Asylum Quotes (50 quotes)
America's Mysterious Psychiatric Asylums
Early Psychiatric Hospitals & Asylums
On October 12, , Eastern State Hospital was established, the first insane asylum in what is now the United States. Eastern State Hospital did a thriving business as it seems there was no shortage of patients. Of course, psychotropic medicines did not exist then, either. As the hospital became more crowded, individual care declined even more to the point where patients were mere inmates to be housed. In an electrical fire in a new wing burned the place down. Increasing demand for capacity outgrew available space for expansion, so the patient load was gradually moved to other facilities between and , with the hospital function of the facility finally shut down in , the work of mental health treatment having been totally moved to a new location outside of Williamsburg which is in operation still today. The old building was reconstructed and opened as a museum in , and today it remains a museum of mental health at the Colonial Williamsburg attraction.
Eastern State Hospital is a museum and former hospital in Williamsburg , Virginia. Built in , it was the first public facility in the present-day United States constructed solely for the care and treatment of the mentally ill. The hospital's patients were moved in the 20th century to a new facility outside Williamsburg. The original building had burned but was reconstructed in Today it operates as a museum about the treatment of mental illness. At the House of Burgesses' first meeting since the Stamp Act and Virginia Resolves , Fauquier primarily discussed the relationship between the Mother Country and these colonists, and expressed optimism for their future. His speech also unexpectedly addressed the mentally ill, as follows: "It is expedient I should also recommend to your Consideration and Humanity a poor unhappy set of People who are deprived of their senses and wander about the Country, terrifying the Rest of their fellow creatures.
NLM Customer Support. The mentally ill in early American communities were generally cared for by family members, however, in severe cases they sometimes ended up in almshouses or jails. Because mental illness was generally thought to be caused by a moral or spiritual failing, punishment and shame were often handed down to the mentally ill and sometimes their families as well. As the population grew and certain areas became more densely settled, mental illness became one of a number of social issues for which community institutions were created in order to handle the needs of such individuals collectively. The Quakers in Philadelphia were the first in America to make an organized effort to care for the mentally ill. The newly-opened Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia provided rooms in the basement complete with shackles attached to the walls to house a small number of mentally ill patients.
Diseases of the mind have always held a special place in the dark regions of our imagination. In this slideshow, we explore the history of how the lunatic asylum of ancient times became the psychiatric hospital of today, including how patients were treated before the advent of modern medicine. And though the treatment of patients who suffer from mental disorders has evolved considerably over the centuries, some of the stigma these people endure is very much the same. The First Facilities. The first mental asylum can be traced back as early as the 5th century in the Middle East.
Boston schoolteacher Dorothea Dix visits the East Cambridge Jail, where she first sees the horrible living conditions of the mentally ill. Her efforts lead to the establishment of psychiatric hospitals by Walter Freeman and his colleague James Watt perform the first prefrontal lobotomy. By the late s, an estimated 50, lobotomies are performed in the United States. Italian neurologist Ugo Cerletti introduces electroshock therapy as a treatment for people with schizophrenia and other chronic mental illnesses. President Harry Truman signs the National Mental Health Act , calling for the establishment of the National Institute of Mental Health to conduct research into neuropsychiatric problems.