On the Porch

In early 1944, at the request of Mayor Ray Baldwin (mayor 1943-1946), the Marshall City Council appointed what was known as a City Post War Planning Board. This board was charged with the responsibility of making suggestions to the city council concerning plans for Marshall in the future. During the course of monthly meetings, the need of a new hospital became the No.1 project. At this time in 1944, Marshall had two hospitals, which were operated as proprietorships: Dr. Gray’s Marshall Hospital located on South 4th Street and the Anna Maria Memorial Hospital located at 601 W. Lyon St.

At a subsequent Rotary Club meeting, Julius Weiner conceived the idea of a gift to the city of Marshall as a memorial to his father Louis. After many meetings, a site was purchased by the city of Marshall from Herman and Mary Van Uden, comprised of about 15 acres known as Morningside Heights.

During the planning process, Julius and Ben Weiner offered to give $150,000 toward the building of a hospital if the city would furnish additional necessary funds. The conditions of the gift included a provision that the hospital should be named the Louis Weiner Memorial Hospital in memory of their father. On Oct. 19, 1945, a city resolution was passed accepting this gift.

The selected architects, Ellerbe and Company, estimated the cost of a 50-bed hospital at approximately $450,000. On Jan. 1, 1946, a general obligation bond of $150,000 was sold by the city, and the Hasslen Construction Company was the successful bidder on the general contract. On June 1, 1949, an additional general obligation bond was sold in the amount of $150,000 to complete the financing of the building program.

The original hospital was completed and dedicated in May 1950, and the first patients were moved in on June 1, 1950. After about nine years of operation, more room was needed, including certain services and patient rooms. The construction of the new wing was undertaken and financed by a Hill-Burton Grant of $167,500, money taken from the hospital operating fund in the amount of $97,000 and the first hospital revenue bond sold in the state of Minnesota in the amount of $125,000. The new wing costing $390,000 was completed in 1962 without cost to the taxpayers.

The photograph featured this week from the museum’s collection shows the hospital at the time it opened in 1950.The Lyon County Historical Society is a nonprofit, member-supported organization. For more information on membership, research, volunteering, or the museum’s collection, please contact us at 537-6580 or director@lyoncomuseum.org. Like our page and follow us on Facebook.