University Hospital (Old Main)
For many years before World War I plans for increasing the hospital facilities of the University had been discussed. In 1917 the legislature made the first appropriation for a new hospital of $350,000. In 1919 an additional $700,000 brought the total to $1,050,000 ($35,000 was set aside for an addition to the Homeopathic Hospital). At first it was planned to construct the new hospital in units or sections, costing about $350,000 each, as the money was appropriated. This did not prove feasible, and the entrance of the United States into World War I further delayed the progress of the building. The construction proceeded slowly as funds were made available. New patients were moved into the new hospital in August of 1925.
The hospital was built on the system of regularly spaced piers, fireproof construction throughout, and contained two miles of corridors and ten acres of floor space. The final cost of the building was $3,395,961, with more than $400,000 spent for equipment.
The hospital was constructed of light sand-colored brick with stone trimmings, and was built in the shape of a double Y, with the lower ends forming the main corridors and the upper angles of the Y forming the wards at either end. At the ends of the two Y’s were attractively furnished sun rooms. This unusual design provided maximum light and air for all the rooms and wards on the nine stories, all of which were completely or in part available for patients.
- The first floor was occupied by the X-ray department with complete facilities for diagnosis. Treatment facilities were housed in the Alice Crocker Lloyd Radiation Therapy Center Unit. One of the large amphitheaters was equipped with a special device by means of which 200 students could hear a patient’s heart sounds at the same time.
- The second floor was devoted to internal medicine and metabolic diseases.
- The third floor was occupied mostly by men’s and women’s surgery.
- The fourth floor was devoted to treatment of orthopedic, urologic, and ear afflictions.
- The fifth floor was reserved for treatment of neurological, neurosurgical, medical, and eye diseases.
- The sixth floor provided facilities for treating 95 children.
- Floors below the first level were used for services such as kitchens, stores, dining rooms, cafeterias, and clothes storage.
- On the roof there was a recreation center and school department for crippled children, and a poliomyelitis respirator center.
There were eleven operating rooms with student seating behind the railing
One of the children's outings took them to the Zoo besides the Museum to see the animals.
In 1931 two additional stories were added to the Hospital allowing the addition of 98 beds devoted to the care and treatment of tuberculosis. Incorporated in the addition were a light therapy room and a number of laboratories.