A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE RSU. WILLIAM BOOTH SEMARANG
Sapuran-Purworejo Village, Central Java is the place where the Salvation Army started its ministry in
Indonesia which was initiated by two Dutch Salvation Army officers named: Staff Captain Jacob Gerrit
Brouwer and Ensign Adolf Teodorus Van Emmerick in 1894.
Eye Clinic Services at William Booth Hospital started from the pioneering of a simple and ancient health
service since the Dutch East Indies era which began:
Early Years 1907:
Captain (doctor) Vilhelm A. Wille and Nyonya assigned by the Leader of the Salvation Army to lead the
ministry for the poor and sick people in Bugangan Semarang. Many of them suffered from eye diseases,
Captain V.A. Wille, who is also a Danish ophthalmologist, has difficulty treating patients due to limited equipment and the condition of the clinic building which does not qualify for a health service.
However, dr. Wille continued to perform his services even though the conditions were minimal and did not
make it an obstacle in his service. The success and ability of dr. Wille, in dealing with eye diseases,
has spread throughout the country, even abroad.
The patients arrived from Singapore, Thailand and East Asia.
Dr. Wille for the first time discovered an eye disease known as Xerophthalmia, this eye disease is common in children because of vitamin deficiency. And Dr. Wille has saved children from blindness. Dr. Wille was hailed as the most efficient ophthalmologist in the entire Netherlands Indies. Because the existing
facilities and services at that time had reached a very poor level, a new location and adequate equipment was needed for a hospital, and this moved an eye patient who regained his sight after being treated by
dr. Wille, to donate a plot of land in a hilly area south of Semarang.
The sincerity of the patient, has moved the hearts of donors to provide a number of funds both from
individuals and from Queen Wilhelmina, so that the amount of funds collected was 94,000 guilders.
23 June 1915:
Resident of Semarang, His Excellency Mr. PKW Kern, inaugurated the Hospital. William Booth’s eyes
(the public at that time were known as “Madurangin”) with the excellent rooms and equipment of the day,
and all patients were transferred to this new place.
With the inauguration of this new service center, this hospital has progressed so rapidly that it needs
several personnel to help with these services, including: dr. Nana Krudsen, dr. Fast, dr. Soemitro,
dr. M.M. Webert and dr. P. Pilon.
Hospital work. William Booth’s eye clinic stopped during World War II, where the hospital was completely taken over by the Japanese government by placing an ophthalmologist named dr. Enoi, assisted by dr. Suryatin from CBZ (now RS. Dr. Kariadi). After Japan lost, the Dutch government still put dr. Horst (a Dutch) to serve in this hospital.