
You’ll enjoy this edition of Alaska Facts and History, coming Sunday, January 8th.
Mike and Mary
That’s us between the two Marines.
We were in Griffith Park in Los Angeles and Mary’s father, Simon “Big Sammy” and Mike’s father, Ray were honored for their service at a flag lowering ceremony. A special moment.
Did you enjoy this edition of your Anchorage Memories VIP Club? Were you born in, or did you ever visit the old Providence Hospital in Anchorage?
You can let us know by replying to this email or Contacting Us to say “hey, I was born there.”
And be sure to check out Mike’s new free monthly publication called “Really?” It’s a lot of fun.
Until Next Time
Mike and Mary
Mark – Mary and I appreciate your comment and your reference to Anchorage Memories. We are happy that you are enjoying the Anchorage Memories VIP Club.
Elizabeth - Great story - thank you for sharing -