- Dunbar Hospital
Dunbar HospitalDunbar Hospital
Location: Detroit, Michigan
Coordinates: Coordinates: Built: 1892 Architect: Guy W. Vinton Architectural style: Romanesque Governing body: Private NRHP Reference#: 79001172 Added to NRHP: June 19, 1979
Dunbar Hospital was the first hospital in Detroit, Michigan for the black community. It is located at 580 Frederick Street, and is currently the administrative headquarters of the Detroit Medical Society. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979.
Building construction and description
The building housing Dunbar Hospital was built in 1892 by the Guy W. Vinton Company as a home for real estate developer Charles W. Warren. The home was constructed in a fashionable 19th century residential district.
Dunbar Hospital is a three-story home of mixed Romanesque Revival and Queen Anne style. It is built of red brick and rough-cut ashlar. The entrance is through a recessed, arched first-floor porch and the second story has a double-arch brick balcony. The roof is slate with a bay-windowed gabled dormer surmounting the front facade.
Founding of Dunbar Hospital
In 1894, Dr. James W. Ames, a graduate of both Straight University and Howard University, arrived in Detroit after a stint of teaching in New Orleans. He quickly became influential in both Detroit's white community and its then-small black community. Detroit's mayor at the time was Hazen Pingree. During his subsequent re-election campaign, Pingree actively courted the black vote, in part by supporting Ames's bid for election to the Michigan state legislature.
The nationally famous black poet Paul Laurence Dunbar, popular in both the black and white community, visited Detroit and lent his voice to those supporting Pingree, penning the poem, "Vote for Pingree and Vote for Bread." Both Ames and Pingree won their respective elections, and Ames spent the next two years in the legislature. He was the last black elected until the 1920s.
Two decades later, in the years following World War I, the black population of Detroit soared. In 1910, fewer than 6000 blacks called the city home; in 1917 more than 30,000 blacks lived in Detroit. The increase in black residents led to a crisis in health care. Hospitals were still segregated, and physicians like Ames were required to ask permission to admit black patients. Often black patients were simply denied care. The increase in the black population threatened to overwhelm the city's 30 black doctors.
In 1918, Ames led the group of 30 black physicians too form the Allied Medical Society. The area around Frederick street was at the cusp of becoming the center of social and cultural life for Detroit's black community, and the AMS purchased the Warren home on Frederick They opened their own non-profit hospital in the building, the first in the city to serve the black community, as well as an associated nursing school. The hospital was named for the poet Dunbar, who had died in 1906. The hospital had 27 beds and an operating room.
In 1928, demand led Dunbar Hospital to move from its first home to a larger facility several blocks to the east. The facility was renamed Parkside Hospital, and continued in operation until 1962. Soon after Dunbar moved from its home on Frederick, Charles C. Diggs, who was later the first African-American Democratic state senator, purchased the home. Diggs's son, Charles C. Diggs Jr., served in the Michigan State Senate from 1951 to 1954 and the U.S. House of Representatives from 1954 to 1980. In 1978, the Detroit Medical Society (the successor to the Allied Medical Society) purchased and restored the building. It now serves as their administrative headquarters and a museum.
- ^ a b "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2008-04-15. http://nrhp.focus.nps.gov/natreg/docs/All_Data.html.
- ^ a b c d e f g h i Dunbar Hospital from the National Park Service
- ^ a b c d e f g h Dunbar Hospital from the state of Michigan
- ^ [Eric J. Hill, John Gallagher, and the American Institute of Architects Detroit Chapter,] AIA Detroit: The American Institute of Architects Guide to Detroit Architecture, Wayne State University Press, 2002, ISBN:0814331203, p. 182
- ^ a b c d e f g h Vivian M. Baulch, "How Detroit got its first black hospital," The Detroit News, November 28, 1995.
- ^ "Black-Owned and Operated Hospitals in the Detroit Metropolitan Area during the 20th Century," University of Michigan Medical School, Winter Newsletter 1998
City of Detroit Metro Detroit · Michigan · United States Historic homes in metropolitan Detroit CityJohn N. Bagley House • Beaubien House • George L. Beecher House • James Burgess Book Jr. House • William C. Boydell House • Joseph Campau House • Alexander Chapoton House • Alexander Chene House • Croul-Palms House • Charles Lang Freer House • Charles T. Fisher House • Bishop Gallagher House • Bernard Ginsburg House • Berry Gordy House • John Harvey House • Col. Frank J. Hecker House • Hudson-Evans House • Northwood-Hunter House • Mulford T. Hunter House • Albert Kahn House • S.S. Kresge House • George W. Loomer House • David Mackenzie House • Manoogian Mansion • Perry McAdow House • Moross House • Philetus W. Norris House • Arthur M. Parker House • Thomas A. Parker House • Sibley House • Samuel L. Smith House • Marvin M. Stanton House • Frederick K. Stearns House • Herman Strasburg House • Elisha Taylor House • Thompson Home • Charles Trowbridge House • Franklin H. Walker House • Warren Home (Dunbar Hospital) • William H. Wells House • David Whitney House SuburbanHenry W. Baker House • Cranbrook House and Gardens • Edsel and Eleanor Ford House • Edward Loranger House • Governor Robert McClelland House • Henry Ford's Fair Lane Estate • Greenfield Village • Greenmead Farms • Grosse Pointe landmarks • Koebel House • John and Rosetta Lee House • Meadow Brook Hall (Dodge-Wilson estate) • Orson Everitt House • Rudolph Nims House • Russell A. Alger Jr., House • Sawyer House • Carl E. and Alice Candler Schmidt House • William B. and Mary Chase Stratton House • John T. Woodhouse House Canton Township MPSThomas and Maria Blackman Bartlett House • David and Elizabeth Bell Boldman House • Benjamin and Mary Ann Bradford House • Thomas and Isabella Moore Clyde House • Phillip and Maria Hasselbach Dingledey House • John and Edna Truesdell Fischer Farmstead • Orrin and Roxanne Fairman Kinyon House • John and Eliza Barr Patterson House • Sheldon Inn • George and Mary Pine Smith House • Ephraim and Emma Woodworth Truesdell House Neighborhood
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