The History of St. Vincent's Southside
St. Vincent’s Medical Center Southside was formed in 1873 as St. Luke’s Hospital by three women who saw a need for medical care in the community. It is the oldest private hospital in Florida.
Susan Hartridge, Myra H. Mitchell and Anna Doggett rented a one-story farmhouse with two rooms in a marshy area near Hogan’s Creek and opened it to the community during the busy tourist season from October through April.
As the months passed, the need grew for a larger hospital. In 1876, a new building was completed, but was destroyed by a fire before it opened. Despite the great loss, the founders and supporters began again with a renewed sense of determination. Two years later, a new building was construction on Palmetto Street in downtown Jacksonville. This facility, which survived the Great Fire of 1901, served St. Luke’s and Jacksonville for 28 years. St. Luke’s moved two more times over the years, in 1914 and in 1984, expanding to meet the growing needs of the community.
Embracing the Future
In 1987, St. Luke’s Hospital, now located on Jacksonville’s Southside, became a Mayo Clinic hospital. In 2005, St. Luke’s became part of the St. Vincent’s HealthCare family, but Mayo Clinic retained operational control. In 2008, St. Vincent’s assumed control of hospital operations and in January 2012, St. Luke’s Hospital became St. Vincent’s Medical Center Southside.