Friday, July 23, 2010

Grace Hospital, ca. 1920


Postcard image of Grace Hospital, ca. 1920.

The reverse of the postcard reads: "This beautiful building is
thoroughly equipped with all the latest appliances for the alleviation of the sick."

Located at 401 W. Grace Street, Grace Hospital, built 1911-1912, was one of ten new hospitals built in Richmond between 1900 and 1920, an example of the city’s growth during that time period.

Grace Hospital was built as a three-story modern hospital designed by Charles M. Robinson (1867-1932). It opened in May of 1912 with 47 patient beds and had the distinction of being the first fire-proof hospital building in the city. Its Colonial Revival design included a large portico with paired Ionic columns. In this postcard view the classical balustrade, long since removed, can be seen.

The building tripled in size with additions in 1930 and in 1964. It had a nursing program that operated from 1912 to 1932 and 1942 to 1975. Grace Hospital merged with St. Elizabeth’s Hospital, 617 W. Grace Street, in 1979 to become Richmond Metropolitan Hospital, 701 W. Grace Street, now a VCU dormitory.


Throughout the 1980s and 1990s Grace Hospital served as an adult retirement home. Most of its residents were indigent patients, many with mental health issues.They were often characterized as being among Richmond's "homeless." The facility closed in the late 1990s. In 2004 the building was remodeled into an apartment building.


Two notable Richmonders from different social ranks died at Grace Hospital. Major James H. Dooley (1841-1922), whose large estate, Maymont, was later given to the City of Richmond, died here on November 16, 1922. Benjamin F. Mosby, a C&O Railway employee, died here after injuries he sustained from the famous Church Hill Tunnel collapse in 1925. 

For more on Grace Hospital, check out this wonderfully
researched Registration Form for the National Register of Historic Places

Research more Richmond postcards HERE.

- Ray B.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I was born in Grace Hospital in 1945. I will soon make a visit back to see it.
- Bill King