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Dimock Community Health Center (New England Hospital for Women and Children)

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New England Hospital for Women and Children
1872, Cummings and Sears. 55 Dimock St.
  • Dimock Community Health Center (New England Hospital for Women and Children) (Peter Vanderwarker or Antonina Smith)

At the New England Hospital for Women and Children, women doctors ran a hospital for the first time in New England and the second in the country. Cummings and Sears designed the two earliest structures, Cary Cottage and the Zakrzewska Building. A Stick Style building with a mansard roof, ornate ventilator, and stickwork porch, Cary Cottage was built as a maternity facility where women could be isolated in more sanitary conditions than were available in the typical wards of the period. Adjacent stands the original main building for the hospital, named in honor of Dr. Marie E. Zakrzewska, who founded the institution. Its picturesque treatment also features Stick Style elements as well as polychromatic brickwork. Both buildings reflect the prevailing theories of hospital design, emphasizing domestic scale and character and spacious verandahs for fresh air and sunlight. The two original buildings, symbols of the role of architecture in a patient's recovery, remain remarkably intact.

The complex includes later buildings added during the most important period of expansion in the years prior to 1920, the largest being the Edna B. Cheney Surgical Building, designed in a Georgian Revival style by Willard T. Sears in 1899. The hospital closed in 1969 and became the Dimock Community Health Center.

Writing Credits

Keith N. Morgan


What's Nearby


Keith N. Morgan, "Dimock Community Health Center (New England Hospital for Women and Children)", [Boston, Massachusetts], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Massachusetts

Buildings of Massachusetts: Metropolitan Boston, Keith N. Morgan, with Richard M. Candee, Naomi Miller, Roger G. Reed, and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2009, 251-252.

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