Our History - All Saints Hospital - Ascension Wisconsin

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Our History

Throughout history, health care in Racine has demonstrated an unwavering dedication to meeting the needs of the community. Take a moment to learn more about Racine's health care legacy, which was started by two local hospitals more than a century ago.

Wheaton Franciscan Sisters

In 1872, the first Franciscan Sisters arrived in the U.S. from Germany. Their lives as they knew them were destined for change. Sent by Mother Mary Clara Pfaender, founder of their congregation, they found themselves in a strange and foreign land ready to take on the management of a hospital near St. Louis. There they provided much-needed health care for the sick, the poor and the marginalized. In 1882, the need for their services brought them to Racine where they opened St. Mary’s Hospital.

St. Mary’s Hospital, Racine

The Franciscan Sisters rounded up 10 beds and converted the old Blake House on Campbell and 16th Streets into St. Mary's Hospital. The Sisters replaced the original 10-bed facility with a brick building in 1889. Over the next quarter-century, they expanded the structure and acquired the surrounding land. By the 1960s, the hospital was in need of significant updates to meet the needs of the growing community. In 1977, the new St. Mary's Medical Center was opened on Spring Street and has grown into a sprawling campus.

St. Luke’s Memorial Hospital, Racine

More than 135 years ago, members of the Episcopal Church also saw a need in Racine for a hospital. They formed St. Luke's Hospital in 1872, and operated in a leased facility until 1876, when the hospital trustees were able to erect their own building. In the first half of the 20th century, many additions were made to this building, and in 1952, the expanded hospital was renamed St. Luke's Memorial Hospital.

All Saints Healthcare

With a dedication to serve and a vision that was ahead of its time, the sponsors, hospitals and community leaders recognized that they needed to come together to fulfill a shared purpose for future generations. St. Luke's Memorial Hospital and St. Mary's Hospital officially affiliated under the same parent corporation in 1991 to form All Saints Healthcare. All Saints Medical Group began in 1994 with the consolidation of the Racine and Kurten Medical Groups into All Saints Healthcare.

Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare – All Saints

In July 2006, ever striving to fulfill their Mission and meet the changing needs of the times, the Wheaton Franciscan Sisters' corporate entity, Wheaton Franciscan Services, brought together its two Wisconsin regions – Covenant Healthcare and All Saints Healthcare – to be known commonly throughout Southeast Wisconsin as Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare and Wheaton Franciscan Medical Group.

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