Sometimes you find the darnedest things lying about abandoned buildings… on the second floor of the Fort Totten Army Hospital in Queens, I found this plastic riding grasshopper.  How this object got into a building that had been abandoned for decades is beyond me - the documents on how to zero a .50 caliber machine gun in the basement at least made sense!

This was one of the operating rooms in the Fort Totten Army Hospital, serving the 19th century US Army base in Queens until 1974.  All manners of procedures were performed here; apparently one of its main “client types” were soldiers wounded during training exercises.  But most people who write to me after reading my blog post on the hospital write about another procedure that was regularly performed here - births.  I’ve heard from dozens of people born in the hospital, most between the 30s and the 60s.  When one thinks of army hospitals, one might be inclined to think of amputations, war wounds, and death.  But life also abounded in these places, since they served all military wives living on base.

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