Newton, NC – On Monday, November 14, at 6:30 pm, the Sherrills Ford-Terrell Friends of the Library, in partnership with the Historical Association of Catawba County, will sponsor a special viewing of the documentary “Miracle” by Professor Richard Eller. Professor Eller, Historian in Residence at the Historical Association, and Dr. Amber Clawson, Director of the Historical Association, will present the program and answer your questions after viewing the film.
The documentary “Miracle” is the result of an innovative partnership between Catawba Valley Community College and the Historical Association of Catawba County that recounts the remarkable events of the 1944 Polio outbreak and the extraordinary actions taken by the citizens of Catawba County that impacted other parts of the State and country. When hospitals in Charlotte and Gastonia were filled to capacity there were no facilities with space to treat the local patients. The citizens of Hickory decided on a Wednesday to open a hospital, and on Saturday the first patient was admitted. The speed at which this occurred and the tremendous effort involved is the source of the title “Miracle”. Viewers are invited to step back in time to learn about the 1944 treatment of Polio and these remarkable events through first account stories told by actual patients and volunteers.
The initial building was a stone structure that was already occupied as a summer camp. Army tents were used and additional frame structures were built. Much of the construction and other work at the hospital was accomplished by a massive local volunteer effort. Patients from across North Carolina and some neighboring states came to the hospital in Hickory. The hospital received national publicity including an article in Life Magazine.
Do not miss this presentation at the Sherrills Ford-Terrell Library to learn more about this fascinating episode in Catawba County history.
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