|City/Town: • El Dorado|
|Location Class: • Hospital|
|Year Built: • 1921 | Year Abandoned: • 2015|
|Status: • Abandoned • For Sale|
|Photojournalist: • James Kirkendall|
In 1919 construction began on the initial portion of El Dorado’s hospital. It was financed by Paul Brown and local businessmen. The hospital cost approximately $300,000 and was named in memory of Paul Brown’s Father. On January 10, 1921 the doors of the Warner Brown Hospital were opened and in full operation with 68 patient beds and employing 10 people. On Nov 30, 1927 the administration of the Warner Brown Hospital was shifted to the Catholic Sisters of Mercy in Little Rock.
El Dorado’s population grew rapidly due to industry in the oil boom in the 1920’s. At El Dorado’s peak the population was over 20,000. In the 1940’s the Sisters of Mercy realized an expansion program was needed. This expansion was to be funded by community donations, government grants, and the Sisters themselves. On June 13, 1954 the new annex was completed with a 130 bed capacity and hospital staff of 256.
On March 21, 1971 the Sisters of Mercy donated the hospital to the community of El Dorado and Union County. The community involved an advisory board who administrated the hospital as an Arkansas nonprofit corporation. The Arkansas Department of Health deemed the current property to be insufficient in space. In 1972 the advisory board contracted with The Baldwin Company to add the additional six floor annex by loans and donations. The cost was approximately $7,000,000.00 to complete.
In the more recent years the Warner Brown Hospital has been in the ownership of the Medical Center of South Arkansas. The ownership has been deeded to private development and will be extensively renovated for the use as a Veterans health hospital.
El Dorado Daily News , Barton Library
WARNING!: Special permission was obtained to take photographs. The Warner Brown Hospital complex is monitored 24/7 and patrolled by the El Dorado Police Department.