Caroline M. Watson
The widow of Don Alonzo Watson, Caroline Manning Watson was born on May 2, 1826.
She was elected as the Hospital’s Board of Supervisors first Vice-President in 1889. In the early years of the hospital she devoted herself to the hospital’s success by not only her generous financial support but in the day to day work of the hospital.
In 1893 she donated $5,000 towards the purchase of the hospital’s property on Monroe Avenue and a year later she assumed the entire expense of the construction of the wing which contained both male and female wards that would come to be named the Watson Pavilion.
In 1895, she had sponsored the construction of the Watson Surgical Pavilion and Hollister Ward, consisting of eleven private rooms and endowed in perpetuity a free bed in the male ward. Two years later, in 1897, a second Surgical Pavilion was constructed and supplied with the latest in surgical equipment.
The tribute paid to her by the hospital Board of Governors on the occasion of her death on December 19, 1900 proclaimed her greatest gift to the hospital was her wise and benevolent spirit:
Thus has closed a life richly dowered with God’s best gifts, which she lavished with generous hand upon every worthy cause. This hospital is especially indebted to her munificence. [Philanthropic generosity] From its inception she has devoted to it much of her time and strength, and has given most liberally for its maintenance and development. We reverently spread upon our records this tribute to a noble life nobly consecrated.
William A. Hubbard, Secretary