Print / View Finding Aid as Single Page

© 2011 New-York Historical Society logo

Bible and Fruit Mission to the Public Hospitals of New York City Records
1877-1978
 MS 59

New-York Historical Society
170 Central Park West
New York, NY 10024
Phone: (212) 873-3400


© 2011 New-York Historical Society

Collection processed by Ann Christiansen

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit on February 14, 2012
Finding Aid is written in English.

Historical Note

The purpose of the Bible and Fruit Mission to the Public Hospitals of New York City was to distribute comfort and relief to patients in New York City’s Public Hospitals and to teach them the Gospel. The charity was founded in 1874 and incorporated in 1900 to visit patients in New York City's Hospitals who had no relatives or friends to visit them. It was started by a group of Protestant women who wanted to do charity works in the New York City’s Public Hospital for the holidays in 1874. In December 1875 women representing various Protestant Churches organized into this charity that would serve between 1,500-2,000 patients every year. A member of the organization would visit between 300 to 400 patients per week. They would bring sweets, basic necessities, and Christian reading material and the gospel to be distributed among the patients.

The Bible and Fruit Mission was located at 5 East 48th Street in New York City. The organization started visitation with the following hospitals: Charity Hospital, Convalescent Hospital, Bellevue Hospital, and the City Hospital. The Bible and Fruit Mission expanded into visiting the following hospitals: Homeopathic Hospital, Metropolitan Hospital, Almshouse, Hospital for Consumptives, City Home Hospital, Farm Colony, Marine Hospital, Sea View Hospital, Cancer Hospital, Welfare Hospital, Goldwater Memorial, Bird S. Coler Memorial, Elmhurst General, Cumberland Hospital, King County Hospital, Samaritan Hospital, Delafield Hospital, Coney Island Hospital, Harlem Hospital, and College View Nursing Home.

The Bible and Fruit Mission was largely run on donations and volunteers, until 1900. In 1900 the organization incorporated and started to use interest from investments to operate and hire people to visit patients. Investment money came mostly from bequests from various people in the New York area. In 1975, the Internal Revenue Service decided that the Bible and Fruit Mission no longer met the criteria for a non-for-profit foundation under the law. The Internal Revenue Service decided that the Bible and Fruit Mission was a private foundation and would have to pay taxes on its income. The charity was to pay 4% income tax on its investments, unless 10% of the charity's income came from public funds instead of investments. The East Midtown Protestant Chaplaincy Inc. offered to help the Bible and Fruit Mission reach its goal of 10% income from public funds. The Bible and Fruit Mission was able to reach its goal and did not have to pay taxes that year. In 1977, the Bible and Fruit Mission's board unanimously agreed to merge with the East Midtown Protestant Chaplaincy, Inc and dissolved the charity.