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Fondation Ophtalmologique Adolphe de Rothschild, Paris

In his will, Adolphe von Rothschild (1823-1900) requested that his widow, Julie (1830-1907), should establish a hospital in Paris for treatment of optical diseases, to be called Fondation Ophthalmologique Adolphe de Rothschild. Adolphe himself had suffered an accident which required treatment by an ophthalmologist in Geneva, and he was encouraged by the specialist to establish a similar clinic in Paris. The building was opened on 1 May 1905 at the comer of the rue Manin. It had 62 beds, and during its first year treated 80,000 patients. The foundation was aware of the difficulty some people experienced leaving work for medical treatment and so remained open for consultations in the evening. All the consultations, the medication and treatments were paid for by the foundation. Edmond de Rothschild (1845-1934), cousin of the founder Adolphe became president of the Board of Directors, in 1909.

During the First World War, the foundation was put at the disposal of the he Military Health Service for the war wounded, and required additional funding to keep going. Baron Edmond de Rothschild (1845-1934) made the required donation, which enabled expansion to take place. The rejuvenated service had departments of neurology, radiology, cardiology, and neuro-surgery. Edmond's son Maurice de Rothschild (1881-1957) became president of the Board of Directors, in 1934. In 1937 new statutes allowed the Foundation to adapt to the Social Insurance system while continuing to provide free care for people on low incomes.

When the Second World War broke out, the Fondation continued to operate until the entry of the Nazis into Paris in 1940. The post-war period required a considerable effort to rebuild the hospital, which was supported by Baroness Noémie de Rothschild (1888-1968), wife of Maurice de Rothschild. In 1957, her son Edmond (1926-1997) became President of the Fondation. The year 1962 saw the beginning of a new era for the Foundation. After the appointment of a new director, Pierre Aubin, major renovation was undertaken. The hopsital continues its work today.

Fondation Ophtalmologique Adolphe de Rothschild, Paris, booklet, 1905

000/1935, 1 item

Booklet La Fondation Ophtalmologique Adolphe de Rothschild" by Le Docteur A. Trousseau. Paris, 1905.

Fondation Ophtalmologique Adolphe de Rothschild, Paris, secondary sources, 1905

000/1947, 000/2144, 2 items

Two copies of L'illustration, No 3245, 6 May 1905, featuring an illustration of the Institut opthalmologique des Buttes-Chaumont a Paris (Fondation du Baron Adolphe de Rothschild).

Fondation Ophtalmologique Adolphe de Rothschild, Paris, postcards, c.1910-1911

000/2116, 000/2322, 2 items

Colour postcard of Fondation Opthamologique de Rothschild, Rue Manin, Paris, c.1910.; postcard of the Fondation Ophthalmologique de Rothschild rue Manin, Paris, 1911.