Oct. 22, 1944, in The Star: Anniston’s new hospital opens tomorrow and after all its patients are transferred from Garner Hospital — expected to be at least an all-day endeavor — the latter will be closed. Memorial Hospital was constructed and equipped at a federal contract price of $530,000, while the city of Anniston will buy it from federal authorities for $180,000, the debt to be amortized over 10 years. After the city assumes ownership, the new hospital will be regarded as a full-fledged municipal function. The hospital has 100 adult beds, five youth beds and 24 bassinets; capacity can be increased by 35 beds in case of an emergency. Construction began July 12, 1943; virtually all phases of planning and construction were complicated by the shortage of materials and labor due to the war. At one point, for example, the War Production Board turned down the entire project because the building was to be five stories tall and not enough steel could be made available to build something that size here. Also this date: H. L. Crim, a resident of Anniston since April 1898, when he joined the Louisville & Nashville Railroad Company as a fireman, then served as an engineer starting in 1902, retired yesterday. Recalling the early days of the city, Mr. Crim said that when he came here, the Opera House was the only place of amusement and there were no private businesses located north of 13th Street on Noble. Indeed, he said, beyond 13th Street, “I often saw corn growing.” Additionally: Anniston’s Bulldogs swamped Pell City in an easy, 27 to 0, encounter Friday night at Memorial Stadium. The opening Anniston lineup included replacements Billy Wheeler and Richard Hearn at the ends, Horace Holmsley at tackle and George Nichopolous in the backfield.

Oct. 22, 1994, in The Star: Fifty years later, Pell City endured another scoreless game against the Bulldogs. Anniston beat the Panthers last night on the same Bulldog home field by virtually the same score — 28-0 — as it did on Oct. 20, 1944. (It would have been literally the same score if Frank Griffin hadn’t missed an extra point a half-century ago.) Also this date: A new contract with the Department of Defense means Regional Medical Center might soon be drawing more patients from military families — and from other area hospitals.  RMC has become part of the CHAMPUS Select health Care network, meaning the government will get a discount on the cost of health care, while RMC will get first chance at treating some area CHAMPUS patients, who number in the thousands. CHAMPUS is the government-provided health insurance that pays for the needs of dependents of active-duty personnel and military retirees and their dependents.

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