After the First World War, Mrs Edith Bangs, president of the American Memorial Hospital Foundation, canvassed the support of the great families on the American East Coast to fund a one hundred bed hospital in Rheims.
In April 1919, an American doctor named Marie-Louise Lefort arrived in Rheims with a large team to treat the victims of gas warfare. Mrs Joseph Krug established a link with the Foundation, and donations flooded in: 200,000 dollars for construction, 6,000 dollars per bed, each sponsored by the family of an American soldier buried in France. The town of Rheims provided the site. On 30 April 1925, the building was inaugurated in the presence of Mrs Bangs, ambassador Myron T Herrick, General Gouraud, and Charles Roche, the new mayor of Rheims. In 1944, the American Memorial Hospital took in the wounded and sick of the American army.
Rheims’ American Hospital still receives a very large annual funding from the American Foundation. Pediatrics is the hospital’s speciality, saving around two hundred severely premature babies every year.
The frescoes in the entrance hall, which were executed by Franco-American painter Robert La Montagne Saint-Hubert, are officially classified as historic monuments.