On the latest episode of American Horror Story NYC it’s been reveled that BOTH Hannah and Mr. Whitely work at the now demolished Saint Vincent’s Hospital in NYC. Despite being a Catholic hospital it would become the front line battlefield during the AIDS epidemic. This is an important part of our history and St. Vincent’s Hospital should never be forgotten.
Saint Vincent Catholic Medical Centers or just, “St. Vinny’s” as the locals called it was located on 12th and 13th Street and 7th/Greenwich Avenue in NYC. At one time St. Vincent’s was the 3rd oldest hospital in New York City after The New York Hospital and Bellevue Hospital. It was founded as a medical facility in 1849; and named for St. Vincent de Paul. The hospital was started by the Sisters of Charity by St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, who went to New York City to set up a charity hospital in the city to meet the demands of the poor and disadvantaged.
St. Vincent’s served the poor as one of the few charity hospitals in New York City and admitted patients regardless of religion or ability to pay. For more than 150 years St. Vincent’s was a beacon in Greenwich Village, serving poets, writers, artists, and the poor and the working-class. It treated victims of the cholera epidemic of 1849, to the Hudson River landing of US Airways Flight 1549.
St. Vincent’s Hospital never strayed from its core mission to provide care with respect, compassion and dignity for the poor and displaced members of society and in 1981 when a mysterious disease began affecting gay men in New York City St Vincent’s stood strong to their mission. While many other hospitals turned patients away St. Vincent’s took them in and treated and diagnosed some of the first known cases of what would eventually become known as AIDS.
Continue reading The Ghosts of Saint Vincent’s Hospital: Ground Zero For New York City’s AIDS Epidemic