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[graphic] Brown Hospital
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Brown Hospital, shortly before restoration, 1998
Courtesy of Lorraine Draper

Pipestone's first hospital was located in this one and a half story 25 by 50-foot Sioux quartzite building. Constructed in 1912, the Brown Hospital is the only historic property related to the community's medical history. The building also has the distinction of being the only example in the historic district of a Sioux quartzite building that incorporates in its principle gable wooden overlays, clapboard, and scalloped shingle siding. The windows are recessed in the arch which overhangs the front porch. The roof still retains its original pressed metal roofing.The main floor contained offices for two doctors, a waiting room, dispensary and surgery room. The elevator to the four-room hospital on the second floor was unique in that it was large enough for a patient's bed.

[photo] Historic image of Brown Hospital, 1913
Courtesy of Pipestone County Historical Society
Dr. Alex H. Brown practiced medicine here until he retired in 1945. A few years later, the practice was taken over by his grandson, Dr. Robert Keyes, who retired in 1993. In the early years, the basement housed a shoe store run by Dr. Brown's cousin, followed by other small businesses. Upon Dr. Keyes' retirement, the building and much of its contents were given to the Pipestone County Historical Society. In January 1997, Historic Pipestone, Inc., a non-profit group dedicated to historic preservation, purchased the building. The group is in the process of restoring the exterior to its 1912 appearance. The interior remains much the same today except for the removal of the elevator.

Brown Hospital is located at 116 2nd Ave., SW, Pipestone and is open by appointment. It is open the first Saturday of every month for a used book sale, or call 507-825-3413 to schedule an appointment.



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