Sickel General Hospital

Sickel General Hospital, a large complex covering a city block, was built for the Second Division. Buildings are described and illustrated on the quartermaster map.

Page updated on Mar 8, 2020 at 2:08 PM
Sickel Hospital Image 1: Bird’s-eye view of Sickel Hospital, looking toward Fairfax Seminary, January 5, 1865, by Andrew Russell. Library of Congress.
Sickel Hospital (image 2) Image 2: Bird’s-eye view of Sickel Hospital, Alexandria, Virginia, by Andrew Russell.  Library of Congress.
Sickel Hospital, Quartermaster Map (elevation) Quartermaster map showing elevations of the hospital buildings.
Sickel Hospital, Quartermaster Map Quartermaster map showing plan of the hospital buildings.
Sickel Hospital, Quartermaster Map (key) Key identifying hospital buildings on the Quartermaster plan of the hospital buildings.
Sickel General Hospital Today Townhouses from the mid-20th century are now on this site, near the Braddock Road Metro Station.
Civil War Hospitals Map: Sickel

History of Sickel General Hospital

Block bounded by Pendleton, Oronoco, North Payne and North West Streets

The hospital was built for the Second Division. Text on the Quartermaster Map indicates that the hospital was built by Col. Sickel in 1863, and occupied by Surgeon T. Ruels Spenser in 1864.The hospital complex included approximately 24 wood frame structures, ward tents, surgeon’s headquarters, 13 wooden wards, sutler’s building, wash house, dead house,  and two sinks (privies). After the War, some of the building materials were said to have been given to the Freedmen’s Bureau to build schools.


First Person Accounts

Historic Images

Image 1:

Image 2:

 

Quartermaster Map

Quartermaster maps show elevations and plans of the hospital buildings, with a key.

Transcription of the Key to Hospital Buildings

A  Surgeons Head Quarters 24’x92’, two stories. Siding vertical & battened, Ceilings & walls sheathed with dressed lumber. 
a’s  Ward Tents  

Mess House 20’4”x87’7”.  Two stories high.  Siding horizontal.     
bbbb  Plank Walks  

Kitchen 20’4”x77’, one story. Siding horizontal.   
c’s  Covered Walks 6’ wide.  

General Store House and fuel shed 20’4”x60’ two stories high with stairs outside. Siding vertical and battened.   
Veranda  

E’s  Thirteen Wards 20’x60’4”, one story.    Siding horizontal.
enclosed passage between Mess House & Kitchen 10’8”x 10’3’  

Dead House 16’5”x20’5”, Roof ventilated, Siding horizontal and lapped.  
(Apparently a veranda on G but  not identified in the key)

G  Sanitary building 20’5”x50’4”, and constructed in the usual manner.   
ggggg  Watch boxes 3’6”x3’6”  

H  Sutlers House 16’5”x20’5”, Roof ventilated, Siding horizontal and lapped.  
hh  Porches 5’2” x 8’6” for wash house (not marked on map)

I  Wash  House 32’x100’, two stories, clothes yard on roof
i  Veranda for wash house (not marked on map)

Barracks for two companies, 24’6”x128’, two stories. 

K  Sink 15’x25’
k  Sink 8’ x 15’

I's  Grass plots enclosed

m  A portion of Ward

n  Knapsack room – both 20’x60’4”

O  Hydrant (between Mess House and Ward Tents)

P  Porch and stairs to roof of wash house

q  Flag staff (in front of Surgeon’s Headquarters)
 
Note from the text below the legend:
 
Blue lines government fences

All of these buildings are covered with Felt, except the Barracks, which is covered with Shingle, and all in a fair state of repair.

See Elevations, Sections &c. of these building on plans Nos. 1 & 2, Va.


Note from the center of the plan:

The most of these buildings were erected in 1863 by Col. Sickel, the 8th Penn. Reserves, & occupied by Surgeon T. Rush Spencer, as Hospital, in 1864 who added thereto the Wash-house, Sanitary, general store and officers Mess Houses as also a dead house

Location and the Site Today


The site is on the block bounded by Pendleton, Oronoco, North Payne and North West Streets. Townhouses from the mid-20th century are now on this site, near the Braddock Road Metro Station.

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