Phebe's Memorial to Husband and Son 'A Pleasant and Agreeable Occurrence' for Marysville
In 1907, Marysville was the largest city between Sacramento and Portland, Oregon.
It had impressive buildings, was the center of railroad operations, had a strong economy and well-developed social institutions, including theaters, fine schools and one of the first public libraries west of the Mississippi River. Five decades removed from its Gold Rush heyday, when for a brief moment it was the third largest city in the state, Marysville in 1907 was still considered the hub of all economic and cultural activity in the northern Sacramento Valley.
Yes, Marysville had everything a modern city could offer.
Unless, of course, you became sick or injured.
As the Marysville Daily Appeal pointed out in a 1907 article announcing rumors that a remarkable woman from a remarkable pioneer California family was about to donate her family's 4,000 square foot "mansion" for a hospital: "Marysville is in need of a hospital. There is now no place where sick and injured can be taken for treatment and the expense and delay consequent upon sending patients to Sacramento or other places where hospitals are maintained is too great for safety."
The rumors announced in the 1907 Daily Appeal article that Mrs. Phebe Rideout was willing to give to the City of Marysville her residence property at the southeast corner of Fifth and E streets to be used as a public hospital were true.
The newspaper said, "It would be a pleasant and agreeable occurrence for this city…if the gift should be made. Marysville…with her great army of employed and the center of operations of railroads and other industries employing a great number of men, should by all means have a hospital, and if Mrs. Rideout will donate her residence for the nucleus of the institution the people of the city will certainly attend to the detail and remodel the building and furnish the hospital."
Her home became a hospital, and the hospital grew into a community health organization, the Rideout Health Group, which cares for patients in our Northern California region.