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National Register of Historic Places Inventory Nomination Form - page 5 / 22

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8.

Significance

Statement of Significance (in one paragraph)

Considered by many to be the most tangible achievement of St.

Louis'

black com

munity, Homer G. that community.

Phillips Hospital has also become the most widely known symbol for Constructed between 1932 and 1936 as one of the few, fully equipped

hospitals training,

in the country where black doctors, nurses and technicians could the influence of Homer 6. Phillips spread throughout the nation.

receive Locally,

the presence of Homer 6. Phillips not only provided medical services to but along with Sumner High School, Antioch Baptist Church and the Annie Children's Home formed a closely related network of stability and pride years of restrictive covenants in housing and segregation in education.

the community Malone during the

In St. 7:00,

Louis on June 18, 1931, a 51-year-old lawyer rose at had breakfast, said good-bye to his wife, and left his

home at 1121 Aubert Avenue.

Noted for his punctuality,

he

walked southward streetcar to his

on Aubert office at

to 23

Delmar at 7:45 a.m. North Jefferson.

to

take

a

He stopped to buy a newspaper. car and read his paper, two men

As he waited approached.

for The

his street first walked

up and said something to The first man struck him

him.

in

the

The lawyer lowered his

face

and

then

drew

an

paper. auto

matic, firing several shots into him. two men ran north to an alley and east

The lawyer fell, in the alleyJ

and the

Although two people were arrested for the murder of Homer Gilliam

Phillips,

both were

released.

This yet-unsolved tragedy prevented the man most responsible for the

successful outcome of decades training for St. Louis' black

of struggle citizens to

for see

adequate health care and medical construction begin on the facility

which was to bear his name. 2

In the early twentieth century,

black St.

Louisans became increasingly vocal

about the lack of adequate health care or medical

training.

Taxes from black citizens

supported in policy

municipal facilities open whereby blacks and whites

only to whites.

could

train

in

Attempts to promote

the

same

institutions

a change were met

by

threats of strikes by white doctors.

In 1914,

a committee of seventeen concerned

black

physicians

convinced

city

officials

to

purchase

the

abandoned

Barnes

Medical

College at Garrison and renovated and opened as

Lawton Avenues. a 177-bed health

Renamed City Hospital #2, care center for blacks in

the facility 1919.

was

The 1920 population in apparent that

U.

one 177

S.

Census reported a sixty percent increase in St.

Louis'

black

decade.

Only two years after City Hospital

#2 opened,

it became

beds

could

not

serve

the

needs

of

seventy

thousand

people.

The

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