Discuss Detroit Archives - January 2008 William Booth Hospital Detroit Previous Next
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Scs_scooter
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Username: Scs_scooter

Post Number: 54
Registered: 07-2006
Posted on Thursday, March 13, 2008 - 4:21 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

In doing a geneology search, I finally found that I was born at Wm Booth Hospital in Detroit. I was then given up for adoption and spent time in the care of the Michigan Children's Aid Society before my adoption was finalized. This was in 1958. My birth Mom was a young girl from Port Huron. You know the story...the daughter turns up pregnant and off to "Europe" she goes for the holidays! In this case, "Europe" was Detroit. Turn the knob on the way-back machine. Where was Wm Booth Hospital? Any info would be great!
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Detroit_stylin
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Username: Detroit_stylin

Post Number: 5609
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Thursday, March 13, 2008 - 4:22 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I believe it was one of the original hospitals in the DMC. Seems like I saw a historical marker there.
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Jjaba
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Username: Jjaba

Post Number: 6187
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Thursday, March 13, 2008 - 6:09 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Scs, William Booth Hospital of the Salvation Army was located at 130 W. Grand Blvd., Detroit, MI 48216-1657.

This location is on the eastside of the blvd. just South of W. Fort St. near the Detroit River.
Other than some truck parking lots, there may not be much evidence of the institution which served you back then.

William Booth founded the Salvation Army in England and various hospitals and agencies were named for him. Perhaps you can make contact with the Salvation Army today in Detroit to see what archives they may have for you.

jjaba, Proudly Westside.
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Stinger4me
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Username: Stinger4me

Post Number: 209
Registered: 08-2007
Posted on Thursday, March 13, 2008 - 6:52 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

At one time, The Extension Branch of the Detroit Public Library delivered books there on a regular basis. The Booth Hospital was not a large hospital. This would have been back in the mid to late 60's. It was not the only place where the staff delivered books. The served the Arnold home on W. 7 Mile Rd. and other facilities of that type in addition to the two bookmobiles which operated out of the office. The office was at the rear of the Utley branch library on Woodward just south of King.
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Detroit_stylin
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Username: Detroit_stylin

Post Number: 5610
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Thursday, March 13, 2008 - 7:21 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Oh ok so maybe I was off by a block or two....:-)
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Scs_scooter
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Username: Scs_scooter

Post Number: 55
Registered: 07-2006
Posted on Thursday, March 13, 2008 - 8:16 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Thank you for the info. I think a quick road trip is in order to 130 W Grand Blvd this weekend. First for pictures and then for a visit to the Salvation Army in Detroit. Thanks!
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Rickinatlanta
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Username: Rickinatlanta

Post Number: 140
Registered: 07-2006
Posted on Thursday, March 13, 2008 - 10:30 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I was born at Booth Memorial on 8/14/1952. Back then it was also run by the Salvation Army as a hospital for those who couldn't afford the cost of a hospital stay. Although my Dad worked on a loading dock for United Trucking and Mom was a maid, they had to rely on Booth to bring me into this world. I recall seeing the building in the 1960's but sure didn't place any importance on it. There were several natural gas storage tanks behind Booth that Mom used to tell me how she could hear the sound of the tanks expanding/contracting as the volume of gas changed. I wish now that I had at least taken a picture of Booth. In later years, Booth changed to be exclusively a hospital for unwed mothers. Interestingly enough, the Salvation Army had Booth Memorial Hospitals around the country so it wasn't exclusive to Detroit.
Good to know you "birth brother/sister"...:-)
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Ruthie1
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Username: Ruthie1

Post Number: 12
Registered: 01-2008
Posted on Thursday, March 13, 2008 - 10:51 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I also was born at Booth Memorial Hospital in Oct., 1949. Thank you Jjaba and Rick for the info. I learned some things about the hospital I never knew, such as they were connected to the Salvation army. My dad worked at the Ford Motor Co. in tool and dye, so he made a decent enough income, and had health insurance I'm sure. With both my parents gone, I can't ask them. Very interesting! And, thanks to all the posters who added info.
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Jjaba
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Username: Jjaba

Post Number: 6188
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 1:02 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The William Booth Memorial Hospitals began as a result of other hospitals who would not admit unwed mothers or mothers of low incomes. When the bigger hospitals relaxed and admitted such patients, the Booth Hospitals became Booth Memoprial Homes where unwed mothers could reside and gain schooling before and after delivery.

Often, they were shunned from their families and were left to their own devices. Without Booth, these women were destined to the streets for survival. Many were from smaller towns, where families were unable to cope with the realities of unplanned and unwanted pregnancies. Booth provided food, shelter, eduation, and pre-natal care, plus arrangements for adoptions, foster care, welfare assistances, spiritual uplifting, and continual love and counselling.

The Salvation Army is still in this service today, providing shelter for unwed mothers, recovering addicts, mentally challenged, and recently released prisoners. These shelters serve people who have great difficulties finding safe and sanitary housing arrangements to meet their needs.

jjaba, Westsider.
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Jjaba
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Username: Jjaba

Post Number: 6189
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 1:27 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

There are four regional offices with records of the Booth Memorial Hospitals. Most of the hospitals have closed due to the acceptance of unwed mothers in community hospitals and liberalized acceptance within their families.

Exceptions to this are places like Boise, Idaho which has an active Booth Home with high school attacted, staffed by Boise Public Schools.It has operated since 1921, first as a hospital where birth occured with visiting doctors delivering babies, and now with women living and schooling there, birthing in a community hospital with after-care and day care serivces post-birth.

Michigan records are kept at Central Booth Memorial Hospitals Territory Headquarters.

10 W. Algonquin Rd.
Des Plaines, Illinois 60016-6006.
Contact: Astrid Steinsland (1-847-294-2090)

astridsteinsland@usc.salvation army.org

jjaba.
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Jrvass
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Username: Jrvass

Post Number: 515
Registered: 01-2007
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 2:33 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

jjaba,

You seem to know, or research, a lot about the Salvation Army.

Friday (today) I am taking my Mom's ink jet printer and parallel cable to them for a donation. It still works.

But we were able to talk Mom into a laser printer, copier, fax machine. It is also a corded phone and PC fax... but I doubt she'll use either of those features. Brother MFC-7220, on sale at Office Max until 3/15 for 25% off!

FYI... print the sale price off the Office Max website, in case the cashier doesn't get the right discount scan and needs to justify a price override.
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Aiw
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Username: Aiw

Post Number: 6579
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 8:08 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

SCS, save the drive, you're about a year too late. The hospital was just recently demolished.
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Rickinatlanta
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Username: Rickinatlanta

Post Number: 141
Registered: 07-2006
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 8:15 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Take the drive anyway and at least see the area where you were born. I'm apparently mistaken but I've driven by the site many times over the last several years and Booth has been gone for awhile now.

I've also tried the e-mail to "astrid" @ the Salvation Army with no response so that link may be several years old.
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Gingellgirl
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Username: Gingellgirl

Post Number: 157
Registered: 04-2007
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 8:18 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Does anyone have information on the Florence Crittenton Maternity Home, 11850 Woodrow Wilson? This was also a maternity hospital for unwed mothers.
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Aiw
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Username: Aiw

Post Number: 6580
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 8:28 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Actually SCS, it was summer of 2006.

When I took these shots next door: http://internationalmetropolis.com/?p=155 the building was nearly totally demolished.

Thanks to the slow updates to aerial photos online, the building lives on:


1



2



3



4


If you were to head down there, this is today:


6



5
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Carolcb
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Username: Carolcb

Post Number: 4037
Registered: 11-2006
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 8:56 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Does anyone know about a foundling home that was in Dearborn in the 1950's? I was born in Trenton, and then sent to a "foundling home". I was there for a month. The doctor who delivered me in Trenton, was a woman named Dr. Kuckla. I know who my mother is but no one - no even the state of Michigan - no one was ever forced to list a father. And yes, I was adopted, and yes I have a mother and a father. But I think it is wrong to only know that your father was in the Navy and that he worked in a car dealership, and I don't get how you can give a child up in 1956 without listing who the father is.
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Rsa
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Username: Rsa

Post Number: 1428
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 9:23 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

a friend of mine works for an environmental remediation contractor in the city. about two years ago she was in charge of documenting a hospital that was going to be demolished in SW somewhere. i bet it's the same one. she sed everything was left inside, including furniture, lab equipment, fixtures, etc. almost like somebody just walked out the door one day to never come back. i'll check with her to see if i can get any photos...
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Rickinatlanta
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Username: Rickinatlanta

Post Number: 142
Registered: 07-2006
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 10:42 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Rsa,
That would be great if your friend could come up with some photos. It's odd how one's value of memories increases as we get older. All the time I lived in Detroit I don't think I ever gave a second thought to going into Booth Memorial. Now I'm valuing aerial photos of the building as it was being demolished 54 years later!
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Southwestmap
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Username: Southwestmap

Post Number: 968
Registered: 01-2005
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 10:51 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Scs: I drove past the William Booth Home for many years. Although it is gone, I can tell you that, in the 1950's it would have been a pretty nice place. The grounds had beautiful flowering trees and shrubs, the neighborhood was very nice and upscale and the Detroit River could certainly be viewed from many places. Just across the street was a nice apartment building and a beautiful slate-roofed house that can still be admired today.
I have no idea what rules the young, expectant mothers had to observe, but there was a park on the River, just steps away and I hope they were able to walk there.

The park is pretty rough now (as far as upkeep) but fishermen still fish there and the view is still very nice.
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Ruthie1
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Username: Ruthie1

Post Number: 13
Registered: 01-2008
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 11:08 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Rick - "It's odd how one's value of memories increases as we get older. All the time I lived in Detroit, I don't think I ever gave a second thought to going into Booth Memorial. Now I'm valuing aerial photos of the building as it was being demolished 54 years later!"

So true! I second that thought. It is amazing how even the slightest detail of your past becomes very valuable, and photos even more so.
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Homer
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Username: Homer

Post Number: 278
Registered: 08-2004
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 11:36 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I grew up just two blocks from Booth. In the early 60's I remember young pg women going for walks, always in pairs or small groups in the neighborhood. They would go to the corner store or gas station to buy snacks, or just enjoy a stroll in the sunshine.
Later in the early 80's a wonderful ex-nun, Frances Sivak headed a Montessori pre-school program housed there which our daughter attended. Sad to say the pre-school was not allowed to continue when the SA ended there lease.
The building and all surrounding land was later gobbled up by Manny Maroun.
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Scs_scooter
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Username: Scs_scooter

Post Number: 56
Registered: 07-2006
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 1:05 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

AIW, Thanks for the pics. I truly got chills looking at them. I have letters that my birth Mom wrote back home and she was a scared 17 year old that missed her little sister and dog. She told of the work they had to do. Cooking amd cleaning was top on the list. She said making donuts was a treat! They apparently cooked for the folks in the hospital including the other patients and employees. She wrote of how much she enjoyed the visits from a lady that had a military title in her name. It was Captain or something. Makes sense since it is a Salvation Army facility. They had a curfew and all longed for home. Her Mom would drive down from Port Huron (taking hours back then) and she would bring egg sandwiches that she "adored"!The letters that have come into my possession are priceless and gives me true insight into what happened back in February of 1958.
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Scs_scooter
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Username: Scs_scooter

Post Number: 57
Registered: 07-2006
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 1:12 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Rickinatlanta-I tried to email "Astrid" as well. No reply. Keep me posted if you hear back and I will do the same. Good to know you as well! Hugs from your birth-sister! Scooter
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Aiw
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Username: Aiw

Post Number: 6584
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 1:18 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

No problem, it's a shame that the building was demolished so recently, and that you didn't get a chance to see it in person.
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Jjaba
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Username: Jjaba

Post Number: 6190
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 2:42 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Nice work, AIW. jjaba has enjoyed this thread and happy to assist.

Scs, try picking up the telephone. Salvation Army hasn't gone away. They've got your records if you dig deep enough. You might have to make an appoitment with somebody where you live now, and they can assist you in the search. Agency records are kept for a long time.

Maybe you'll have to travel to the records office in Illinois if this be the case. Over time, the rewards will reward your efforts.

The civil rights and women's rights movements of the 1960s and 1970s has caused a change in the services required in this social work service.
Thus, there are choices like legal abortions, day-after pills, improved birth control practices, and more liberal at-home support and mentoring. Sexuality education prevents these crises also.

jjaba, in the shadow of the Ambassador Bridge.
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Scs_scooter
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Username: Scs_scooter

Post Number: 58
Registered: 07-2006
Posted on Friday, March 14, 2008 - 3:06 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Jjaba, Absolutely will try calling. I hate it when my 8 hour work life gets in the way of my personal life! No phone calls on the job!
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Jjaba
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Username: Jjaba

Post Number: 6192
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Saturday, March 15, 2008 - 1:46 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Scs, keep us informed about your search.

The Salvation Army has specialized in "three hots and cot" for over a century now. They're good people. They do well with these specialized housing programs, sheltering the down and out from the storms.

jjaba.
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Scs_scooter
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Username: Scs_scooter

Post Number: 59
Registered: 07-2006
Posted on Saturday, March 15, 2008 - 1:46 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I went down to where Wm Booth Hospital once stood and took some pics today. It was very hazy this morning so they are sort of washed out but nevertheless, I had my camera at the ready! The neighborhood is being torn up by the Ambassador Bridge upgrade. At one time I can only imagine how beautiful this area once was. There are still homes across the street and an apartment building that are still occupied. Down the street is the Detroit News and Riverside Park. The only thing left on the east side of the street is a pile of dirt and lots of construction iron.


WmBooth
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Scs_scooter
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Username: Scs_scooter

Post Number: 60
Registered: 07-2006
Posted on Saturday, March 15, 2008 - 2:12 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Here's the view across W.Grand Blvd.

WmBooth
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Neilr
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Username: Neilr

Post Number: 680
Registered: 06-2005
Posted on Saturday, March 15, 2008 - 4:11 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Should you find yourself in southwest Detroit some day with a few extra minutes, I recommend driving by WGB just south of Fort Street to see the house (on the right) in Scs_scooter's post #60. It is one of Detroit's smaller jewels. Do any DY posters know its history?
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Scs_scooter
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Username: Scs_scooter

Post Number: 61
Registered: 07-2006
Posted on Saturday, March 15, 2008 - 4:47 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

It's cute as all get-out but I don't know anything abt it. Do tell Neilr!
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Neilr
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Username: Neilr

Post Number: 681
Registered: 06-2005
Posted on Saturday, March 15, 2008 - 5:33 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I don't know its story. I'm here to learn. As the saying goes, "When the student is ready, the teacher will appear."

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