history

Nantucket Cottage Hospital was founded in 1911, conceived by the visions of Dr. John S. Grouard and Dr. Benjamin Sharp.

Dr. Grouard referred to the isolated island life in 1911 when he said:

Increasingly higher value placed on human life is an indication of higher civilization. To conserve human life on this isolated island, it is imperative that the conditions under which medicine and surgery are practiced must be superseded by more modern ones.

In 1912, Dr. Sharp spoke of his search for a sturdy structure to transform into Nantucket's first hospital:

Our hope, and longings, are for the hospital. But no house turned up in the accessible parts of town which did not have a next-door neighbor who objected.

Despite objecting neighbors and other obstacles, Dr. Sharp and his colleagues persevered, and in December 1912, the Hospital Endowment Committee purchased the old Charles Este homestead on West Chester Street for $6,000.

Nantucket Cottage Hospital was born.

The original small Cottage Hospital on West Chester Street grew apace with the island community's needs. In 1957, the Hospital opened new facilities at its current site, 57 Prospect Street. In the 1960s, when that building was deemed too small, a wing was added to accommodate the growing need for comprehensive medical care.


Over and again, the island community has recognized the need for a modern health care facility offering state-of-the-art medical care in every season. Through the years, the entire community, seasonal and year-round, has worked together to meet the healthcare needs of our island, whether through financial or in-kind gifts. For at least 50 years, members of the community have worked together as volunteers on the Hospital board and committees. In the ‘50s, the Pink Ladies volunteered at the Hospital, as the Blue Coats do today. Volunteers also helped to organize the Main Street Fetes through the early 1900s to raise money for the Hospital, and today, much of our community is involved in the Hospital Thrift Shop and such annual events as Pops on Nantucket concerts, the Health Fair, Native Reunion, and the Swing for Nantucket Cottage Hospital golf tournament.

While the entire community works together to take care of one another, the Hospital continues to respond to the needs of our community by offering year-round quality health care for every individual who steps on this island.

Our Centennial History

 
Nantucket in the early 1900s.
Nantucket in the early 1900s.
NCH History
The original hospital on West Chester Street.
Nantucket Cottage Hospital today.
The Prospect St. hospital complex today.
 
Nantucket Cottage Hospital is an affiliate of Massachusetts General Hospital and a member of Partners HealthCare.