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Providence Saint John’s Health Center Exhibit Focuses on 75 Years of Service

(Continued from Home Page)

In recognition of the 75th anniversary of Providence Saint John’s Health Center, the exhibit will display unique artifacts and photographs from the Center’s archive, which has been carefully tended by the Sisters of Charity since the 1940s. Highlights include the contents of time capsules, the first of which was interred behind the hospital’s first cornerstone in 1942, as well as original correspondence, photos and artifacts, such as a Bing Crosby recording dedicated to Saint John’s.

In 1938, medical professionals from Santa Monica partnered with the Sisters of Charity to build a new hospital. Opening its doors during World War II in October 1942, Saint John’s initially faced challenges due to wartime shortages. The postwar baby boom in the mid-1940s, however, was a blessing to the young facility, earning it the nickname, “Maternity home by the sea.”

As it expanded, the hospital consistently recruited leading doctors from a wide variety of specialties and backgrounds. Fundraising was, and continues to be, essential for sustaining the nonprofit Saint John’s. Hollywood stars Irene and John’s is. Hollywood stars Irene Dunne and Jimmy Stewart, in particular, were integral in sharing news about the wonderful community at Saint John’s and in recruiting additional supporters.

The museum, and this exhibit, are open to the public on Tuesdays and Thursdays, noon to 8 p.m.; and Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The museum is closed Sundays and Mondays. General admission for adults is $10.00 and $5.00 for seniors and students. Veterans, active-duty military, children 12 and under, and Santa Monica History Museum members receive free admission.

Please direct questions to John Klopping, Museum Manager, at 310-395-2290, or info@santamonicahistory.org.

Above, Saint John’s Hospital a few days before its opening on October 25, 1942. [Image date:10/22/1942] Credit: Santa Monica History Museum, Bill Beebe Collection

 

 
 

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