Thursday, November 4, 2021

But enough of craptastic news - how about something else

Rebuilt Army Navy Hospital

A bit above Bathhouse Row in Hot Springs, is a rather brooding, mammoth building. It is the Army Navy Hospital. It has a rather long and interesting history. In 1877 it opened as the first hospital for both Army AND Navy personnel (the precursor to the Veterans Hospital system). 

It is one of the few in the country were the Army AND Navy logos are on the gates, as was built before a separate Air Force, Marine Corps and Space Force were created.

On the left are the Crossed Swords and Rifles of the Army. On the right are the Cannons and Anchors of the Navy.

In the 1930s, the old building (image at bottom) was replaced by this oddly Deco / "Oriental" building of 421 beds. (Note: "Oriental" was a stated style that was based on the Ottoman / Aragbic style as understood at the time. Rounded domes, Roman style wings and often different colors).

An impressive view from the "Grand Walkway" below.

Another image.

IN addition to the military, the Hospital also offered a free bathhouse of the Hot Springs waters to the indigent and minorities. Original access to the baths was through the gate image at the top.

There are other scatterings of the history of the military contributions to the city / national park as well. Including two stone bandstands (one still standing) where the Military Bands gave free performances. Many of the trails above the city were built for and used by recovering military.

In any event it was cool and dominating. I liked it.

Original hospital built in 1877 and replaced in 1930s. It sits above most Bath Houses before they were all remodeled.


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