Silvercrest Childrens Developmental Center

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Silvercrest Childrens Developmental Center
Established 1924
Opened 1936
Closed 2006
Current Status Preserved
Building Style Single Building
Location New Albany, IN
Architecture Style WPA
Alternate Names
  • Silvercrest Sanatorium
  • Southern Indiana Tuberculosis Hospital
  • Silvercrest State Hospital


In 1924, the FCTA (Floyd County Tuberculosis Association) purchased the old Handy farm on Old Vincennes Road for $6,500,which included a total of 42 acres, 20 of which were flat, hilltop land. The funds for the hospital were secured by popular subscription from the citizens of New Albany and by city-wide fund raising efforts. Fund raising events included everything from neighborhood skits, as the one given at the Hackett residence at 1732 DePauw Avenue by the neighborhood children charging a 3-cent admission, to a more elaborate pageant produced at Glenwood Park in 1923. This pageant, The Greatest Gift: A Pageant of Health, was written for the benefit of the FCTA, had a cast of 1000 members, and was seen by thousands of people from New Albany, Jeffersonville and Louisville. Pathé News shot a movie of the pageant and it played at the Grand Theater the following Sunday. By 1936, fund raising efforts allowed a 20-bed sanatorium to open on the site. In July 1938, twelve years from the date of purchase of the land, the Indiana General Assembly held a special session to enact a bill locating a site for the Southern Indiana Tuberculosis Hospital.

The hospital was a Public Works Administration project and Indianapolis architect August Bohlen was chosen to draw up the plans. Construction began immediately, and by August 1940, the $1 million, 150-bed hospital received its first patients. A unique feature of the hospital was that it provided individual rooms for the patients instead of the more widely used ward facilities. Silvercrest included an outpatient clinic with numerous laboratories, surgery rooms, kitchen and laundry facilities, and a dental office on site. The original complex included the main building, a residence built for the superintendent, and several guest houses. The hospital served a 32-county area and when the facility opened, it was too busy ministering to its 150 patients to take time out for a formal dedication. On May 10, 1941, state and local dignitaries, including Indiana Gov. Henry F. Schricker, gathered at the site for the long awaited dedication.


By December 1952, five motel-type structures, along with two large residences, were added and dedicated to the medical campus totaling $275,000.00. Hawkins and Walker, well known New Albany architects, drew up the plans, and Sheperd and Rogers, also of New Albany, were the contractors.

The State began to phase out operations at Silvercrest on April 1, 1972. The site was used as the Silvercrest Children’s Development Center until 2006. In 2013 the main building was re-opened as a senior living center,The Villages at Historic Silvercrest, after a $16 million renovation.