1904 – 1953
The Board of Trustees and its Chairmen directed the College during these years of
After many prosperous years on Pine Street, PCIO bought its first building at 19th
and Spring Garden streets in 1916. The College, officially renamed Philadelphia College
of Osteopathy (PCO) in 1921, added a new hospital to the rear and acquired two adjacent
townhouses—one for additional classrooms and clinics, the other for a nurses’ home.
The 1930s were a time when the curriculum expanded, pre-osteopathic and graduate schools
started and PCO created the profession’s first Department of Osteopathic Research.
It was also a time when the clinics, known for their “booth doctors,” played an increasingly
important role in providing health care to the community.
During the war years, PCO accelerated the curriculum from four years to three, then
welcomed many returning GIs into the classes of the late 1940s and 1950s. Medicine
was becoming more specialized and complex, increasing the need for clinical training.
In 1951 PCO acquired Women’s Homeopathic Hospital at 20th Street and Susquehanna Avenue,
making it into a satellite facility called North Center Hospital. Many PCO medical
students, nurses, interns and residents trained here.
The school would have its second president beginning in 1953.