Submitted by Debby Carter, SHSA Librarian (Fresno Flats)
MOUNTAIN AREA — An article on the front page of the October 29, 1970, Sierra Star reads: “Bass Lake Receives 200 Bed Hospital: On Tuesday, Oct. 27, a full 200-bed hospital will be delivered to Bass Lake. According to Supervisor Lonnie Cornwell and Chairman of the Board Herman Neufeld of Madera County, the hospital is a packaged unit owned by the Federal Government and assigned to Bass Lake through the State Department of Public Health and Madera County Civil Defense.
The hospital has three complete surgeries, an X-Ray machine using 60-second Polaroid development, complete pharmacy and laboratory, as well as all equipment and supplies needed to support full operation of a 200-bed general surgical hospital.
The unit will remain in storage at Bass Lake until a large scale disaster dictates its use. It can, and will be set up by a crew of 25 men in a period of three hours either in the Bass Lake Elementary School or elsewhere as needed. Dr. Walter G. Snyder is Medical Chief of Staff for the unit.”
Does anyone know about this unit and what happened to it? Apparently, this was one of the Civil Defense Packaged Disaster Hospitals. You can see photos and read about them here.
It would have required a lot of floor space for storage. Where at Bass Lake could that have been? Is it still there?
Follow-up to History Mystery #87
The bus photo didn’t provide us with any information other than some good speculation that it was most likely the bus driver. There were some good references to some locals who would know, however there was no real identification. We hope that someone will look at the SNO archives and perhaps know who it is one day so we can archive the photograph properly. Due to COVID-19 the museum will remain closed until further notice. We are currently working on how to plan and design our exhibits.
Thanks to all the SNO followers, hope more mysteries can be solved.