The Hospital Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis came to Chippewa Falls on June 28, 1885, at the invitation of Father Charles Goldsmith, the first and only pastor in Chippewa Falls at the time.
By November, the Rutledge home became the site of HSHS St. Joseph's Hospital. The sale of hospital tickets to loggers (a $5 ticket insured the holder for one year in case of sickness including medicine) funded building additions.
In the 1970's, the Hospital Sisters began a major capital campaign to raise funds for a larger facility. The 'new' HSHS St. Joseph's was formally opened on September 21, 1975, on County Highway I. In 1976, the first lay administrator was appointed.
Fifteen Sisters have served as administrator and many worked in the hospital. Educational offerings and retreats for staff preserve the Sisters' mission to provide care in the Franciscan spirit and continue our Catholic healing ministry.