Group Title: Historic St. Augustine: Block 28 Lot 2, Military Hospital
Title: [Brochure for Military Hospital]
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 Material Information
Title: Brochure for Military Hospital
Series Title: Historic St. Augustine: Block 28 Lot 2, Military Hospital
Physical Description: Brochure/pamphlet
Language: English
Physical Location:
Box: 7
Divider: Block 28 Lot 2 (Spanish Military Hospital)
Folder: Block 28 - 2, Military Hospital
Subject: Saint Augustine (Fla.)
3 Aviles Street (Saint Augustine, Fla.)
Spanish Military Hospital (Saint Augustine, Fla.)
Spatial Coverage: North America -- United States of America -- Florida -- Saint Johns -- Saint Augustine -- 3 Aviles Street
Coordinates: 29.891837 x -81.311598
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00094843
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: B28-L2

Full Text


Early in 1966 the St. Augustine
Historical Restoration and Preserva-
tion Commission reconstructed on its
original foundations the Spanish
Military Hospital as it appeared in
the 1790's. Upon its completion a
suggestion was made by Dr. William
M. Straight, historian of the Florida
Medical Association, that the build-
ing be utilized as a medical museum.
The idea was enthusiastically re-
ceived by the Commission, and plans
were accordingly drawn. A local co-
ordinating committee, headed by Dr.
James DeVito, was appointed and
funds sought from the Medical As-
sociation's membership beginning in
1967. By the end of 1968 donations
from the organization's Executive
Board plus county medical associa-
tions and individual members were
sufficient to complete preparation of
the ground floor for public viewing;
this included placement of costumed
mannequins in the offices and wards,
earlier provided with antique furni-
ture by the Restoration Commission.
Financing of second-floor exhibits
is now underway. Historical surgical
and medical instruments and equip-
ment are also being sought in order
to complete the story of Florida's
medical history.




On the south side of St. Augustine's
historic main plaza, on Aviles Street,
there stood during the 18th century
a Spanish government hospital. Dur-
ing the British occupation of the
city 1763-1783 a Scottish-born car-
penter and builder named William
Watson purchased and remodeled into
a dwelling some stables which were
located across the street. Several
years thereafter he built a new home
a few steps to the southeast and his
former home was made into a con-
valescent home. Soon after the
Spanish retook possession of the town
a fire destroyed the old hospital. In
1791 the government purchased the
convalescent home and modified it for
use as a military hospital. The pres-
ent structure has been reconstructed
on original foundations to recreate
the 18th century building as authen-
tically as possible, inside and out.


Six rooms and a large loggia com-
prise the original service area on the
ground floor of the hospital building.
Entrance from the street is into a
waiting-room, part of which is the
grille-enclosed pharmacy with antique
apothecary jars and equipment. Three
doors from this room provide access
to the morgue with its uniformed
"corpse" on view to prayerful re-
latives, the doctor's office wherein
surgery was also performed, and the
officers' ward. This ward has typical
roped beds with straw mattresses, and
is slightly larger and airier than the
enlisted men's room behind it. The
latter has, in addition to similar beds
for non-commissioned officers, a long
shelf covered with straw mats to ac-
commodate four lowly privates (8 in
an emergency). A small isolation
ward is at the rear of the building.
All wards have access doors to the
loggia for sun and air. Second-floor
rooms were the living quarters of
attending personnel.

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