The following Cresson San photo album was purchased
on eBay in March of 2015. It contains photos taken in the early days of the san and adds details in areas not documented
until now. The album is 7" high and 10" wide and contains 30 images, including 4 postcards and 26 photographs.
The photos are not grouped together by subject matter, but are somewhat random. However, they are presented below just
as they appear in the album.
A. The album cover has no writing on it indentifying its owner or subject
the inside front cover identifies the owner as C. (Chauncey) N. Richey, 129 W. Main St., Uniontown, Pa.
The eBay seller said the owner of the album had passed away in 1950 and the album was found while
cleaning out the attic. His obituary appears at the bottom of this page. Mr. Richey's connection to
the san is not known.
Page 1 Upper: Original San Entrance. This shows that
the entrance walls were originally quite high and were later lowered significantly, perhaps for better visibility for
the guard shack personnel. It appears the entrance was also widened, possibly for safety as auto and truck traffic
The metalwork on
top of each entry stone column is not decorative, but is actually an electric light fixture which has an approx. 30"
diameter round globe on the top. These light fixtures which were moved to another location on the san grounds during
remodeling of the entrance can be seen in Photo #26 at the following link:
Page 2 Upper: Women's East Wing.
Lower: East Wing and Corridor.
Page 3 Upper: Men's Cottages, identified by
the water tank in the background skyline.
Lower: Women's Cottages.
Page 4 Upper: The Men's Tents. These
so-called "tents" on the left side of the photo were actually wooden structures made in the shape of a tent.
They had a wooden roof and floor, but the front, back and short side walls were open to the weather for maximum
fresh air. The buildings on the right are the Open Air Pavilion and the Bath House.
Lower: Men's Tent #14. Each tent housed 4 patients. Each person
had a numbered lounge chair assigned to them in which they would rest most of the day. The lounge chairs could easily
be moved to keep the patients in the sunshine, which was thought to be beneficial in curing TB. Metal beds for sleeping
at night were located near the back of the tent. A metal stand and bowl for washing, shaving, etc. can be seen
between the 2 men on the left.
Page 5 Upper: Tent #14. Another view of
the tent and men in Photo 4 above. The lounge chair under the arm of the man at the right is numbered 129 near the top
of the chair back. Beyond the chair, we can see the trees out back through the open back wall.
Lower: An article in the Harrisburg Telegraph Newspaper from April 21, 1910 says: "The work of clearing the grounds for the construction of the buildings of the Cresson sanatorium of the State
Department of Health has been started and good time is being made in taking off the useless timber and brush. The
tract contains some of the finest forest land on the Alleghenies and the trees will be left standing as far as possible.
The surplus can be used for the building operations, just as the stone will be employed."
To this end, a sawmill shown above was constructed on the san grounds to turn
the felled trees into lumber to be used by the Woodsman Lumber Co. of Cresson who won the contract for the building of the
san. The men pictured may be part of the Workman Lumber Co. or a separate group whose sole job it was to
run the sawmill. A pile of stacked cut lumber can be seen at the bottom left.
Page 6 Upper: Saw Mill. The two men at the left
are standing on a steam engine which powered the saw mill. Large logs are in the foreground ready to be cut into lumber.
Lower: Men of the saw mill on an old portage road.
Page 7 Upper: The Children's Open Air School
Buildings. Three buildings were required to accommodate the approximately 250 children at the san.
The buildings were literally "open air" as the side wall panels could be swung up to allow maximum fresh air to
flow through the room. The stove was used for heating in cold weather.
Page 8 Upper: Children of Cresson San. It's
most likely that these children were all in Preventorium Care and were not TB patients.
Lower: Members of the Red Cross
Page 9 Upper: Men's Camp patients including
a doctor and nurse at the left.
Lower: Men of the saw mill on an old portage road.
Page 10 Upper: The saw mill crew.
Lower: A sow feeding her piglets at the san pig farm. The piggery was started in 1914 and probably for sanitary reasons was located on
the north side of Route 22, at some distance from the hospital buildings.
Page 11 Upper: Grace Chapel. It appears the chapel
has just been completed as there are still some stone and building materials at the site. Also, the shrubbery
has not been planted.
Lower: The identity of these people is not known.
Page 12 Upper: Saw Mill showing logs stacked up
the hill ready to roll down in place to be cut.
Lower: About forty
thousand pounds of fresh pork were produced annually at the Sanatorium piggery. This constituted the major portion of
the fresh pork used in a year to feed the san patients and staff.
Page 13 Private Walk. This walk is unusual for several reasons.
First, it is made of wooden boards, which are not seen in any other photos of the san grounds. The harsh san
weather conditions would have quickly taken a heavy toll on the walkway. Secondly, there is no indication of where
on the grounds this walk was located or what it connects.)
Page 14 Upper: East Wing and Receiving Pavilion.
Page 15 Upper: Power House and Laundry.
Lower: Open Air Schools in winter snow.
Page 16 Upper: Men's Camp with 85,000 Gallon
Water Tank in distance.
Lower: Part of West Wing and West Wing Corridor.
Mr. Richey's obituary from the Uniontown,
Pa Evening Standard Newspaper on September 16, 1950.