Today in NC State History: A modern infirmary for campus

February 15, 2013
By Bill Krueger

blog_series6For years, the Carroll Infirmary was the place for students at NC State to go if they were feeling sick, broke a bone or otherwise needed the care of a doctor or nurse.

But health care on campus took a big leap forward when, on this day in 1944, the college infirmary moved from Carroll to the newly remodeled Clark Hall. A headline in the Technician said the new infirmary was the largest and most modern such facility among non-medical colleges in the southeast.

“Clark Hall will give the infirmary much needed space, and with its new equipment will enable the staff to provide better and more efficient medical care for both civilian students and Army personnel stationed on the campus,” read the story.

The mention of Army personnel was significant, for it was the Army that forced the move to a new infirmary, according to an account in North Carolina State University: A Narrative History, by Alice Elizabeth Reagan. Army inspectors condemned the Carroll Infirmary, and then the federal government provided the money to turn Clark Hall into an infirmary.

Dr. A.C. Campbell, head of the infirmary staff, tends to a student in this 1950 photo (courtesy of Historical State)

Dr. A.C. Campbell, head of the infirmary staff, tends to a student in 1950 (Photo courtesy of Historical State)

Clark Hall had initially been a dormitory, but campus officials completely renovated the four-story building to to turn it into a proper infirmary. The first floor had a treatment room, a clinical lab and a X-ray laboratory, while 94 hospital beds were housed on the second and third floors. The second floor also included a dentist’s office, a new addition to the infirmary. The fourth floor was not yet finished, but was to be available as an “isolation ward” in case of emergencies.

The Technician story also noted another exciting feature of the new infirmary — a “fully automatic elevator” that was large enough to accommodate stretchers.

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