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Get Well Soon: 1941

Get Well Soon: 1941

March 1941. "Charity ward, Saint Vincent's Hospital, Norfolk, Virginia." Medium format acetate negative by John Vachon for the Farm Security Administration. View full size.


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Matthew 5:3-12

Prior to modern times most people had no medical insurance (if it even existed) and those not well off were dependent on charity if seriously ill or injured. Charity hospitals have existed since antiquity but became common in Christian countries during medieval times and remained so until fairly recently. In the United States the Roman Catholic Church with its army of nuns became the largest charitable institution supporting orphanages, schools and hospitals for the destitute. This hospital was founded in 1855 as the Hospital of St. Vincent de Paul during a yellow fever epidemic. The original building was willed to the Daughters of Charity by a wealthy lady who expired from the illness. The hospital is still running today under the name of Bon Secours DePaul Medical Center and is the oldest Catholic Hospital in the Old Dominion. And it is still providing for the poor and marginalized.

A very popular chap

Judging from the cards and flowers, this is a very popular chap. He looks well on the way to charming the nurse, too. That's quite a headdress she's wearing. I'd think it'd get in her way.

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