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Organizational and Hospital History: Advocate Lutheran General Hospital History

Discover digitized historical materials including books, pamphlets, photographs and other items from Advocate Aurora Health and its predecessor hospitals


Advocate Lutheran General Hospital can trace its beginnings to the 19th century. Founded in 1897 by Norwegians who had settled on the Northwest Side of Chicago, Lutheran General Health System (LGHS) originally was known as the Norwegian Lutheran Deaconess Home and Hospital. It carried on a broad community program of social work and care for court-adjudicated youths, as well as operating a hospital and a training school for nurses and deaconesses. In 1904, the organization came under the control of the Norwegian Lutheran Church in America, which later evolved into the Evangelical Lutheran Church, The American Lutheran Church, and now the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

The greatest period of growth for LGHS began in 1959 when Lutheran General Hospital was opened in Park Ridge, Illinois. At the same time, the Lutheran Institute of Human Ecology was formed to establish ministries in alcoholism and substance abuse, senior services, parish nursing, bio-ethics and medical education. LGHS grew into a vertically integrated service organization committed to providing a continuum of health care for its communities.​​​​​​

Advocate Health Care. (n.d.). History. Retrieved June 1, 2022 from
Advocate Health Care. (n.d.). Partnerships & Mergers. Retrieved June 1, 2022 from