Washington County Home For Men
In 1830, 170 acres were purchased by the County of Washington and a building was erected for the purpose of providing an institution for the employment and support of the poor. Later, additional portions of land were added to the farm until it totaled 209 acres. The land was farmed with wheat, oats, corn, potatoes, hay, and live-stock.
Although a building was erected in 1831, the final men's home was not finished until 1874. This building contained about 97 rooms. Additions were added in 1922, 1927, and 1929, with many other buildings for carpentry, bridges, a garage, and numerous sheds. Over the years, the buildings underwent many changes (gas to electric lighting, spring and well water to city water, outdoor plumbing to indoor bathrooms, etc.)
Housing Staff & Orphans
In addition to the men that lived at the home acting as laborers, the county employed a farmer, engineer, baker, hospital nurse, cook, and two matrons. Orphaned children were allowed to live in this facility until 1883 when the state passed a law forbidding the retention of children between the ages of two and 16, in the "poor house for more than 60 days".
Washington County Women & Children's Home
On September 19, 1884, property on the Chartiers Valley Railroad was purchased to develop a home for the homeless and orphaned children of the county. A home was built, but on February 12, 1889 it was destroyed by fire. Almost 75 children were in the building at the time, but there was no loss of life.
A new home for children was opened on March 26, 1907. It contained 52 rooms, including a schoolroom for the primary grades. The age of the children residing at the home ranged from 2 to 16 and in 1908 there were 109 children living there.
The Health Care Facility
In 1951, the building was converted from an Orphanage to a health care facility for aged women and the children with them. Thus, the Washington County Women and Children's Home was established.
Due to the many changes in nursing home regulations and the fact that the homes had no sprinkling systems, it was evident that a new structure was needed to accommodate the residents of the two buildings.