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Isabella Graham Hart

Isabella Graham Hart established a family tradition of commitment to Rochester City/Rochester General Hospital that has lasted for over a century. Born in Rochester on September 16, 1836, she was the daughter of Caroline and Elias Pond. In 1862 she married James C. Hart, and they subsequently had two daughters, Ruth (Mrs. Ralph R. Fitch) and Isabel (Mrs. George B.D. Bonbright).

Mrs. Hart was appointed to the Board of Lady Managers in 1886, setting the pattern of involvement in volunteer activities. When she died in 1898, her husband established an endowment and donated the funds for the construction of the Isabella Graham Hart Nurses’ Home to commemorate her devotion to filling the Hospital’s needs. A central focus of the Home was a Tiffany stained glass window memorializing Mrs. Hart.

Other family members who continued the tradition include her brother, Charles F. Pond, who actively served as a director from 1878 to 1929, and Dorothy Robinson Macomber, a long-time member of the Women’s Board and its President from 1935 to 1937. The family has continued to take leadership roles in the Hospital as Twigs, Board members, and volunteers throughout the twentieth century.

The 1993 Century of Service Award formally recognized the family’s long-standing involvement in the welfare of the Hospital. (Hart Family Archives)