Photo, Print, Drawing Ellis Island, Contagious Disease Hospital Measles Ward A, New York Harbor, New York County, NY
About this Item
- Ellis Island, Contagious Disease Hospital Measles Ward A, New York Harbor, New York County, NY
- Historic American Buildings Survey, creator
- Taylor, James Knox, architect
- Office of the Supervising Architect, Treasury Department
- U.S. Public Health Service
- Arzola, Robert R, project manager
- Davidson, Lisa Pfueller, historian
Created / Published
- Documentation compiled after 1933
- - hip roofs
- - Georgian Revival architectural elements
- - hospital wards
- - ventilation
- - pavilions
- - stucco
- - reinforced concrete construction
- - quoins
- - immigrants
- - medicine
- - New York -- New York County
Latitude / Longitude
- - Significance: Measles Ward A, later known as Wards 17 and 18, was one of eight identical measles pavilions constructed for the Contagious Disease Hospital complex on Island 3 of the Ellis Island U. S. Immigration Station. Its construction in 1907-08 greatly expanded the hospital facilities run by the U. S. Public Health and Marine Hospital Service (after 1912, U. S. Public Health Service, or USPHS) in conjunction with the Bureau of Immigration at Ellis Island. Concerns about the spread of contagious diseases such as measles, scarlet fever, and trachoma (an eye disease that could lead to blindness) prompted Ellis Island officials to lobby for an expanded hospital capability on the island itself, rather than transporting these cases to medical facilities throughout New York City. This effort represents both compassion in providing highly professional medical care for ill immigrants and fears regarding urban public health and the potential diseases carried by arriving aliens. In later decades the function of the USPHS hospitals at Ellis Island shifted to include caring for a complex mix of immigrants, detainees, merchant seaman, service members and other local citizens eligible for government medical care. Measles Ward A and the Contagious Disease Hospital were designed by James Knox Taylor, the Supervising Architect of the Treasury. The Office of the Supervising Architect was responsible for the design of federal facilities, in this case working for the Department of Commerce and Labor in consultation with the USPHS surgeons assigned to Ellis Island. The Contagious Disease Hospital was a mature example of a pavilion plan hospital, a form favored since its establishment in Europe during the nineteenth century and in the United States largely since after the Civil War. Self-contained ward pavilions were arranged for maximum healthful ventilation and light and linked to administration, kitchen, and staff quarters by covered corridors. Each pavilion floor had a spacious open ward with large windows on three sides and independent ventilation ducts. A hall leading to the connecting corridor was flanked by bathrooms, nurses' duty room, offices, and a serving kitchen. Measles Ward A and the various Island 3 Contagious Disease Hospital buildings were unified by Georgian Revival exteriors, with red tile roofs, pebble and dash stucco wall treatment, and red brick quoins and details. This decorative mode complemented the Georgian Revival monumentality of the Island 2 general hospital while the detailing and lower scale of the new hospital made it visually distinct. The USPHS vacated the hospital facilities on March 1, 1951 and the U.S. Coast Guard Port Security Unit at Ellis Island used portions of the Island 3 hospital for file storage. The Ellis Island U. S. Immigration Station ceased operation on November 12, 1954 and the complex was largely unoccupied until it was made part of the Statue of Liberty National Monument in 1965, under the administration of the U. S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service. Measles Ward A remains as one of the most intact examples of an original pavilion ward, with few alterations and many surviving original features.
- - Unprocessed Field note material exists for this structure: N1677
- - Survey number: HABS NY-6086-T
- - Building/structure dates: 1907 Initial Construction
- - National Register of Historic Places NRIS Number: 66000058
- Photo(s): 12
- Measured Drawing(s): 8
- Data Page(s): 41
- Photo Caption Page(s): 1
Call Number/Physical Location
- HABS NY-6086-T
- Historic American Buildings Survey (Library of Congress)
- Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.pnp/pp.print
- No known restrictions on images made by the U.S. Government; images copied from other sources may be restricted. https://www.loc.gov/rr/print/res/114_habs.html
- Arzola, Robert R
- Davidson, Lisa Pfueller
- Historic American Buildings Survey
- Office of the Supervising Architect, Treasury Department
- Taylor, James Knox
- U.S. Public Health Service
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Cite This Item
Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.
Chicago citation style:
Historic American Buildings Survey, Creator, James Knox Taylor, Treasury Department Office Of The Supervising Architect, U.S. Public Health Service, Robert R Arzola, and Lisa Pfueller Davidson. Ellis Island, Contagious Disease Hospital Measles Ward A, New York Harbor, New York County, NY. New York New York County, 1933. Documentation Compiled After. Photograph. https://www.loc.gov/item/ny2377/.
APA citation style:
Historic American Buildings Survey, C., Taylor, J. K., Office Of The Supervising Architect, T. D., U.S. Public Health Service, Arzola, R. R. & Davidson, L. P. (1933) Ellis Island, Contagious Disease Hospital Measles Ward A, New York Harbor, New York County, NY. New York New York County, 1933. Documentation Compiled After. [Photograph] Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/ny2377/.
MLA citation style:
Historic American Buildings Survey, Creator, et al. Ellis Island, Contagious Disease Hospital Measles Ward A, New York Harbor, New York County, NY. Documentation Compiled After. Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <www.loc.gov/item/ny2377/>.