Historic Markers Across Georgia

Wise Sanitarium 1921 ~ 1936

Marker ID: Plains Historical Preservation Trust 
Location: Hospital Street in Plains, GA
County: Sumter
Coordinates: N 32° 2.269    W 084° 23.433
  32.03781666    -84.39055
Style: Free Standing **
Waymark: None
Wise Sanitarium 1921 ~ 1936 Marker
Photo by David Seibert


Built in 1921 by Drs. Samuel, Thaddeus, and Bowman Wise, sons of Dr. Burr T. and Laura Addt Wise, early settlers of Plains, this innovative hospital was known as "the Mayo Clinic of the South". Originally opened above Plains Pharmacy in 1912 with its 15 beds, it moved to the second floor of the A. C. Wellons building on Main Street in 1917 with 20 beds. In 1921, this building was built with 60 beds, an operating room, and an x-ray room with radium treatment capabilities. Black patients were treated in a separate building in the rear of the main building. It was one of the first small hospitals in the state to be accredited by the American College of Surgeons and the American Medical and Hospital Association and also served as an accredited training school for nurses. It was here that Lillian Gordy Carter received her nurse training. Jimmy Carter, son of Earl and Lillian Carter, was born here on October 1, 1924. He was the first president of the United States to be bored in a hospital.

On January 21, 1936 a fire damaged this building. Dr. Sam and Dr. Thad relocated their practice to Americas and Dr. Bowman opened an office in Plains.

Marker funded by Plains Historical Preservation Trust

Wise Sanitarium 1921 ~ 1936
Photo by David Seibert