Back in the day
In the days before welfare and social programs, and before the establishment of hospitals, nursing homes, and assisted-living facilities, people in need often had nowhere to turn. In 1848, Indiana passed new legislation requiring every Indiana county to “provide a public place wherein the unfortunate poor might have care.” Eventually, all 92 Indiana counties established “poor farms,” where able-bodied residents worked to offset the cost of residential care.
Local fanfare accompanied the Marshall County home opening in 1893. As the architecture makes evident, the county intended to create a quality home for their neediest citizens. Wing and Mahurin — a firm renowned for its Romanesque Revival public buildings — designed a grand Superintendent’s Quarters, with living and work space for the director and residents. Originally called the Marshall County Infirmary, the place earned its “Shady Rest” nickname from the many shade and fruit trees planted on the property.
Unfortunately, demolition has claimed a majority of Indiana’s historic county homes. In continual service for more than a century, Shady Rest is an anomaly. The county sold the facility in 1998, but it continued to serve as the Otis R. Bowen Center Shady Rest Home, a private residential center for adults who suffer from mental illness.
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A heartfelt thank you to all of our volunteers and local organizations that have given so much of their time and resources to create a loving and caring home for those in need. It was a two-year process but the results are beautiful. Check out our journey below.
Where we share our meals together
Breaking bread and sharing a meal together is written various times throughout the Bible. Having a meal together provides an opportunity to grow fellowship and a genuine sense of community. It is a chance to nourish our bodies, fill our need for connections and most importantly, it is a time to give thanks to God for his provisions.
We have two dormitory wings to support both men and women during their recovery.
Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord, my soul to keep.
May angels watch me through the night,
And keep me in their blessed sight.