5928 Germantown Avenue
Cuyler Hospital at Town Hall
Thomas H. Shoemaker Collection, folio 9
Historical Society of Pennsylvania

Included with the following handwritten text (dated 1889) is an oval-shaped photo taken from a roof top to the east of Town Hall showing "The Cuyler Hospital at Town Hall Built During the Rebellion" (see description in text below).

"Cuyler Hospital"

"As soon as the need of hospitals was felt around Phila. during the Rebellion, the Town Hall was selected as a suitable site. This of course was prior to the opening of Lafayette or Adams Sts. and the ground around the Hall covered all the space now occupied by those streets and their houses. The Hall was used first and then the frame wards built as we see them. No. I, running at right angles to the Hall in front, was the officers quarters; no. II ran from the rear of the Hall toward Green St. and was the dining room; and at right angles to it and opening in it were the wards for the sick. The whole was frame, one story high.

"This picture was made by Wendroth & Taylor from the top of Harkinson's ice cream store, now Engards. It shows the old steeple on Town Hall, the Stand-pipe on Tulpehocken St. and the steeple on the second Presbyterian Church, now all things of the past.

"The following data concerning this hospital was furnished by Dr. James Darrach of Germantown: In the year 1862 the city of Philadelphia offered the Town Hall, of Germantown, to the U.S. Government for hospital purposes. Under the influence of a number of patriotic ladies Dr. Darrach went to Washington and obtained from the Surgeon General an order to the Medical Director of this district, and in July of the year the hospital was organized, with Dr. James Darrach as surgeon in charge, and Drs. J. M. Leedom, W.R. Dunton, T.F. Betton, R.N. Downs, C.R. Prall(?), W. Darrach Jr., Horace Y. Evans, John Ashhurst Jr. and P.D. Keyser as assistant surgeons. The capacity of the original building being too limited, additions were made which enabled the hospital to accommodate 630 beds...(details about naming the hospital, subsequent directors and women's volunteer work)

"The hospital continued to receive patients until the end of the war, and served a good purpose in receiving convalescent patients from the field hospitals, thus making room for those who needed prompt attention near the battlefield. The hospital was closed at the end of the war, and the remaining patients were transferred to the Mower Hospital, Chestnut Hill."

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