Our Story

Patients who choose Baptist Memorial Health Care are choosing a hospital system with a rich and wonderful history. We started from modest beginnings and have grown to provide care to a wide range of Mid-South communities. Throughout this growth, however, we've maintained our mission and values to provide the highest quality care to help patients get better.

Watch this video to learn about our hospital system's deep history in the Memphis area and how we've become what we are today. If you'd rather read about our story, see the timeline below.

The Baptist Memorial Timeline

1912 – Baptist Memorial Hospital opens

1912 – The first baby is born at Baptist to Mrs. Frank Sherman Vories.

1916 – Baptist becomes the first in the Mid-South to specialize in orthopedics.

1918 – The 100-bed South Wing is built, increasing the hospital's total capacity to 250 beds.

1920 – The 100-bed East Wing opens, making Baptist the largest privately owned hospital in the South.

1928 – The first Physicians' Office Building and Hotel for families is built by Baptist.

1930 – The first Orthopedics textbook is written by physicians at Baptist and the Campbell Clinic.

1936 – Baptist becomes one of the first hospitals in the Mid-South to pipe oxygen into surgery.

1937 – A new, eight-story pavilion is built and increases bed capacity to 500.

1947 – Baptist becomes one of the first hospitals in the country to install automatic elevators.

1956 – The new 13-story Madison East addition opens, bringing the hospital bed capacity to 800. Also, Baptist becomes the first hospital in the region to offer air conditioning and the first hospital in the country with predominantly private patient rooms.

1958 – The 10-story Baptist Medical Building opens.

1960 – Baptist becomes the first hospital in the nation to install a computer for accounts billing.

1967 – The 18-story Union East addition opens, bringing the hospital's bed capacity to 1,825.

1968 – On February 1, the daughter of Elvis and Priscilla Presley, Lisa Marie, is born at Baptist.

1974 – Baptist becomes the first Memphis hospital to install an EMI/CAT head-only scanner.

1977 – On August 16, Elvis Presley is atadmitted to Baptist.

1979 – Baptist Memorial Hospital-East opens as a 400-bed satellite hospital.

1981 – Baptist Memorial Health Care System Inc. is established.

1983 – The Baptist Memorial Health Care Foundation is established.

1985 – The first heart transplant in Memphis is performed by physicians from Baptist Memorial Hospital and the University of Tennessee Health Science Center.

1986 – The first Mid-South adult bone marrow transplant center is created.

1988 – Baptist DeSoto opens.

1989 – Baptist becomes the first in the Mid-South to use laser lithotripsy to disintegrate kidney stones.

1997 – Baptist merges with Memphis' St. Joseph Hospital.

1997 – The HOPE Health Center opens.

1998 – A Baptist neurosurgeon becomes the first in the Mid-South to use a new surgically implanted generator to control epileptic seizures.

1999 – Baptist Collierville opens.

2000 – Baptist East becomes Baptist Memphis.

2001 – The Baptist Heart Institute opens.

2001 – Baptist physicians become the first in the nation to perform radial brachytherapy.

2003 – The Baptist Comprehensive Breast Center opens.

2003 – Baptist becomes the first in the Mid-South to own a new robotic surgery device called da Vinci.

2004 – The Baptist Heart Institute becomes one of the first in the country to use Stereotaxis.

2005 – Baptist's downtown building is demolished.

2007 – Baptist partners with NEA Clinic.

2008 – Baptist Women's Hospital becomes the first hospital in Tennessee designated as a comprehensive center for women's care.

2008 – Baptist becomes the first Memphis-area health care system to offer patients an out-of-pocket health care cost estimating tool.

2009 – Baptist Medical Group (BMG), one of the Mid-South's largest not-for-profit multispecialty physician group practices, is founded.

2010 – Healthgrades ranks Baptist among Top 5 percent of hospitals.

2011 – Mid-South consumers name Baptist Memphis the most preferred hospital.

2011 – Baptist purchases the lease for Baptist North Mississippi from Oxford and Lafayette County officials.

2011 – NEA Baptist Health System Medical Campus construction begins.

2014 – New Baptist Rehabilitation Hospital opens.

From our beginning in 1912 to now, Baptist has put patients first. Our story is a huge part of our success, but it's because of our patients' stories that we've grown to become what we are today. Learn more about our patients' success by reading their stories now.