A. Alley, died at the age of 80 in 1904, was a much-beloved local school
teacher for 40 years. She taught at the "old" Gerry at 19
High Street. She was always interested and devoted to helping the sick
infirm, inlcuding being Secretary of the Soldiers Aid during the Civil
War and, with Grace Oliver, co-founder of the Marblehead Visiting Nurses
Association. She also served on the board of the Marblehead Female
Society. She would often bring soup to sick friends and shut-ins.
In her will, she gave her 6 Franklin Street residence, plus a shop, a barn and the land thereof to the Town of Marblehead. The value at that time was approximately $3,000. She got the idea for establishing an emergency hospital when the trolley line first ran down Franklin Street and she feared that people injured by the trolley would have no place to seek treatment.
In 1921 a hospital named in her honor was opened with six beds in the old wooden structure. 29 years laters the Town voted to build a modern hospital on Widger road at a cost of $60,000. The new Mary A. Alley Hospital, also named in her honor opened in May of 1953, with 16 beds and a maternity ward.
-- Harry Wilkinson Photo Collection