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Rush University Medical Center Archives: Rush Oak Park Hospital, 1907-present

Welcome to the Rush University Medical Center Archives. The Rush Archives, a department of the Library of Rush University Medical Center, is the official archival agency of Rush University Medical Center and Rush University.


Brief History of RUSH OAK PARK HOSPITAL, 1907-present:

Oak Park Hospital, 1922, in the History of Medicine and Surgery and Physicians and Surgeons in Chicago

  • 1904: Oak Park Hospital association incorporated to raise funds for hospital construction.
  • 1907: Oak Park Hospital and Training School for Nurses opened, supported by John W. Tope, MD, (Rush Medical College, class of 1870) and the Sisters of Misericordia.
  • 1917: Oak Park Hospital School of Nursing affiliated with Loyola University.
  • 1971: Oak Park Hospital School of Nursing closed.
  • 1986: Ownership of Oak Park Hospital was transferred to the Wheaton Franciscan Sisters, Inc.
  • 1993: The Medical Center becomes third and equal member of Synergon Health System of Oak Park. Synergon was formed in 1990 by WFSI-Illinois, a regional holding company of Wheaton Franciscan Sisters, Inc., and WestLake Health System. Synergon health provider organizations included Oak Park Hospital, beginning Rush's partnership with the hospital.
  • 2003: Oak Park Hospital is renamed Rush Oak Park Hospital.
  • 2013: Rush Oak Park Hospital acquired by Rush University Medical Center.
  • 2017: Rush Oak Park Hospital further integrated with Rush University System for Health.

Further History:

Opened in 1907 by John W. Tope, MD, a Civil War veteran from New Philadelphia, Ohio, and the Sisters of Misericordia, a French-Canadian order that had successfully built and managed a number of hospitals in the U.S. and Canada, Rush Oak Park Hospital was the first medical facility in the area.

Today, while firmly rooted in its community’s history, the hospital stands as a full-service health care facility with expert physicians and staff utilizing modern technology.   

The Sisters of Misericordia ran ROPH up until 1986, when ownership was transferred to the Wheaton Franciscan Sisters, Inc. In 1997, the hospital partnered with Rush University Medical Center, adding to its renowned services, programs and physicians while continuing to provide exceptional and compassionate health care service that promotes the dignity and well-being of the community it serves.

The hospital was renamed Rush Oak Park Hospital in 2003, to strengthen its ties to the Medical Center. 

In 2013, Rush University Medical Center acquired the hospital outright, solidifying its continued investment in community health care. Rush Oak Park Hospital offers the same specialists, equipment and high standards of care as Rush University Medical Center. The partnership provides patients with collaborative care at the highest level.

The ROPH campus has grown over the years to include the Breast Imaging Center, state-of-the-art interventional radiology and surgical suites, and a comprehensive Center for Diabetes and Endocrine Care with an American Diabetes Association-recognized education program and board-certified endocrinologists.

The campus is also home to the 135,000-square foot Rush Medical Office Building, which houses approximately 30 medical offices as well as an advanced magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) system operated in cooperation with Oak Park Imaging Services. The Rush Medical Office Building also houses the Rush Pain Management Center and the Rush Outpatient Pharmacy.

The Rush Oak Park Physicians' Group has practices in Oak Park, Hillside, Elmwood Park and North Riverside.

CAPTION: Oak Park Hospital, 1922, in History of Medicine and Surgery and Physicians and Surgeons of Chicago.

NOTE: Although the Rush University Medical Center Archives does not hold the institutional records of ROPH, we welcome questions regarding its history. We will try to provide users with relevant resources or connect researchers to appropriate channels for assistance.

Using the Rush Archives

Rush Archives Service Hours: 

The Rush Archives offers on-site services one day a week. Often, we can assist researchers using digital resources.

Please explore this webpage and our online resources before contacting the Rush Archives for assistance.

Summer 2022 Update: We will have limited appointment availabilities this summer but will try our best to accommodate researchers.

Ask the Archives buttonContact the Archivist: 

Submit Request to Nathalie Wheaton, MSLS, Archivist: Ask the Rush Archives

Note for researchers: Internal reference requests are given precedence. External requests will be addressed as time allows. However, our website will lead you to a number of digital resources from the Rush Archives that may meet your information needs.

Visiting the Rush Archives: In-person visits from researchers must be approved by the archivist ahead of time.

Location: 1700 W. Van Buren Street, Suite 086, Chicago, IL 60612.

Using our Material in your Publication/Exhibit/Presentation: Contact the Archivist for a Permission to Publish form and fee table.

Citing our Collections: Footnotes or captions should indicate the collection or other identifying information from our finding aids. Please contact the Archivist for more information. Basic format for citation:

[Identification of item], in the [Name of Collection] [Collection Number], Rush University Medical Center Archives, Chicago, Ill.

Looking for Medical Records/Patient Records? Visit Rush University Medical Center's Health Information Management Office.

Looking for Student Records/Transcripts? Visit Rush University's Office of the Registrar.

Looking for Verification/Credentials for Residency or Fellowship Programs? Visit Graduate Medical Education.

Looking for Birth, Death or other Vital Records? Visit the Illinois Department of Public Health.

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