Throwback Thursday: National Hospital Day,… - Wyoming Medical Center

Throwback Thursday: National Hospital Day, May 12, 1941

By Kristy Bleizeffer May 12, 2021

Polio patients smile during Memorial Hospital's open house on May 11, 1941, in honor of National Hospital Day.

This week is National Hospital Week, a chance to celebrate hospitals and the men and women who support the health of their communities.

This poster was displayed in 12 store windows around town to announce National Hospital Day, May 12, 1941.
A Hospital Day window display in J.C. Penney.

In 1941, hospitals had just a single day to celebrate all they did for patients and families. The official National Hospital Day was on May 12 that year, and we hung these posters in 12 Casper businesses. J.C. Penney's created a window display for Memorial Hospital of Natrona County in its then downtown storefront.

Our big celebration, though, was on May 11, a Sunday, so that whole families could come and tour hospital departments - including our "special equipment built here for crippled patients," according to the Casper Tribune Herald.

The first National Hospital Day was in 1921 in honor of the birthday of Florence Nightingale, considered the founder of modern nursing· The day was conceived by a Chicago magazine editor as a public healthcare event to encourage trust in the city’s hospitals in the wake of the "Spanish flu" outbreak of 1918, which killed more than 600,000 Americans. The event expanded to an entire week in 1953.

A hospital is more than a place where people go to heal, it is a part of the community that fosters health and represents hope. From providing treatment and comfort to the sick, to welcoming new life into the world, hospitals are central to a healthy and optimistic community. Banner Wyoming Medical Center is honored to be your community hospital, this week and all the rest. Thank you for trusting us with your care.

Throwback Thursday

Throwback Thursday looks back on Wyoming Medical Center’s long, rich history in Natrona County. Special thanks to the Casper College Western History Center, which archives our vast collection of newspaper articles, photographs and other memorabilia; and to "Wyoming Medical Center: A Centennial History," by Rebecca A. Hunt, Ph.D.