Mercy Hospital: the "Beacon of Light"

Mercy Hospital 1913

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In 1910, the Sisters of Mercy arrived in Bakersfield to establish Mercy Hospital in a donated house located on 14th & H Streets. By 1912, the 14 rooms and 24 beds were no longer adequate to meet the needs of the growing Bakersfield community.

On November 9, 1913, Mercy Hospital opened its doors on Truxtun Avenue, where it remains today thanks to the generous support of the community. The three story building was considered to be the most advanced hospital of its day, with the city’s first passenger elevator and electrical light signal over each patient doorway.

A massive 70 foot dome topped the building with a gold leaf cross at its apex illuminated by a lantern. The hospital was known as the “beacon of light” with the cross being visible for a distance of 10 miles around the city.

Now, 111 years later, Mercy Hospitals continues to be a beacon of light in our community, and are once again ready to meet the growing needs of our community. Our expanded Mercy Southwest campus will include the first cardiac catheterization lab west of Highway 99, providing a critical need in our county. We will be the first hospital to have private family suites for the tiniest babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. We will continue our commitment to oncology with the only inpatient cancer unit in Kern County. This is the shared legacy and the future of our community and Mercy Hospitals.

Although days have been dark during these unprecedented times, Mercy Hospitals remains steadfast in our mission to ensure every person in our community has access to state of the art care, delivered with compassion and love.

Please consider making a gift to Mercy Hospitals as we broaden our services to meet the growing needs of our community. Join others as we stand on the shoulders of the ones who came before us, knowing Mercy Hospital will continue to be the light in darkness for generations to come.

May God bless you, your family, and all who came before you.

Click here to support the future of Mercy Hospital