Pittsburg Scenes - Medical
Home | Pittsburg Scenes | Contact Me
Mt. Carmel Hospital
Opened 1903 - 3001 N. Michigan
Click on an image to see a larger version
Mt. Carmel Hospital
- postmarked 1908
Mt. Carmel Hospital
- postmarked 1914
Mt. Carmel Hospital
- no postmark (c1915-1930)
Mt. Carmel Hospital
- postmarked 1936
On April 14, 1903, a wet and rainy day, the Sisters of St. Joseph opened Mt. Carmel Hospital to the citizens of Pittsburg and the surrounding area. . The hospital was situated on 40 acres on the very northern boundary of Pittsburg, at what is 30th and Mt. Carmel Road today. The initial structure had cost $18,000 to build and was furnished by area organizations and individuals for another $12,000 and included 20 patient rooms. Since the Pittsburg Power Plant wasn’t able to supply enough power to the hospital to have electricity, oil lamps lighted it.
In the early 1900’s, people were afraid to go to the hospital for anything but life threatening or very serious illnesses. It was believed that hospitals should only be used the most dire in need. So for the first few years, the main patients that came through the doors were miners who had been injured on the job. Charges for services at the time were between $7.50 and $15.00 and were only billed to those who were able to pay. If a patient wasn’t able to pay, they were taken care of free of charge. It wasn’t a true hospital in the sense of what one is today, as the Sisters took care of everything, the cleaning, cooking, nursing and any other chores that needed to be done and doctors donated their services and time to help out.
In 1908, the first of several additions was added. It was dedicated on April 8, 1908 and included a new chapel and new dormitory space for the Sisters on the second floor. It also included an additional 15 rooms, bringing the total to 35 beds. In 1916, a new two-story building was built as an annex to the original. A new high-pressure boiler was added for steam to be pumped into the surgery room.
In 1918, a new four-story hospital was built next to the original. This addition increased the beds to eighty. It also included three operating rooms, a delivery room and permitted the hospital to separate the patients into to 3 wards; medical, surgical or obstetrical. The city of Pittsburg and its citizens helped the Sisters pay off their debt on the new building by donating $22,000. Not long after this, the hospital adopted the recording system of the American College of Surgeons and was accredited by that body in the early 1920’s.
In 1947 the final expansion of the facility was began with completion in 1951. By 1960, the hospital was showing signs of needing its own doctor and the hospital was being pressured by the every growing needs of the community. Not only was the building in need of major repairs, but also the patient count was well over 100% on any given day and patients were being held in the hallways waiting for rooms. After extensive ground tests and planning, it was decided against building a new facility next to the older one since the grounds weren’t very stable due undermining and lack of land.
It was decided to begin a search for a new location of 70 acres being found on the southeast corner of Rouse and Centennial. It was purchased from the Grotheer family and construction began in 1968. The building cost $6.5 million and was opened for business on March 21, 1971 with patients from the old facility being transferred in May. Today Mt. Carmel Medical Center has become a regional hospital with many additions and new programs added since 1971.

copyright 2008-2013