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In 1949 a Chamber of Commerce hospital committee was formed and began taking the first steps toward a visionary project -Ward Memorial Hospital. The Chamber's "Hospital Committee" compiled the costs of building a new hospital to present to taxpayers -the first hospital bond issue was defeated in 1950. If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. After one private hospital discontinued practice due to inadequate facilities, leaving only one that could handle just 23 patients, the need for a county hospital was again fronted to the citizens in 1953. With the support of local doctors, civic groups and women's clubs, a bond election was called in March of 1954. In June of 1954 the voters voted six-to-one in favor of a county hospital.