Stillwater Center History
Our long history of providing health services to the Miami Valley dates back to July of 1909 when the combined boards of Montgomery and Preble County Commissioners established funding to care for individuals suffering from tuberculosis. This was the first such effort in the state. The original building houses 24 clients. The need for additional space and convenience quickly became apparent.
The first of the new Structures known as Stillwater Sanatorium opened on April 25, 1918, and it housed 40 clients, followed in 1920 with the opening of the Beck Memorial Building which stood on the grounds until it was abolished in the summer of 1989.
On September 1, 1938, the newest addition to the Stillwater Sanatorium was opened. It was proclaimed as being state-of-the-art in design and equipment to serve the needs of tuberculosis patients. An addition was made to the facility in November of 1949, to provide for the community's increased need for tuberculosis care.
Due to advancements in the treatment of tuberculosis in the 1960s, beds were beginning to be unoccupied. Stillwater then redirected its focus to the emerging unmet long-term care needs of the community in 1968. In that year, 12 children from the community with intellectual and developmental disabilities were moved to the Stillwater Health Center due to the State's closing of a private boarding home. This was the beginning of Stillwater's involvement in caring for persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
In 1976, a license was approved to operate the Children's Building as a specialized care facility for 60 clients. The children were permanently placed in Stillwater's thirty-room, red brick building that was constructed in 1949. This building was known as Githens Hall, named after Lillian B. Githens a nurse, and former facility maintenance supervisor. This building would be the home for the children for the next 18 years. This building was subsequently abolished in the summer of 1989.
On June 4, 1978, an open house was held for the community when the Emergency Shelter/Respite Care Center (located behind the original building) was dedicated as the new Transitional Home. The Transitional Home was designed to minimize stress during the change from an institutional nursing home to a more home-like living situation. This helped the children prepare for a life in the mainstream of society. This building would later be demolished to make room for the construction of the current facility.
1982 brought about more changes for the facility. The second floor of the Stillwater Health Center was opened and licensed to care for an additional 34 adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The additional adults were later moved on March 28, 1990, to the third floor of the original 5-story building.
In the latter part of 1989, a decision was rendered by the Montgomery County Commissioners to only provide services for individuals with severe to profound developmental disabilities. On April 4, 1990, another dream came true when all of the residents from the Children's building were moved into the main building. The main facility was renamed The Stillwater Center on May 9, 1990, and was licensed to provide care for 98 residents.
Construction of the current facility began in the spring of 2000 and opened in April 2003. The current facility has 106,000 square feet and 106 beds, with a 30-bed main facility, two 8-bed homes, and five 12-bed homes. The homes were designed specifically for our resident population. All services are provided on the ground floor; the homes are adjacent and interconnected with some private and mostly semi-private rooms. Each home offers quality bathing and personal care areas, family, and living/dining rooms.