This week’s Hill-Burton hospital, located over in the tiny county seat of DeKalb, had this eye-catching rendering in New Hospitals and Health Departments for Mississippi, which was published by the Mississippi Commission on Hospital Care around 1950. As you may remember, the Hill-Burton Act set up a funding mechanism for states to build public hospitals and health clinics, and by the end of the first five years of the program, Mississippi was a leader in getting these built.
I went in search of the Kemper County Hospital online, since I haven’t been to DeKalb in a while, and I found a brief record in the MDAH Historic Resources Database that didn’t have much text but did give us a map location and some fairly recent pictures (complete with a Christmassy bear theme since they were taken in December). The pictures show the building has had a few changes (or maybe a few items shown in the rendering didn’t get built exactly that way), but overall, this is still a cool modernist building. The raised clerestory or lightwell represented in that higher section of roof near the entrance appears to be covered up, which I suspect came about because it leaked, but it’s still there if someone wanted to let a little light back in.
Although a newer hospital has been built up the road a ways, the old county hospital still appears to be in use as some sort of medical facility and shares its lot with the local department of human services.
More Hill-Burton and other medical wonders . . .
Categories: Architectural Research, Hospitals/Medical, Modernism
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