Frances Archer is compiling a history of the MTS on this blog. Her interests include the planning process, architecture and landscape, and recollections of the medical and administrative staff. She is gathering oral histories from former patients and their families about their experiences at the MTS. She’s also looking for photographs taken at the MTS.
Frances began writing about the Municipal Tuberculosis Sanitarium on another blog, Me & My Shadow: A Life in Chicago. To avoid republishing the same information on this website, she is including a link to a page on that blog listing all the articles related to the MTS: Remembering the Municipal Tuberculosis Sanitarium. Of particular interest are the comments left by readers who had family members treated at MTS.
Tours and talks available
In early 2012, I started giving tours of the grounds to share the history of former Municipal Tuberculosis Sanitarium and its place in Chicago history. The tours are sponsored by the North Park Village Nature Center and offered about twice a year. I also offer private talks with and without slideshows to groups.
Here’s a testimonial from one speaking engagement:
“Many thanks to Frances O’Cherony Archer for her program about the Municipal Tuberculosis Sanitarium–a fascinating story about a holistic and nurturing model of healthcare that, unfortunately, no longer exists. I had a personal interest in the story since my grandfather used to work there as a physician. We had great attendance at the program, including some visitors who are now living in condominiums for older adults on the grounds as well as one woman who was an actual resident. Frances’s presentation was truly engaging and lively and extremely well received by our audience. The story is a very important one in both the history of Chicago and the history of healthcare.”
— Chuck Freilich
Director of Repriorment and Lifelong Engagement, Mather Lifeways
Frances dedicates this blog to the memory of her father, Dr. Domingo O’Cherony and his lifelong devotion to providing health care to children whose families could not afford it. He was a pediatrician for 10 years in his native Cuba and for 40 years in Chicago.
Dr. O’Cherony’s first medical office in Chicago was located on the second floor of a now-demolished building on North Avenue near Sedgwick. Following his Spanish-speaking patients northward, he relocated to 3355 N. Clark, to another now demolished building, in the mid-1960s. As one of the early Spanish-speaking doctors on the North Side, he often saw more than 50 patients a day, many coming from a great distance for the opportunity to speak in their native language about their children’s health issues. He was affiliated with Grant, Augustana and Children’s Memorial hospitals during his years of practice in Chicago.
Starting in the seventies, Dr. O’Cherony served as medical director of the Lower West Side Neighborhood Health Center and later in the same position at the West Town Neighborhood Health Center. It was dream come true for him to have the opportunity to work in a Chicago public health clinic, as it brought him full circle to his first days as a doctor in Cuba, where he had served in a free health clinic every Sunday in his native town of Consolacion del Sur.