In 1924, Nurses House began when Emily Bourne left $300,000 in her will, stipulating that it be used to provide a place where nurses, ill or exhausted, could come to rest between cases. Although she wasn't a nurse, Mrs. Bourne thought highly of nurses. With the money, a stately, beach-front mansion was purchased. The house could hold up to 60 residents at any given time.

Nurses House was often filled to capacity during the busy summer months, as accommodations were peaceful, restful and provided privacy. Nurses who came to rest were referred to as “guests,” and this term is still used today. Meals were said to be outstanding, enjoyed by all the guests during group dining.

Nearly four decades later, as a result of changing socio-economic times, the governing body of Nurses House realized that nurses really needed short-term financial assistance to get back on their feet in their own communities. In 1959, the Bourne home was sold to create a fund, the only national charitable foundation dedicated to helping nurses in need.

Though Nurses House is no longer a physical place of respite, it continues to meet Bourne’s mission of helping nurses when they need it most.


Expansive grounds provided many opportunities for activities and relaxation (left). Guest relaxing in a Nurses House bedroom (right).


Since Emily Bourne's bequest, Nurses House has recieved millions of dollars in bequests from nurses all over the country to help us meet our mission - year after year.

Those who choose to bequeath a portion of thier estate to Nurses House greatly assist in our ability to advance our mission. They become a part of our legacy circle, a group of individuals who have collectively helped enrich the lives of the nurses we serve. We are extremely grateful for thier generosity. 

Those who have joined our legacy circle are:

Carol Loftstedt - 2023

Shirley Kane - 2023

Priscilla Ciamaga - 2021

Sandra Smith - 2021

Barbara L. Harris - 2019

M. Louise Fitzpatrick - 2018

Nesta Quarry - 2018

Carol Countryman - 2017

Patricia V. Harris - 2016

Sylvia Barker - 2014

Clara Carmichael - 2012

Deloris Aleksandras - 2011

Susan Fraley - 2011

Helen Akst - 2010

Georgette Viellon - 2008

Amelia Albrite - 2008

Edna May Klutas - 2008

Bertha Lundgren - 2006

Sara P. Wagner - 2005

Betty Conway West - 2003

Katherine Halsted - 1998

Ellen Black - 1998

Rachel Lyeth Gilbert - 1998


If you would like to learn more about making a planned gift to Nurses House in your will or living trust and becoming part of our legacy circle please contact us at (518)456-7858 x127.