6. Sea View Mural
Miss Virginia Allen, the last living Black Angel nurse at the unveiling ceremony in January
Just in time for Black History Month, a new mural has just been unveiled at Staten Island’s Sea View Hospital. “The Spirit of Sea View” by Yana Dimitrova, depicts the hospital’s deep history dedicated to serving the most vulnerable populations of New York, including the role of the Black Angels. The project was completed under New York City Health + Hospitals Community Murals Project in partnership with the Laurie M. Tisch Illumination Fund and is located in the E. Robitzek Building at Sea View.
It consists of four panels, each highlighting significant individuals and events of Sea View’s past. In the mural, you’ll see a reference to the Delft terra cotta panels that were salvaged from the abandoned tuberculosis buildings in the hospital. One of the panels focuses on the Black Angels of Seaview Hospital who were critical in providing care for patients during the tuberculosis pandemic (the cure for tuberculosis was discovered at Sea View). Called Black Angels by their parents, around 300 of African American nurses came to Seaview from across the country between 1928 to 1960 to help patients fight tuberculosis. Although many white nurses left Seaview during the height of the pandemic, Black nurses fearlessly and heroically served patients at the risk of their own lives.