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German Hospital
German Hospital
TitleGerman Hospital
DescriptionPostcard of the German Hospital
Historical ArticleThe German Hospital association, organized in 1886, was composed of German-American citizens. Its first officers were C.E. Schoellkopf, A. Long, J.A. Bachman and C. Spengler.

A fund was created by subscription and a 3-story brick farmhouse was purchased for $10,000 from Mr. and Mrs. James Boyd Henri, on the west side of Holmes street near Twenty-third street. The site was considered far in the country.

Dr. Von Quast, a member of the original medical staff, told of lighting with coal oil lamps, water pumped from a well nearby and cows kept in the back yard to furnish milk for the patients.

In 1911 a new hospital was built, as shown, at the southwest corner of Twenty-third and Holmes. It contained 125 beds and was modern in every respect. The cost was $150,000.

The hospital was known as the German hospital until March 14,1918, when the name was changed to Research because of anti-German war sentiment.

Through the years there have been many additions and improvements, supplied by many donors. William Volker, a member of the board of directors, gave constantly of his time, energies and means.

Today the old hospital still serves Kansas City, but as part of the General hospital complex. The new Research hospital at Meyer boulevard and Prospect avenue opened August 18, 1963, and is considered one of the most modern medical centers in the Mid-West.

Kansas City Star
February 28, 1970

Speaking the Public Mind

I always enjoy the Post Cards from Old Kansas City. The one of the old German hospital brought to mind a story about my mother. She was born Elizabeth Rieke in February, 1879, on a farm a few miles southwest of Kansas City, Kansas, on the Wyandotte-Johnson County line, where her parents settled in the early 1860's.

They had a big pond, the gathering place for ice skaters in winter. When she was about 18 years old she developed something wrong with her ankle. (Doctors later decided it was bruised by ice skates.) She was in a hospital in Kansas City, but the doctors couldn't decide what the trouble was. One day when her father was visiting her, she told him they were going to take off her foot the next morning. He made her get up and dress and took her home.

He heard about the German-American doctors in Kansas City and took her to them. Relatives and friends tried to discourage him from taking her to them quacks. Every day for some time, he took her in the buggy for treatment. It was a bitter cold winter, and he wrapped her feet and legs in heavy blankets. They heated stove lids and bricks to put in the buggy to keep her warm.

She always said the doctors used some kind of light treatments to draw out the pimple formed on the bone. She walked on crutches for 18 months afterwards, but her food was saved. She married George Earnshaw in 1903, and they had four children. I was the eldest. I can remember that one or two of the doctors came out to Shawnee once in awhile to visit us and they always brought Mama a gift. I still have a gold-handled umbrella they gave her. She lived to age 76, passing away 15 years ago. She never ceased to praise the old German-American doctors.

Mrs. William L. Antoine
Independence, Mo.

Kansas City Star
AuthorRay, Mrs. Sam (Mildred)
Item TypePostcard
CollectionMrs. Sam Ray Postcard Collection (SC58)
See finding aid: http://localhistory.kclibrary.org/u?/Local,36981
Local SubjectHospitals
Research Hospital
German Hospital
Digital FormatJPEG
RepositoryMissouri Valley Special Collections, Kansas City Public Library, Kansas City, Missouri
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