Celebrities/Well-Known People and Johns Hopkins

Learn  little-known facts about well-known people.

Katherine Hepburn's father, Thomas Hepburn, graduated from the school of medicine, in 1905. He became the first urologist in Connecticut.

Actor Cary Grant was a patient at Johns Hopkins in the 1950s. He stayed in isolation but not for medical reasons. Back then the hospital would close the entire floor for a complete cleaning. Grant was admitted to one of those floors and had the place to himself.

Milton S. Eisenhower was president of Penn State and the youngest brother of U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower, served two non-consecutive terms in 1956 and 1971 as president of The Johns Hopkins University.

Eight U.S. presidents were patients of William Wilmer, the first director of the Department of Ophthalmology.

F. Scott Fitzgerald lived in Baltimore in the 1930s while his wife was treated at the Phipps Psychiatric Clinic. He suffered from TB and alcoholism and was admitted to Hopkins’ Marburg Pavilion at least nine times.

Hired by the Trustees in 1875, John Shaw Billings began work as the designer of The Johns Hopkins Hospital the following year. He valued Florence Nightingale’s judgment and sent her the sketches of the hospital and the nursing school in 1876 for her feedback. Two months later she sent Billings her recommendations in 12 pages of notes. He agreed with her recommendations.

Source: Leading the Way: A History of Johns Hopkins Medicine by Neil A. Grauer, JHM Historian

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }


Mary April 30, 2015 at 8:55 am

Wow!!! Interesting and fun stuff to read! Love it!


Stephen Achuff, M.D. April 28, 2015 at 12:47 pm

More regarding Florence Nightingale. She provided the bridal bouquet for Hunter Robb, first Gyn. Chief Resident under Howard Kelly, and Isabel Hampton, first Superintendent of Nursing and after whom Hampton House is named. They were married in London and the bouquet still exists---in the care of the Chesney Medical Archives.


Victoria April 28, 2015 at 12:41 pm

How about John Astin? He graduated from Johns Hopkins in mathematics, became a famous actor, is known worldwide for playing Gomez Addams in the original Addams Family television show, and has a JH theater named after him. Mr. Astin is also currently active in theater at JH. He would be a wonderful addition to the list. Thank you.


Cathy April 28, 2015 at 10:47 am

It is always fun to read fun facts about Hopkins & Baltimore. And right now, some good news is greatly appreated!!


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