In 1922, the Shrine of North America opened its first Shriners Hospital for Crippled Children in Shreveport, La. with the mission to provide expert orthopaedic care to children under 18, free of charge.
By 1927, 14 Shriners Hospitals for Children were operating across the United States. Only, the Shrine did not plan for one of them: the Shriners Hospitals for Children—Greenville.
The Shriners’ Imperial Board of Trustees never arranged for a hospital in South Carolina. Hospital placement was designed so each section of the country would be served, and Scottish Rite Hospital in Atlanta, Ga. was already treating children from several adjacent states.
However, a Shriner from Atlanta, Forest Adair, noticed a large number of applications for admissions to the Scottish Rite Hospital coming from children in South Carolina. Because of this, Adair believed a similar hospital could thrive in the Palmetto State as well.
To spark interest in others for the project, Adair gave several presentations to Hejaz Shrine Temple in Greenville, SC. Adair was able to win over local businessmen and involved members of Burgiss Charities, W. W. Burgiss, J. B. Duke and B.E. Geer, who pledged $350,000 to build and equip a hospital in Greenville, SC.
Although Burgiss Charities were short $35,000, Hejaz Temple loaned the rest to help complete the project.
The first Shriners Hospitals for Children—Greenville opened its doors on September 1, 1927 on Pleasantburg Drive. The original hospital saw many renovations over the years, but in the late 1980s it became apparent that the facility could no longer hold the growth it was experiencing. So, in 1989, the Greenville Shriners Hospital moved near the medical campus of Greenville Memorial Hospital on West Faris Road.
Today, our state-of-the-art hospital remains open and dedicated to its three-fold mission of treatment, education and research.