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Developing Marshall Square, 1922-1926
Pastime Park On The North Side Of Town

In the spring of 1920, the old Pastime Park on North Oracle Road was designated Public Health Service Hospital #51. This action was taken because of the thousands of World War I veterans who crowded into Tucson looking for medical treatment. In the absence of a formal medical institution to provide for their needs, they began squatting at the park site. Local officials and the Red Cross made arrangements for the park to be converted into a cottage hospital.
In the spring of 1920, the old Pastime Park on North Oracle Road was designated
Public Health Service Hospital #51. This action was taken because of the thousands
of World War I veterans who crowded into Tucson looking for medical treatment, or
at least relief because of the warm, dry desert climate. In the absence of a formal
medical institution to provide for their needs, they began squatting at the park site.
Local officials and the Red Cross made arrangements for the park to be converted
into a cottage hospital.

A regular Army medical officer, and tubercular himself, Neill McArtan found his way to Tucson and to Pastime Park where he took up residence and became the first commanding officer after the facility was commissioned. The hospital had few assets to work with in the early days, but civic and religious organizations such as the Knights of Columbus provided enormous assistance to the invalids living at the Park.
A regular Army medical officer, and tubercular himself, Neill McArtan found his way
to Tucson and to Pastime Park where he took up residence and became the first
commanding officer after the facility was commissioned. The hospital had few assets to
work with in the early days, but civic and religious organizations such as the Knights of
Columbus provided enormous assistance to the invalids living at the Park.

A few buildings existed at Pastime Park when the veterans began to arrive in the winter of 1919. Originally developed as an amusement center, the owner Charles Loebs, had constructed two large adobe structures; one to house a tavern, the other a dance hall and skating rink. The former was converted into a surgical and infirmary ward, while the latter became a kitchen and dining room.

Additional wood frame buildings were eventually added to expand hospital wards and provide administrative spaces. Additional wood frame buildings were eventually added to expand hospital wards and provide administrative spaces.

To house ambulatory patients, 50 cottages were constructed during the spring of 1920. Each cottage housed four men and were designed to maximize exposure to fresh air and sunshine. Note the reclining chairs located outside the cottages where the men would lie about in all weather taking the "rest cure." To house ambulatory patients, 50 cottages were constructed during the spring of 1920. Each cottage housed four men and were designed to maximize exposure to fresh air and sunshine. Note the reclining chairs located outside the cottages where the men would lie about in all weather taking the "rest cure."

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