Crawford Allen, a wealthy textile mill owner, purchased the land from farmer Samuel Wightman in the mid-1800s. Mr. Allen carved out a section of land, approximately 100 acres, and gave it to his daughter, Anne, as a wedding present when she married John Carter Brown, the son of a wealthy Providence merchant, in 1869. The estate was completed in 1872 and the Victorian manor still stands today, a tribute to that marvelous era in Rhode Island history. Mrs. Brown donated the 100 acres to Rhode Island Hospital with the stipulation that the estate be called Crawford Allen Hospital.
Scalabrini Villa is named after Bishop John Baptist Scalabrini, founder of the Missionaries of St. Charles Borromeo. On March 1, 1956, the Scalabrini Community purchased the property from Rhode Island Hospital for $150,000.00, thus the dream came true for a Home for the Italian aged! On October 6, 1957 marked the opening and blessing of “The Bishop Scalabrini Home for the Aged”. During the late 1960s the new “Scalabrini Villa Nursing Facility” was born. With the help of the Director of the Home, Fr. Victor Salmaso, the economics of Fr. Parenti, the support of Senator John O. Pastore and the guidance of the late Fr. Peter Bracchi, it was possible to clear the home of debt.
Finally, on November 4, 1972, Scalabrini Villa again joyfully gathered together the Italian Community and leading dignitaries of Church and State. Bishop Louis E. Gelineau blessed the newly remodeled facility. The new Scalabrini Villa Nursing Home obtained licensing and certification in the government Medicare and Medicaid programs, so that no resident would be turned away due to the lack of money. The Villa was no longer an “Italian Home, but a true multi-ethnic place.
In 1988 Father Edward J. Marino was appointed as the new Director of the Villa & became licensed as Nursing Home Administrator in 1989. Father Marino had many years of experience in rejuvenation & development, and the future quickly became the present. Finally, in 1991 the Villa was identified by the Department of Health as a FIVE STAR NURSING HOME, one of the best in the country! We maintained that record proudly and future expansion became a real possibility.
In October 1994, the new building for Scalabrini Villa opened, doubling in size. Today we can accommodate 120 residents in private and semi-private rooms, providing them with a variety of services. The Villa has been under new management since 2007. The plan of expanding and creating new developments continues. In 2015 the facility became known as Scalabrini Villa Skilled Nursing & Rehabilitation Center.