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UChicago Medicine Ingalls Memorial Celebrates 100 years of care.

With tremendous gratitude, we thank all of the exceptional and dedicated health professionals and community members who have worked — every day for a century — to help the residents of Chicago and Chicago Southland to thrive. 


UChicago Medicine Ingalls Memorial marked its 100th anniversary at a ceremony on November 6, 2023 that included the opening of a time capsule sealed 35 years ago.

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  • 1920s
  • 1930s
  • 1940s
  • 1950s
  • 1960s
  • 1970s
  • 1980s
  • 1990s
  • 2000s
  • 2010s
  • 2020s
  • 1920-1929

    1920s Frederick Ingalls and his wife Jeanette Hess Ingalls saw the need in Harvey for a more sophisticated medical facility. The Ingalls family donated acreage in the vicinity of 155th and Page Avenue for a planned 50-bed hospital.

    1923 The Hospital opens and is dedicated to Jeannette Ingalls as Ingalls Memorial Hospital. On November 4, 1923, The Hospital admits its first patient, Miss Ella Koehn.

    1924 Frederick Ingalls serve as President and Chairman of the Board. Jean Ingalls Havens is Vice President. The Jeannette Hess Ingalls School of Nursing opens.

  • 1930-1939

    1930 Ingalls expands as a new wing is built and Dr. Helen Hayden opens the Child’s Health Center, which provides free care to women and children.

Hospital funds are frozen as the Greater Depression hits Ingalls; Frederick pays $11,000 in payroll out of his personal account. In the face of tremendous financial hardship, the Board of trustees votes to close Ingalls Memorial Hospital. The Hospital survives because Jean Ingalls Havens and Hospital employees make great sacrifices.

    1934 After a decade of training for Ingalls and beyond, the Jeannette Hess Ingalls School of Nursing closes.

  • 1940-1949

    1945 Ingalls becomes a community responsibility and the Board of Trustees is reorganized. John Bardwick, Jr. is appointed Chairman of the Board of Trustees.

    1947 Health Insurance grains popularity. The Blue Cross Commission is established, creating a national doctors network.

    1948 Ingalls flourishes in the post-war years, beds double, patients triple, and plans are made for furthers expansion. The Hospital celebrates its 25th anniversary. Lester C. Mortrud is appointed Administrator.

  • 1950-1959

    1950 Ingalls continues improvements as Dr. M. Robert Weidner Jr. establishes the blood bank through a donation in memory of his father, Dr. M.R. Weidner Sr. Blood can be stored for future.

    1955 Under considerable pressure from overcrowding, Ingalls begins expansion plans and receives a $67,800 grant from the Ford Foundation to build new facilities.

    1957 Construction begins on the four- story North Wing, costing $3 million, and doubling the size of the Hospital.

  • 1960-1969

    1960 Wilson Greatbatch’s invention, the implantable cardiac pacemaker that regulates the heart's rhythm, is first used in humans. Millions of lives are saved.

    1965 Medicare and Medicaid programs are signed into law as landmark amendments to the Social Security Act. Health care is provided to the elderly, low-income children and their caretakers, and the disabled.

    1967 Ingalls establishes its Intensive Coronary Care Unit, this is one of the first 250 in the U.S.; Lester C. Montrude retires and Robert L. Harris becomes Administrator.

  • 1970-1979

    1970 The Women’s Auxiliary celebrates its 20th Anniversary. Ingalls introduces the first artificial kidney dialysis unit in the South Suburbs.

    1972 The new North Building is completed, housing the Intermediate Care Facility.

    1973 Ingalls celebrates its 50th anniversary by hosting “A Night at the Races,” a large benefit which raised $10,000 and began the tradition of annual fundraising events.

    1977 The Professional Office Building opens.

  • 1980-1989

    1982 - 1985 Wyman Gordon Pavilion opens offering psychiatry and substances abuse services. The Tinley Park Family and Calumet City Family Care Centers open.

    1986 Richard and Marie Irwin donate $1.5 million to create the Irwin Heart Center.

    1987 The State of Illinois names Ingalls the resource hospital for South Cook County Emergency Medical Services (EMS). Ingalls serves as anchor for 7 hospitals.

    1988 The Ingalls Irwin heart Center begins offering open-heart surgery.

  • 1990-1999

    1990 The Ingalls Cancer Care Center Opens. The Peruvian American Medical Society honors Robert L. Harris on behalf of Ingalls’ donations and commitment to improving healthcare in Cusco, Peru.

    1994 Charles Waterman is elected Chairman of the Board. The Ingalls Skilled Nursing Facility opens.

    1997 Health Directions, Inc., Ingalls’ national consulting business, is sold. Medcentrix, Inc. becomes Ingalls management services organization.

  • 2000-2009

    2000 Robert L. Harris retired and Kurt Johnson is named president and CEO.

    2000 Ingalls is recognized by Healthgrades as one of the “100 Top Hospitals in Cardiovascular Care” in the United States. The Hospital wins’ quality awards nearly every year since.

    2005 The Flossmoor Family Care Center opens.

  • 2010-2019

    2012 Infusion Center first in area administered High tech Prostate Cancer Drug. Fords Pre-employment physicals meant record occupational health visits.

    2013 More than 225 volunteers, physicians and staff served at Ingalls 30th Annual Health Fair. It was sponsored by Ingalls and Homewood Rotary Club.

    2015 Ingalls historical timeline is dedicated in Robert L. Harris Lobby.

    2016 Ingalls Memorial Hospital merges into UChicago Health System.

  • 2020-Now

    2020 UChicago Medicine Ingalls Memorial Hospital creates its first 14-member community advisory council (CAC). Ingalls Memorial administered approximately 43,000 COVID-19 tests to UChicago Medicine Ingalls employees and the public.

    2021 The first complimentary Nutrition Station is established in Tinley Park Family Care center to support oncology infusion patients.

    2023 Ingalls employees volunteer for the inaugural Day of Service and Reflection to serving the Southland Community.


And the winner is…

Patricia A.

“I was 19 with a small child to care for. With my mom’s urging, I decided to go to nursing school. Before I was accepted to school, I thought I should get some hospital experience. I applied to be a nursing assistant. Ingalls called that they had a housekeeping job. I was so disappointed, but decided to take it anyway. I went in to accept the position and during the conversation with the person in HR, I told her my plans for nursing school. She said, “well, let’s see if I can find you something better suited to your plans.”
That one thing changed my life. She found me a Medical Assistant position in Labor and Delivery and the Nursery. That was it for me. I was hooked, I had found my calling. I not only became a Nurse, I went on to get my Masters and my degree as a Certified Nurse Midwife. I would work in the field of Woman’s Healthcare for over 30 years. All because of that one person in HR who decided to go the extra mile. Thank you Ingalls!”

And the winner is…

Erika J.

Erika was born at Ingalls Hospital in the 1990s, and her five children were also born at Ingalls Hospital. We are so grateful to Erika for her strong connection to the history of UChicago Medicine Ingalls Memorial Hospital!

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