Infirmary

Title

Infirmary

Subject

[no text]

Description

The establishment of the infirmary buildings was a direct response to the Scarlet Fever epidemic of 1912 that left four Massachusetts Agricultural College students dead. The infirmary, which is now known as the University Health Services, did not stand on the corner of Infirmary Way and Thatcher Road, but was located further up from President’s Hill Road.

The Board of Trustees decided to purchase a vacant lot next to the Massachusetts Agricultural College known as the Whitmareth property to use for an infirmary. The establishment of an infirmary was especially important due to the lack of a medical establishment with medical personnel equipped to deal with a wide spread epidemic. With that being said, the legislature and the Board of Trustees of 1913 appointed fifteen thousand dollars to the Massachusetts Agricultural College to build an infirmary in the fall of 1914 in order to contain another string of illnesses. The very first infirmary building was a brick building that included wards designed for the patients and other rooms for nurses and primary caregivers. The second infirmary building was designated “the isolation ward,” where patients with terminal or highly contagious diseases were able to be treated without infecting others. Once the infirmary buildings were the completed, the Massachusetts Agricultural College was one step closer to the expanded campus it is today.

The infirmary buildings became a major part of the University’s campus, especially during the 1960s and 1970s when the Sexual Revolution affected many of the university’s Undergraduate students' lives. This era saw an emphasis on sexual and psychological health, and the college needed a space to have all these services in one epicenter. The Infirmary became the Health Center and the center for not only physical healing but psychological and sexual healing as well. As the Health Center became the focal point for various degrees of healing, the need for the Health Center grew. The Infirmary no longer proved to be spacious enough and needed to be replaced. The current University Health Services on the corner of Infirmary Way and Thatcher Road replaced the infirmary. While the new UHS building became the new focal point of medical care, the old ones were recycled and used as the music cottages for the university.

Creator

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Source

UMass Special Collections and University Archives

Publisher

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Date

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Contributor

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Rights

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Relation

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Format

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Language

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Type

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Identifier

RG150-0004589, RG150-0004606, RG150-0004607

Coverage

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Original Format

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Physical Dimensions

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Files

RG150-0004589.png
RG150-0004606.png
RG150-0004607.png
RG150-00012989.png
RG150-00012990.png
Date Added
August 31, 2012
Collection
Orchard Hill
Item Type
Still Image
Citation
“Infirmary,” Lost UMass, accessed April 24, 2017, http://lostumass.omeka.net/items/show/26.