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History of APD

Alice Peck Day, Dr Burnham, and the Early Days

Alice Peck Day, who was born and raised in APD's Homestead Building, bequeathed her family home to found a cottage hospital in 1927. Dr. Arthur Burnham, one of the area's leading physicians at the time, helped lead the drive for incorporation, and on February 1, 1932, APD opened its doors for the first time.

Early traditions at APD included “Donation Day,” when Lebanon residents contributed food, bathrobes, towels and other needed goods, and “Baby Day,” where babies born at the hospital gathered with their families for a social get-together. The early hospital specialized in births, minor medical procedures and tonsillectomies—the only surgery then performed at APD.

Complete APD Timeline

Building the New Hospital

The hospital thrived for many years in the Homestead Building, but by the 1960s safety and space issues made a new facility necessary. Dr. Burnham once again came to the hospital's assistance, leading a fund drivethat raised the $880,000 necessary to build a new hospital. The Homestead Building was converted to a long-term care facility.

In 1976, APD expanded again, moving the long-term care facility to its current place in the main hospital building.

Changing with the Times and Keeping Current

Declining federal reimbursements and the retirement of two important physicians led to financial difficulty in the 1980s. APD joined the early Hitchcock Alliance and built the APD-Dartmouth Family Practice Center, later the Robert A. Mesropian Center for Community Care. The recruitment of Dr. Kroner and orthopedic surgeon Dr. Leonard Rudolf allowed the hospital to become profitable once more, and in 1987—with the help of visionary President and CEO Robert A. Mesropian—APD regained its fiscal independence.

APD continued to expand in the 1990s and 2000s, adding physicians' offices, the Immediate Care Center, Women's Care Center and Occupational Health Services, while expanding its surgical capacity and making strides in same day and minimally invasive surgery. In 2006, APD raised $4.3 million to fund the updated and expanded Robert A. Mesropian Center for Community Care, and help support future renovations to the main hospital building. In 2010, APD closed its long-term care facility and converted the space to the new Medical-Surgical West unit. In 2011 a major renovation was started on the inpatient wing. In 2012 a dedication ceremony was held on June 26 to name the new inpatient wing for Donald Faulkner Dickey in honor of the late son of Closey and Whit Dickey. Patients were moved into the new space on October 4.

The hospital has continued to grow and change to better serve the community for more than 75 years.