History of the Academy of Medicine

The Academy of Medicine houses the oldest medical society in Atlanta, the Medical Association of Atlanta, and represents the prominence of the medical profession in the city as well as the determination of the society to provide the best medical services and facilities available. The building itself is an excellent example of Neo-Classical architecture. Architect R. Kennon Perry (1890-1954), with the architectural firm of Hentz, Adler, and Shutze, supervised the project, but the design is attributed to one of the firm's partners, Philip T. Shutze. The Academy of Medicine was one of the few non-residential projects by Shutze's, who was a well known Atlanta architect responsible for homes such as Swan House. Organized medicine developed in Fulton County in 1854 with the establishment of the Atlanta Medical College and the Brotherhood of Physicians, soon after known as the Atlanta Medical Society. Meetings of the society were suspended during the Civil War, but resumed after 1865, though the society's name changed with several reorganizations over the years. Prior to construction of the Academy of Medicine in 1941, the medical society held its meetings in various locations. As a central meeting place for the medical society, members used their new home to share ideas and discuss medical techniques and theories. The Academy of Medicine also served as a training center for interns and society members.

Over the past two decades, an emphasis on specialization within the medical profession, and increased access to medical information through hospital libraries and conferences, reduced the demand for use of the building. By the late 1970s, the building was in disuse and disrepair. In 1981 the medical society leased the property to Atlanta Medical Heritage, Inc., a non-profit corporation responsible for raising funds and supervising a planned restoration of the building. The restoration, completed in 1983, adapted the building for the leasing of meeting and office space, as well as use of the auditorium.

(Article above from http://www.nps.gov/)

Below are 3 photos of the Historic Academy of Medicine: The Rotunda, The Auditorium (now referred to as the Theater), and The Library (now referred to as the Dining Room)