In the 30 years after its opening, the Erie Canal transformed Buffalo from a sleepy village on the shores of Lake Erie into a bustling, rapidly growing city with a population of 74,000. The waterfront produced stabbings and shootings, and the busy region suffered from its share of common maladies and injuries, including broken bones and hydrophobia. Twice during the 3 decades, Cholera and Typhoid epidemics struck the region with devastating results. The Sisters of Charity had established a tiny hospital in a private home in the early 1840s, but it was woefully inadequate.ntent on forming a proper hospital, 17 men led by Dr. Phineas Strong and Charles Clarke met on a sleety, windy evening in the office of the Buffalo Medical Association at 7 South Division St. on Wednesday, November 21st, 1855. Among the group were businessmen George Hazard, Andrew Rich, and Bronson Rumsey, and Doctors Thomas Rochester and Sandford Eastman.After reiterating earlier conversations, the men unanimously resolved to ... proceed to organize a Hospital Association for the establishment and maintenance of such a charity... and that said association be called... The Buffalo General Hospital.By-laws adopted at the groups next meeting read in part The Buffalo General Hospital is designed as a general charity, to afford the gratuitous medical and surgical relief to indigent persons... paying patients may also be received...and that Provision shall be made by the Trustees for the imparting of clinical instruction in the hospital...