Local history: A hospital for Chattanooga

Contributed photo / Baroness Marguerite Mathilde Slidell d’Erlanger

(Editor's note: Second of three parts)

Hamilton County was chartered in 1819 and Chattanooga in 1839, an indication that population was increasing. However, by the 1880s, Chattanooga and Hamilton County had no hospital. The hospitals that had dotted the landscape during the U.S. Civil War had disappeared, and efforts to create a community hospital had failed. But in 1888 the newly created Chattanooga-Hamilton County Hospital Board met for the first time. Item No. 1 on the agenda was the identification of possible funding for a community hospital.

In an interesting twist of fate, others were pondering the same question. That same year, the Cincinnati Southern Railroad and the Alabama Great Southern Railroad -- the Queen and Crescent -- repurposed an older building to create a new passenger railroad station in Chattanooga at Market Street and Union Street.