This excerpt is taken from a Dr. A. W. Bridge biography, written by Karen Swanson. She collected information about Dr. Bridge from many of the “old timers” of Eatonville, Wash.
Then in 1930, he moved his headquarters to Tacoma. He maintained a doctor in Eatonville, but closed the hospital there as the good roads and ambulance services made it practical for the people of his hometown community to use the Bridge Hospital in Tacoma.
Dr. Brdige sent his patients to the Eatonville Hospital, and later when he built the hospital in Tacoma, that’s where they went. Then he had a section in St. Joseph’s Hospital, before he built his own clinic. Then when he wanted to build his own clinic, he had a terrible time trying to raise funds for it. First there would would be one organization that would be a group of Catholics, then there would be another organization interested in St. Joseph’s or Tacoma General Hospital. Finally, one of his best friends, Tom Galbraith gave him a boost. They were going to build the Medical Arts Building in Tacoma and they wanted Dr. Bridge to go in there, but he wanted a certain amount of floor space. For the amount of money he would have to spend, he decided he could build his own building.
T. C. Van Eaton owned a building on the corner, but for some reason, Dr. Bridge couldn’t buy that. You see, he wanted to be on a street corner because he was very conscious of fire. What he wanted was where there would be a vacant lot on one side and on the other side he would put up a big tin wall in back of the hospital. He put fire-proof doors on the windows on the south side. Again I stress, he was very conscious of fire. Sander Hutchinson was Dr. Bridge’s business manager in the days when he was expanding. He wasn’t a lawyer, but he was described as being a dar good promotor.