As early as 1876 “the Dr. Smedley house” on South College Street is shown on a map of Harrodsburg. John Smedley was a successful druggist and physician who saw patients in his home as well as making house calls. In 1914, this grand old brick house was torn down to make way for the construction of the A. D. Price Memorial Hospital.
The A. D. Price Memorial Hospital was built in 1915 and was dedicated in remembrance of the contribution of Dr. Ansel Daniel Price, “one of the most universally loved men who ever lived in our community and a widely known physician in central Kentucky.” This 20 bed hospital served for 34 years, until 1949, when a larger one was needed.
The top photograph shows the surgery and delivery room at the A. D. Price Memorial Hospital in 1949, just prior to its being torn down. In spite of its primitive appearance compared to modern standards, it served the community well, with over 2,000 successful deliveries reported. Rooms were set up to accommodate four to six patients per room with no air conditioning or television.
The above photograph shows a patient either being transported to or from the hospital. Emergency vehicles or ambulances were scarce and funeral home hearses were commonly used as transport. They appear to be using a home-made platform to get patients from the building to the vehicle.
Anna Elliott Bohon, in the above photograph, was a registered nurse who came to Harrodsburg, in 1926 as the superintendent of the A. D. Price Memorial Hospital. At that time the hospital had one nurse and no patients. By the end of the year, there were four nurses and a growing patient load. In 1939, she was elected to the hospital’s board of directors and from 1940 to 1963, served as its president. Under her presidency, the hospital secured foundation grants and bought the land for the construction of the James B. Haggin Memorial Hospital, which was dedicated in 1949. She was an organizer of the Mercer County Health Department and founder of the Mercer County Cancer Drive. In 1964, a new annex to Haggin Hospital was dedicated in her honor. She was a true community leader and in 1962 was named “Woman of the Year” by the Harrodsburg Woman’s Club. She died at the age of 100 in 1993.