Monday, November 17, 2014

Birmingham Photo of the Day (22): The Hillman Hospital Annex Cornerstone

Often we walk by history every day and never notice. Recently I was waiting on the bus to take me to my car in the UAB remote parking lot and sat down on a bench. I was facing what is now called the New Hillman Building on 20th Street South. The Annex, actually between Old [1902] and New [1928] Hillmans, was opened in 1913. Here's what I saw on the corner of that building near its entrance:

This plaque for the Hillman Hospital Annex lists the agencies and men prominently involved in the structure. By 1907 the charitable founders & owners of Hillman Hospital, the Board of Lady Managers, transfered it to the Jefferson County Board of Revenue. The individuals were prominent in their day. Dr. Charles Whelan had been elected physician for the city of Birmingham in 1899. Dr. Edgar Poe Hogan published medical articles and served as part-time Superintendent of the hospital from 1910 until 1930. He also participated in the Spanish-American War and served in the Alabama legislature. He died in 1965. H.B. Wheelock had worked as architect on the original Hillman building.

The cornerstone plaque for the original Hillman Hospital building is below, taken from the BhamWiki site. As that article notes, Hillman Hospital originally opened on the city's Southside in 1888 as the Hospital of United Charity. Local businessman Thomas Hillman made a donation to rebuild the hospital after a fire and it was named for him when they new structure opened at its current location. All the names listed on this plaque except for the architect and contractor are women, the wives of local businessmen. That group had begun organizing for a charity hospital as the Daughters of United Charity in 1886.

A photo of the two Hillman buildings in 1929 and some history of the hospital and how it became a part of UAB can be found in one of my earlier blog posts. More about Hillman Hospital can be found on the BhamWiki site.

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