Neonatology on the Web

White City Park, Cleveland, Ohio, 1905-1908

White City Park, Cleveland, Ohio, 1905-1908

White City Park and Luna Park competed with the highly successful Euclid Beach Park in the early 1900s. White City Park opened in 1905. It was owned by Ed Boyce, who also owned Dreamland Park on Coney Island, and adopted many of its concepts. However, unlike Euclid Beach Park, it charged an admission fee, and after a serious fire in 1906 and damage from a windstorm in 1907, it closed in 1908. I have not found any pictures of the incubator pavilion as yet, but it was known to have been yet another effort of Martin Couney & Co.

“The Park was built in eleven weeks and featured a boardwalk, Shoot the Chutes, the Bostock Animal Show, Bump-the-Bumps, a scenic railway, and a midway which featured Drs. Couney and Stewart’s infant incubator hospital. About 20 premature babies, referred by Cleveland area physicians, were under care and on display as the best and most promising hope for infant survival. The first ‘resident’ arrived in June 1905 in time for the Park’s opening. The hospital gained local notoriety with full capacity and subsequent reunion celebrations in years to come.” — Cleveland Historical Society

Along with the rides and food concessions, White City offered a number of unique attractions which included Drs. Couney and Stewarts Infant Incubator Hospital. Park visitors could visit the state of the art facility and see up to twenty premature babies on display with their attending Cleveland physicians. By today’s standards this would surely be viewed as a rather odd form of entertainment for an amusement park, but it did provide a much needed public service. Facilities such as this were not common place and the care provided saved lives. The hospital’s first patient and star performer arrived just in time for opening day in June 1905 and the hospital operated at almost full capacity the few short years the park operated. — Case Western Reserve Historical Society

White City Incubators in the Press

Source: The Times Democrat, Cleveland, July 7, 1905.

Last Updated on 04/30/23