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Early Hospitals

This is Presbyterian Hospital, which was located at 311 West Trade Street. This postcard dates to 1909. Six years earlier on October 7, 1903, local physicians met at the courthouse in Charlotte and organized the Mecklenburg County Medical Society. Dr. H. Q. Alexander is the first president; Dr. Annie Alexander becomes the vice-president and Dr. Parks M. King is the first secretary-treasurer. Forty-one men and one woman are the charter members of this society.

By 1910, Charlotte has a number of hospitals and health clinics, including,

  • St. Peter’s Hospital (1876)
  • Good Samaritan Hospital (1891)
  • Presbyterian Hospital (1898)
  • Mercy Hospital (1906)
  • The Charlotte Sanatorium (1907)

Diseases such as cholera, typhoid fever, scarlet fever, mumps, tetanus, polio and tuberculosis were prevalent at the beginning of the twentieth century. There were few vaccines and no antibiotics like penicillin. Many children died from common illnesses, such as a cold, the measles, flu or chicken pox. If a broken bone was not set properly, the child could be  handicapped for life. Sometimes infection set in and the limb had to be amputated in order to save the patient's life. Doctors visited their patients at home when they were too sick to come to the office.


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