Fair Oaks Lodge Sanatorium

Patients' Building.

Photo source: Sanatorium Commission Report,

Fair Oaks Lodge Sanatorium opened in 1918 in Wadena, MN.  It was scheduled to begin admitting patients in February, but delays in the shipment of laundry equipment meant a postponement until May 6. The sanatorium served the counties of Wadena and Todd.  Its opening capacity was 20 beds, which expanded to 36.


The first superintendent was Dr. George Waldie, who arrived in Wadena from the Sassaquin Sanatorium in New Bedford, Massachusetts.  Dr. Waldie also served as superintendent of the Buena Vista Sanatorium at Wabasha until 1926 when he moved to Michigan. From 1937 to 1945, Dr. Walter Broker served as superintendent at Fair Oaks, a position he had previously filled at the Otter Tail Sanatorium.


Two other physicians served briefly as superintendents, but after 1949 the county administrators were unable to fill the position.  Fair Oaks Lodge closed in November 1951, and patients were transferred to Ah-gwah-ching State Sanatorium near Walker. The patients' building was converted to the Shady Lane Rest Home in 1952, being one of the first of the county sanatoriums to make the conversion to a nursing home.


Source:  Invited and Conquered. J.A. Myers, 1949, Webb Publishing. Also, articles in the Wadena Pioneer Journal and the Long Prairie Leader.

Additional resource: Wadena County Historical Society

Fair Oaks Lodge Sanatorium, Wadena, Minnesota