A HISTORICAL CHRONOLOGY OF CARBON COUNTY HOSPITALS
“Understanding our Heritage”
1898 – The first mention made of hospital facilities in Rawlins was in 1898 when a Dr. Jolly took care of patients on the second floor of one of the downtown business, the Murchison Jewelry store. Two years later Dr. Jolly built a two-story building behind the Elks Lodge as a combination home and hospital with the living quarters and office on the first floor and 4-6 rooms upstairs for patients. For reasons unknown, Dr. Jolly sold his home/hospital barely one year later to a Mr. Dennis O’Melia, who occupied it as his personal residence for many years.
Also between 1893 and 1900, Mill Lillian Heath, the first woman doctor in Wyoming, used her parents’ home on Cedar Street as a hospital for the care of her more seriously ill patients.
1911 – The next known hospital was housed in a former Catholic school, and it was called The Rawlins Hospital and was located on the corner of 3rd Street and Cedar. The hospital was a three-story building administered by a Dr. Nichols, who reportedly had a forged license. It was closed by a fire in December of 1917.
1917 – After the fire, the patients were transferred to the Frank Hadsell home on 4th Street and Maple. Mrs. Hadsell, a registered nurse, was assisted in the care of the patients by Mrs. Homer France. The patients were later transferred to the Masonic Hall where they remained until March of 1918.
1919 – At the urging of the Rawlins Board of Trade (now called Chamber of Commerce) the city purchased the Mayor’s home as a hospital from 1919 to 1921 when the Carbon County Memorial Hospital was built through the untiring efforts of a local attorney, L.E. Armstrong.
1921 – In December of 1921 the newly constructed Carbon County Memorial Hospital opened at the present site of Cathy Gardens.
1935 – A nurse’s quarters was built just north of the hospital. It is presently known as the “Dormitory”.
1950 – A new wing was added on to the hospital.
1967 – The hospital Board realized that the outdated facility would probably not meet new Medicare regulations and could jeopardize Medicare reimbursement and the financial stability of the hospital.
1972 – Planning for the construction of a new hospital in Carbon County began in early 1967 and two bond referendums and substantial private donations were needed to finish the project. Since its opening in 1972, several additions and renovations have taken place including the construction of a west wing in 1984 used for general administrative and educational purposes.
1997 – The Obstetrics Department was added.
2012 – Surgery and ICU renovations took place.
2013 – A Family Practice Clinic was established known as Spruce Medical Clinic. Wagon Circle Surgical Clinic was also remodeled.
2014 – An expanded Emergency Department on the east end of the main hospital building was completed, and the Obstetrics Department was remodeled.
2019 – The new MHCC Family Practice Clinic opened.