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MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Ralston in Park County, Wyoming — The American West (Mountains)
 

Hospital Complex:

Health Service In Relocation Center

 
 
Hospital Complex: Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, September 14, 2015
1. Hospital Complex: Marker
Captions: (middle left) Mrs. Mari Yashida looks at her baby through the window of the nursery.; (top right) Ambulance at the obstetrics ward at the hospital at Heart Mountain, November 1943.; (middle right) New arrivals receiving medical checkup.; (bottom right) Baby checkup at the hospital.
Inscription. Directly in front of you was the hospital complex. The structures remaining are the boiler house and chimney, two slabs that were warehouse foundations, one building that was the kitchen and dining room, and one building that was the ambulance office, emergency room and surgery room. The white building to the right was an administration apartment.
The 150-bed hospital complex opened on August 27, 1942 with Dr. Charles Irwin as the Chief Medical Officer. The hospital consisted of 17 wings built from barracks and connected by a long central hallway. Velma Berryman Kessel of Powell Wyoming, who was a registered nurse at the camp, recalls "The hallway, which had windows on each side, was not heated so it was like an oven in the summer and frigid in the winter." The hospital was self-contained with steam heat, laundry and kitchen facilities. When fully staffed, there were 9 physicians, 11 dentists, 3 optometrists, 10 registered nurses, 49 nurse's aides, 10 pharmacists and an ambulance service. Doctors staffing the hospital were internees. Nurses were both Caucasian and internees, nurse's aides were internees. Internee doctors were paid $19 per month, the same as a U.S. Army private. The Caucasian nurses were paid $150 per month, the internee nurses $16 per month and the aides $12.
The Health Services Section provided dental,
Hospital Complex: Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, September 14, 2015
2. Hospital Complex: Marker
The Hospital Complex marker is above and behind the plaque in the foreground.
clinical, optometry, limited x-ray and laboratory services. Among the illnesses treated in the wards were pneumonia, croup, sore throats, earaches, flu, diarrhea, cancer, cardiac problems, diabetes, stroke, high blood pressure, ulcers and depression. The stress of incarceration added to health problems for the internees. Accidents, resulting in broken bones, cuts and burns, were common. The majority of surgeries were tonsillectomies and appendectomies. Specialty or complicated cases were referred to hospitals in Billings, Montana. The center's hospital delivered baby formula to mothers by ambulance 24 hours a day. The ambulance drivers answered an average of thirteen emergency calls per day. The outpatient clinic saw about 130 persons per day.
The first of 566 babies born at the center was delivered Sept. 4, 1942, a boy named William Shigeru, the seventh child of Mr. and Mrs. Akiyo Miyatani, formerly of Anaheim, California. Those born at Heart Mountain came into the world as American citizens behind a barbed wire fence erected by their own government.
 
Erected by Heart Mountain, Wyoming Foundation.
 
Location. 44° 40.23′ N, 108° 56.935′ W. Marker is near Ralston, Wyoming, in Park County. Marker can be reached from Road 19 near Lane 15, on the left when traveling west. Click for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1474 Road 19, Ralston WY 82440, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Heart Mountain, Wyoming - Fall 1943 (within shouting distance of this marker); Relocation Center Support Facilities (within shouting distance of this marker); Heart Mountain Relocation Center Honor Roll and Flag Pole (within shouting distance of this marker); Barracks Living Area: (within shouting distance of this marker); Daniel K. Inouye (within shouting distance of this marker); Norman Y. Mineta (within shouting distance of this marker); Heart Mountain World War II Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker); M.P. Station, Guard Tower, Rail & Train Station (within shouting distance of this marker). Click for a list of all markers in Ralston.
 
More about this marker. Heart Mountain Relocation Camp is located off of the Powell Highway (U.S. Highway 14A) about 6 miles south of Ralston. This marker is located on the Setsuko Saito Higuchi Memorial Walking Tour near the Heart Mountain Relocation Center Memorial Park.
 
Categories. Asian AmericansScience & MedicineWar, World II
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page has been viewed 152 times since then and 16 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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