Tennis Racket, 2012.001.006

9 07 2012

With Wimbledon wrapping up, we thought we would highlight this very interesting piece of tennis history found in the recreational therapy supplies at the Oregon State Hospital.  The most striking feature of this wooden tennis racket (2012.001.006), is the color portrait of a young woman named Maureen Connolly, at one time one of the most accomplished tennis players in the world.

Before the Williams Sisters, Graff, Navratilova and even Billie Jean King, Maureen “Little Mo” Connolly became the first woman ever to win a Grand Slam — winning all four Grand Slam events in a calendar year — which she did in 1953.  Did we mention she was just a teenager at the time?

Her accomplishments are incredible considering the length of her career.  A horse riding accident, led to her retirement from tennis at the tender age of 19, just two weeks after she won her third consecutive Wimbledon title. Read the rest of this entry »

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Patients Manage Recreation Plans, 1961

7 05 2012

The following article was published in the Capital Journal on April 28, 1961.

A girl who had talked to no one for seven years — separated from reality by an “escape mechanism” barrier– has shown her first progress through recreation therapy at Oregon State Hospital.

Brought by a staff aide to “The Hut,” she eventually accepted an invitation to dance with another patient.

“The Hut” will be one of two recreation halls to be viewed by visitors to open house Sunday from 1 to 4:30 pm.  Operated by a governing group of patients called the Quoncil, the quonset hut-shaped building is the site of patient-planned parties and dances.

Plan Recreation

The general public sometimes regards the mentally ill as being incompetent and unable to take responsibility, commented Mrs. Ida Boehmer, recreational therapy department director. Read the rest of this entry »