Date of Award:
Master of Science (MS)
David R Lewis
David Rich Lewis
Bushnell General Military Hospital was an Army World War II hospital in Brigham City, Utah from August 1942 to June 1946. It specialized in treating amputations, maxillofacial surgery, neuropsychiatric conditions, and tropical diseases. It was also one of the first hospitals to experimentally use penicillin. Bushnell was a regional facility for wounded solders from the Mountain States that provided quality medical care to patients. The community of Brigham City and the citizens of other Northern Utah communities were an integral part of the success of Bushnell. Citizens donated time, supplies, and money to support the facility and to assist in the care and rehabilitation of injured GIs. Celebrities also visited Bushnell to promote morale, and some disabled Americans assisted injured patients. The hospital staff, along with Northern Utahns, played an important role in helping to rehabilitate and reintroduce injured soldiers into society.
Brigham City was also effected by Bushnell Hospital. One major problem was a shortage of housing in Brigham City, which led citizens to rent to family members of patients in private homes. Another was infrastructure needed to support the hospital. However, the benefits mostly outweighed the problems. The city and surrounding communities benefited from the job growth at Bushnell and in Brigham. Downtown businesses received additional revenue from patrons. Because the hospital came to Brigham City, some citizens also met Japanese Americans and German and Italian POWs in addition to those connected to Bushnell. This led Brigham citizens to develop friendships with people they might have not met otherwise. When the war ended, the subsequent closure of Bushnell General Military Hospital brought these benefits to an end, and Brigham City and other Northern Utahn communities hastened to find a new occupant for the hospital facility to ensure jobs. In 1950, it became the Intermountain Indian School. The school closed in 1984, and now businesses and homes occupy the site.
Carter, Andrea Kaye, "Bushnell General Military Hospital and the Community of Brigham City, Utah During World War II" (2008). All Graduate Theses and Dissertations, Spring 1920 to Summer 2023. 162.
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