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"History of Eau Claire County Wisconsin, 1914, Past and Present"


Chapter  17 - The Medical Fraternity 

Tuberculosis Sanatorium

(-as transcribed from pages 313 - 317)

The Eau Claire County Tuberculosis Sanatorium was officially opened on Monday, December 15, 1913, when the twenty patients who had made application were admitted for treatment.  Following is what the county has done for the tuberculosis sanatorium:  April, 1912, $4,000 appropriated; November, 1912, $12,000 tax levy made; April, 1913, %400 appropriated; November, 1913, $8,266.35 appropriated and $12,000 tax levy made; $20,000 of this remains.

The two wings of the building are occupied by twenty-four patients' single rooms and four large porches at the ends of the wings.  These porches are open and have only heavy canvas curtains, which were put in place by William Schroeder.

The four patients' single rooms were furnished at an estimated cost of $33 each, but in reality cost a little more.  They have their windows int he front of the building with the hall in the rear.  The large part to the rear is occupied  by the kitchen, serving rooms, office and cook's and maid's apartments.  It may be interesting to know that the large living room and dining-room was furnished by a donation from the Elks and Knights of Columbus, and that much of the mission furniture was manufactured at our own Phoenix Furniture Company.  The lodges furnished the electric fixtures also.  These were furnished by the county in the other rooms.

The floors throughout the building are of hardwood and all the walls are of the same spotless white.  There are magazines and books on the rack beside the large cheerful fireplace.  The woodwork is selected Georgia pine with two panel doors.   The mantelpiece is a solid three-inch piece of the same wood.  The next place to be inspected was the kitchen, where Mrs. Julia A. Brown holds full sway.  It is here that all the food will be cooked.  The cupboard is used for the dishes of the nurses and the help and such supplies as are needed for the day.  A splendid Majestic range is to be seen here, which was purchased from the Foss-Armstrong Company.  The Norden Lodge donated the money for this and also for the fine kitchen utensils, which were purchased from Schlieve Bros.  The fine cooling room was built by the Wisconsin Refrigerator Company, and paid for by a donation from the Masonic Lodge.  The dishes used in the institution are the unbreakable rolled edge Syracuse china purchased through Mr. Richard Kaiser, the money being given by the Norwegian Lutheran church and a $50 check from an "Unknown Friend."

Nothing that leaves the kitchen going to the patients will return.  The food is taken to the serving room, where it is dished up by the maid.  When the dishes are returned they are washed and sterilized.  The same care that is used here is in force all over the building, so there is no danger of infection.  A dumb waiter is used for sending the food to patients on the upper floor and bringing supplies up from the basement.  The office of the superintendent, Miss Ramstead, is simply furnished, as she will spend much of her time looking after the patients.  There will be two other day nurses and one night nurse on the staff.  Dr. R. E. Mitchell will serve in the capacity of visiting physician.  Miss Ramstead's parents live in this city, but she has for several years been connected with the city hospital at Minneapolis.

The entrance will be in the angle of the building on the east side.  This opens into the reception room, adjoining the superintendent's office. The drive leads around the building.

The single rooms on the first floor are very cheerfully furnished, with the regulation hospital beds and a solid maple chair.  A flue for ventilation opens into each room.  It was planned to have a locker for the patients' clothes under these flues, but it was found to be too great an expense, so closets have been provided.  There are drinking fountains in the halls and bath rooms within easy reach.

The halls open onto the porches at either end and the beds will pass through the doors easily, so when the patients cannot be moved their beds can be rolled out.  There are two windows in each room, so there will not be a lack of light.  There are two wheel chairs for those who are able to sit up, and more will be provided later if it is seen that they are necessary.

Two double nurses' rooms occupy the front of the second floor.  They are furnished with a fumed oak dresser and chairs.  Across the hall is the room that will be occupied by the night nurse.  The patients' rooms are the same as those on the first floor and there is a ward containing four beds.  The sanitary rugs which were given by the Woman's Club deserve particular mention, as they were seen in every patient's room and in the living room.  The women of the club sewed the rags for them during the last summer and had them woven by Mr. and Mrs. Richard Koshoshek, McDonough street.  C. H. Metcalf will have charge of the basement.  There is a grocery room, a vegetable room, the janitor's room, rooms for coal and wood, a laundry and a trunk room.

The object of the sanatorium is to provide treatment for the more advanced cases of pulmonary tuberculosis from Eau Claire county. Should there at any time be vacancies, suitable patients from other counties may be admitted.  In every instance the patient must make an application for admittance, and no one will be received without receiving a previous notice from the superintendent.  So far as is practical, the treatment will consist essentially of out of door living, an abundance of wholesome, nutritious food together with supervision of exercise and rest.  Such medical treatment as seems best indicated will be prescribed for the individual case.  As a part of their prescribed exercise patients may be required, as their condition permits, to do a certain amount of useful labor.  This applies equally to those paying for their maintenance, as well as to those who do not pay.

Application for admission to the sanatorium must be made in writing upon blanks provided for that purpose, which will be furnished by the superintendent upon request.  As soon as this formal routine is completed in a satisfactory way the applicant may be admitted.

It is expected that every patient will pay the cost of his or her maintenance, if able to do so.  This amount, at present, is $10.00 per week but may be raised or lowered at any time if found necessary or advisable.

For those unable to pay any part of their maintenance, provision is made whereby they may be admitted at the expense of the county in which they reside upon recommendation of the judge of the probate court.  For those desiring to take advantage of this provision of the law, necessary blanks will be furnished upon request.  To meet the requirements of those who are unable to pay the full cost of their maintenance, but who are able or desirous of paying a portion of the amount, provision is made for a rate of $5.00 per week, if the probate judge, after investigation, shall have found that the patient is really unable to pay more than that amount.

Clarence Sprague, Charles A. Cox and W. K. Coffin are the trustees of the institution.

The following is a list of those who furnished the rooms - and they are given in the order in which they were received.  Later the rooms will be numbered to correspond with this list.
  1. The Rev. A. B. C. Dunne
  2. Tom Fleming
  3. Mrs. Kate Porter
  4. Alex Dean
  5. O. H. Ingram
  6. Mr. and Mrs. George Lufkin
  7. German Reading Club
  8. Chippewa Valley Ladies' Aid (Jewish)
  9. Louis Levy
  10. Labor Organizations (A. T. Le Due)
  11. The Kepler Co
  12. Ninth Ward Social Center
  13. Knights of Maccabees
  14. Mrs. C. H. Ingram
  15. Tenths Ward Civic Center League
  16. Shawtown Ladies
  17. St. John's German Lutheran Church (Rev. A. F. Augustine)
  18. Our Saviour's Norwegian Lutheran Church
  19. E. B. Ingram
  20. Mt. Hope Church (Town of Brunswick)
  21. Christ Episcopal Church
  22. Helping Hand Society (Town of Washington
  23. U. C. T.
  24. King's Daughters of Shawtown
In closing, special mention may be made of the fine appearance of the building when it was lighted up.  It was remarked by several as they approached it in the evening, "that it had the appearance of a fine summer hotel in the mountains."


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