History of St. Joseph Heights, Part I

Posted on: December 6, 2017 9:30 am
Tags: Archives, Did you know,

The Park Hills Animal Hospital on Dixie Highway

The Dream Began Here

Where? The current Park Hills Animal Hospital at 1555 Dixie Highway. In 1907 this building was part of the Old Fedders Farm that was developed into three plots facing Lexington Pike (now Dixie Highway). The Sisters of Notre Dame bought the front plot.

In the archives of St. Joseph Heights the original deed is preserved. The building was purchased for $3,975.00. During the week two sisters daily commuted from Fifth Street (probably by walking) to care for the newly purchased six acres, including the cows, hogs, and chickens.


In 1907 Reverend Mother Mary Cecilia from the international center of the Sisters of Notre Dame in Europe crossed the ocean to visit the sisters in Covington. The first Sisters of Notre Dame had arrived in Covington in the summer of 1874. On Fifth Street in downtown Covington they established Notre Dame Academy that included a residence for the sisters. However, this facility soon became landlocked. More classrooms were needed to accommodate the increasing number of students. Expanded living quarters were required to adequately house the sisters with proper exposure to healthy, fresh air.

Through the Years

Through the years the building had multiple uses: Salus (health facility for convalescing sisters or brief periods of renewal); classrooms for elementary students; and the rental of two apartments. In 1946 the sisters sold the property to Dr. Byron Bernard, a veterinarian. According to the March 2002 issue of the newspaper Inside Your Town, Dr. Bernard was the nephew of Orville and Wilbur Wright. Ever since then, the building has served as an animal hospital. The current owner is Dr. Mark Collett. Built during the Civil War, the basement walls are two-feet thick. The photo accompanying this article can also be viewed in the Arcadia publication Covington’s Sisters of Notre Dame on page 40. This book was authored by Michael Hargis. For more information about accessing the book, contact Sr. Mary Joan Terese Niklas at 859-392-8120. 


Suggested links

90 Years: St. Joseph Heights

Ways to Give: SND Retirement

Tags: Lourdes Hall articles

Date: on December 7, 2017

Great history!

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