St. Mary's History


The first Sisters of St. Mary arrive in St. Louis from Germany and begin caring for smallpox victims.

January 1926

The first meeting is held regarding the construction of St. Mary’s Community Hospital in Nebraska City. Soon after, a letter of agreement to build the hospital was signed.

February 13, 1927

St. Mary’s opens its doors for the first time, operated by the Sisters of St. Francis, Maryville. The new hospital has 35 beds and is equipped with an X-ray machine and $25,000 worth of medical equipment.

October 1937

A 15-bed, $85,000 addition including a Roman Basilica-style chapel is formally dedicated. Mother M. Augustine and Sister M. Ursula led contract negotiations.

October 11, 1942

The outdoor Grotto of Lourdes is erected and blessed by the Most Reverend Louis B. Kucera.

May 15, 1960

The Most Reverend James Casey dedicates the south wing addition, which includes additional surgical beds, a surgical suite, laboratory, X-ray technology, and obstetrics with a nursery.


St. Mary’s begins a $1.85 million remodeling project. The project adds a new emergency suite, laboratory, patient rooms, emergency parking stalls, and respiratory and physical therapy areas.

October 1, 1983

The Sisters of St. Francis, Colorado take over responsibility of the hospital from the Sisters of St. Francis, Maryville.


The Sisters of St. Francis, Colorado transfer the hospital to St. Elizabeth Health Systems.

December 1, 1997

St. Mary’s Community Hospital becomes affiliated with Catholic Health Initiatives.


St. Mary’s begins a $2.4 million renovation project to adapt to an increased demand for outpatient services.


The hospital renovates the surgical suites to enhance the patient experience and quality of care.

October 2014

St. Mary’s opens the doors of a brand-new, 110,000-square-foot hospital campus including an integrated clinic and increased capacity for specialty clinics.