St. Mary's Hospital of Emporia was first opened on this location in 1884 by the Sisters of the Order of St. Francis at Lafayette, In. For many years it was the only hospital between Kansas City and Wichita, and it was sustained not only by members of Sacred Heart Parish but by residents of the entire Emporia area.
In 1928 the building was replaced by a new St. Mary's Hospital at 15th Avenue and State Street in Emporia. The White Cross here at this memorial site was a part of that hospital until it closed in 1991.
This memorial honors the Catholic nuns, Franciscan priests, doctors, nurses and all other care-givers who dedicated a part of their lives to St. Mary's Hospital.
The Catholic nuns who administered the hospital are named below:
Sisters of St. Francis of Lafayette, In. later of Colorado Springs, Co. and Mishawauka, In. 1884-1963
Sisters of St. Francis of Dubuque, Ia. 1963-1985
Sisters of St. Joseph of Wichita, Ks. 1985-1991