A Veterans Home will be reestablished in perpetuity on the VA West LA campus. It will be operated in a manner that is consistent with the original 1887 charter.
In 1866, following the end of the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln initiated the development of the “National Home.” Flush with quality living quarters, a family of fellow Veterans, various healthcare and support services, opportunities for purpose, amenities for comfort, and environments to heal, the National Home was created to provide Veterans struggling with life following their service to the country.
Through an 1887 act of congress, Arcadia Bandini de Baker and Senator John P.Jones donated 300 acres of land in Los Angeles to form the Pacific Branch of the National Home. Although the Pacific Branch hosts the West Los Angeles VA Campus and a large healthcare enterprise, these hallowed grounds are in need of new development and restoration of historic sites to continue the intended legacy of support and honor to our Veterans. We, the 1887 Fund and our friends and supporters, intend to fulfill the intended purpose of that very special donation of land.
1887 Fund, founded by Arcadia Bandini de Baker’s great-niece, Carolina Barrie, was created to be a catalyst in this process for the physical and spiritual restoration of the Pacific Branch. While the Department of Veterans Affairs works to finalize their Pacific Branch Master Plan, former VA Secretary Robert McDonald entrusted the 1887 Fund with restoring five historic properties, beginning with the Wadsworth Chapel, that will serve as a beacon of hope and hospitality throughout the coming years of transformation.
Upon completion of the Chapel, 1887 Fund will begin efforts to renovate and restore four additional properties on the Pacific Branch Campus including the Governor’s Mansion, Superintendent’s Home, Trolley Station, and Hoover Barracks.
“Quote from Louis Gunkel, a member of the Board of Managers, National Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers found on Metabolic Studio's position paper PDF.
[O]ur constant aim has been to care for the disabled soldier and provide for [him] a home – a pleasant, comfortable, and happy HOME.