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Board of Trustees of Memorial Hospital records

Identifier: Acc. 18

Scope and Contents

The records include one bound volume of the minutes of the Board of Trustees from 1899 to 1913. There are no minutes for 1906 to 1908. The records also include correspondence, resolutions and reports.


  • 1899-1913


Restrictions on Access

Collection is open to research.

Use Restrictions

There are no restrictions.

Biographical / Historical

In 1899, Drs. George Ben Johnston and Ennion G. Williams conceived the idea of building a large private hospital to serve the citizens of Richmond. Their idea was enthusiastically received and contributions for the proposed hospital were offered by some of Richmond's civic and philanthropic leaders. The Charlotte Williams Hospital Corporation was chartered on 13 October 1899 to erect a hospital and manage its affairs. Members of the original association included Robert S. Bosher, John L. Williams, E.T. D. Myers, William R. Trigg, John Skelton Williams, E. Randolph Williams, E. L. Bemiss, W. M. Habliston, C. W. Tanner, Fred E. Nolting and five physicians: Drs. George Ben Johnston, Christopher Tompkins, Lewis S. Bosher, H. H. Levy and Ennion G. Williams.

The proposed hospital and corporation was named in memory of John L. Williams' daughter Charlotte Randolph Williams who drowned on 7 July 1884 at Old Point Comfort. Williams gave $100,000 to the project and he and his three sons served on the Board of Trustees. In November of 1901 the Board of Trustees approved a name change for both the hospital and the corporation to Memorial Hospital.

The Board secured a site for the hospital at the corner of 12th and Broad Streets and construction of the hospital began on 22 June 1901. The "H" shaped building constructed of gray brick trimmed in stone and terra cotta was completed in 1903 at a cost of $198,000. The hospital opened to patients on 27 July 1903 with 64 private and 124 ward beds. From the outset the hospital served as a teaching facility for the faculty at the Medical College of Virginia (MCV).

The Board encountered numerous financial difficulties while managing the hospital. In 1904, it officially leased the hospital to MCV but the fiscal problems continued. The Board considered conveying the hospital to the City of Richmond in 1911 over the opposition of the MCV faculty. Ultimately the hospital was conveyed to the Medical College of Virginia as a condition of its merger with the University College of Medicine. The combined medical schools assumed the indebtedness of the Memorial Hospital and the Board of Trustees ceased to exist. The Board approved the conveyance of the Memorial Hospital on 20 March 1913.


0.4 Linear Feet (21 items)

Language of Materials



Records are arranged in chronological order.

Acquisition Information

Donor unknown; part of TML basement collection.

Processing Information

Originally accessioned 8 October 1975.

A Guide to the Records of the Board of Trustees of Memorial Hospital, 1899-1913
A Collection in Special Collections and Archives, Health Sciences Library, Virginia Commonwealth University, Collection number Acc. 18
Special Collections and Archives Staff
2004 By Copyright Virginia Commonwealth University. All Rights Reserved.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the VCU Health Sciences Library Repository

Special Collections and Archives 509 N 12th St
Box 980582
Richmond Virginia 23298 USA US
(804) 828-9898