Monday, February 11, 2013
Old St. Luke's Hospital, Jacksonville, Florida
View from the front
I volunteered for the Arthritis
Foundation back in 2007-2008. Lucky for me, at that time, their offices were
based in the historic Old St. Luke’s Hospital on Palmetto Street in Jacksonville,
Florida. The Old St. Luke’s Hospital was completed in 1878. The large brick building housing the Florida
Casket Company was added adjacently to the hospital in 1882.
One afternoon, I was allowed to
roam freely throughout the hospital and photograph it. Even the attic! The Old St. Luke’s Hospital served during
many people during yellow fever outbreaks in its’ early days as well as a refuge for sick
travelers and the poor.
The Florida Casket Company was built in 1882
A supply cart of some sort, I offer the conjecture that it was made to carry a particular machine.
The hospital is truly a historic treasure containing many medical artifacts from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. I am not sure of the exact use for many of these pictured. The antique equipment is in more knowledgeable care regarding their conservation than when these pictures were taken five years ago. If you know more about them, including their uses, please comment in the section below.
The box in the center contained unused medicine still intact in their original glass vials.
Supply Cabinets. On the right are smaller medical tools on display.
Unfortunately, I cannot tell you the exact use of many of these medical devices. We are just going to have to wait until the museum opens!
One of the few ornate and beautiful fire places.
The left picture is the view from the 1st floor and the right picture is the view from the 2nd floor.
All of the porches are inviting with cool breezes from the St. John's River.
The Great Fire of 1901 burned most
of Jacksonville’s downtown, and the hospital is one of the few surviving
buildings from that era. Old St. Luke's Hospital needed
some expensive restoration and it had been listed for sale back in 2008. Delightedly,
I discovered that it was purchased by the Jacksonville Historical Society. They
are in the process of setting up a Jacksonville History Museum in the future, although it won't be ready for some time. However, an archive housing Jacksonville's history in documents is currently available at the hospital. It is open Monday-Thursday from 9:30 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. It is recommended to call ahead and let the archivist know you are coming in order to have your documents ready.
Here is the contact information:
Jacksonville Historical Society Archives at Old St. Luke’s
314 Palmetto Street