“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Gorman in Eastland County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)

Site of Blackwell Hospital

Site of Blackwell Hospital Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By James Hulse, November 21, 2020
1. Site of Blackwell Hospital Marker

Much of Eastland County's medical history can be traced to the work of two brothers, George and Edward Blackwell. George (1882-1955) attended Baylor Medical College and Northwestern University Medical School in Chicago, where Edward (1890-1956) also attended. Both men returned to Eastland County after receiving their degrees in 1907, George wed Frankie Brogdon, and in 1913, Edward wed her sister, Bessie. The two young physicians served in the U.S. Army Medical Corps during World War War I.

Following the war, the brothers opened the Blackwell Clinic in downtown Gorman, they soon realized the need for patient care facilities, and in 1919 they built Blackwell Sanitarium, later known as Blackwell Hospital, at this site. Frankie and Bessie prepared meals at the new facility, which utilized its own livestock as a source of meat, eggs, milk and butter. Nurses performed medical service, as well as housekeeping tasks, and the brothers treated patients at both the clinic and the hospital.

Contemporary to the hospital's opening, two large oilfields began drawing scores of new residents to the area, and the Hospital continued to grow
The Site of Blackwell Hospital Marker is on the left of the two markers. image. Click for full size.
Photographed By James Hulse, November 21, 2020
2. The Site of Blackwell Hospital Marker is on the left of the two markers.
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to meet demand. The brothers, who eventually moved their clinic to the hospital facilities, began to specialize and add new physicians to the staff. These included Dr. David V. Rodgers (1910-1971), George Blackwell's son-in-law who joined the staff in 1938 and assumed hospital leadership in the late 1950s.

In 1971, hospital administrators completed a larger building elsewhere. Having grown to become a four-story brick edifice, with doctor and dental offices, clinic and laboratory, the Old Blackwell Hospital building remained vacant until its demolition in 1989.
Erected 2005 by Texas Historical Commission. (Marker Number 13302.)
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Science & Medicine. A significant historical year for this entry is 1907.
Location. 32° 12.873′ N, 98° 40.563′ W. Marker is in Gorman, Texas, in Eastland County. Marker is at the intersection of West Roberts Road and Scurry Street, on the right when traveling west on West Roberts Road. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 445 West Roberts Road, Gorman TX 76454, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 11 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Dr. David Verle Rodgers (here, next to this marker); Desdemona Cemetery (approx. 7.8 miles away); Fort Blair, C.S.A. (approx. 8.2 miles away); Desdemona First Baptist Church
Site of Blackwell Hospital Marker - view from the street. image. Click for full size.
Photographed By James Hulse, November 21, 2020
3. Site of Blackwell Hospital Marker - view from the street.
(approx. 8½ miles away); First Baptist Church (approx. 9.7 miles away); Carbon City Jail (approx. 9.7 miles away); Carbon Methodist Church Building (approx. 9.8 miles away); Texas Central Railroad (approx. 10.9 miles away).
Regarding Site of Blackwell Hospital. Honoring Dr. David Verle Rodgers 1910-1971;

Verle was one of five children born to Don E. And Nanny L. Rodgers. He graduated from Gorman High School in 1927, attended Weatherford Junior College, Hardin-Simmons University and McMurry College in Abilene, and Texas Tech. He and Buryl Blackwell were married in 1932. Before being persuaded to go to Medical School by his father-in-law, Dr. George Blackwell, he was a schoolteacher at Alameda and as a Sunday school teacher, was active in church. He graduated from Baylor Medical School in 1937 and served his internship at the Baptist Hospital In New Orleans. In 1928 he began general practice in Gorman. In 1943 the third floor of Blackwell Hospital was completed, accompanied by the installation of an electric elevator; the fourth floor was added in 1947.

Dr. Rodgers endeared himself to countless families during his thirty-three year practice at Blackwell Hospital and Clinic. After many hours of seeing patients in the
Second Marker for Dr. David Rodgers image. Click for full size.
Photographed By James Hulse, November 21, 2020
4. Second Marker for Dr. David Rodgers
clinic, making rounds in the hospital and performing surgery, he otten made house calls, meeting patients' needs both day and night. He was a bank director at First National Bank, a rancher, a strong bridge player and served on the school board from 1945 until 1953 when severe heart trouble almost took his life.

By 1965, Dr. Rodgers was credited with having delivered over 8,300 babies, more than enough to populate Gorman 7 times, including three of his four children (George, Edward, Jim and Linda), one daughter-in-law and seven of his eight grandchildren. He touched the life of almost every person in Gorman and the surrounding area during the three decades of his medical practice. In June 1965, the cltizens of Gorman proclaimed a "Dr. D.V. Rodgers Appreciation Week." Dr. Rodgers was killed in an automobile accident January 3, 1971. His 6'4" frame carried a wealth of knowledge in the skills of the art of healing. In many hearts and many families the "Appreciation Week" will never end. Thank You "Doc" for your best.
Credits. This page was last revised on December 12, 2020. It was originally submitted on December 6, 2020, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas. This page has been viewed 160 times since then and 97 times this year. Last updated on December 11, 2020, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on December 6, 2020, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas. • J. Makali Bruton was the editor who published this page.

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Sep. 28, 2022