Our History

Since 1914…

If it hadn’t been for Oscar McMullan’s love of a good cup of coffee, Sentara Albemarle Medical CEnter might never have been built. As the story goes, it was just after finishing a cup of his favorite brew early one morning in 1913 when Dr. McMullan was approached by Dr. John Saliba with an ambitious proposition: to build the first hospital in Northeastern North Carolina. And, as the story continues, the coffee had put him in such fine spirits that McMullan agreed on the spot. Explaining it later, he said it was an opportunity to show his appreciation to the community in which he worked by providing the people with “good care, closer to home.” In 1914, Albemarle Hospital (now Sentara Albemarle Medical Center) opens its doors.

Over the years, the hospital faced many changes: World War I, the Great Depression, World War II, renovations, expansions, equipment purchases, and a growing population. In fact, Sentara Albemarle Medical Center  could be a mirror of the communities it serves – a continuing process of growth, change, and rebirth marks over 90 years of history that is evident even today.