A Visit to the Oregon State Hospital, 1916

5 08 2012

This is an excerpt from the Oregon Teacher’s Monthly magazine published in May 1916 (volume 20, no. 9).  Oregon Teacher’s Monthly featured articles written by teachers, students and administrators related to general interest topics and had a news section with a county by county listings of school-related events.  We came across this issue in the holdings of the Oregon State Library.  This excerpt is chapter 10 in a series of articles written by Frank K. Welles, Assistant State Superintendent of Public Instruction, on state institutions.  The information he presents appears to have come from studying published reports of the hospital and a personal tour.

 OUR OREGON STATE INSTITUTIONS

The Oregon State Hospital

 Some of the school children who will read this article have never visited a hospital for the insane and will be interested to know what such an institution looks like, how the hundreds of patients are cared for, what they do and how they live.  The modern hospital for the insane is quite a different institution from what it used to be.  Now it is indeed a hospital for the treatment of persons with deranged minds, most of whom also have some physical ailment, rather than simply an asylum for the detention and safe-keeping of the insane.

Oregon has two hospitals for the insane.  One is situated just east of the city limits of Salem and the other is a short distance west of Pendleton in Umatilla county.  The Eastern Oregon State Hospital was built during 1911 and 1912 and is modern in every respect.  As soon as this institution was completed, 325 patients were transferred to it from the Salem hospital in order to relieve the over-crowded condition at the latter place.  As far as possible, the insane from Eastern Oregon are sent to Pendleton and those from Western Oregon to Salem. The number of insane is increasing so rapidly that the last legislature authorized the construction of a new $100,000 wing to the Pendleton hospital.  This has recently been completed.  There is also a fine farm in connection with that institution.  The last report of the superintendent shows that there are now about 379 insane persons at the Pendleton hospital. Read the rest of this entry »





A Survey of State Mental Institutions, 1940

21 11 2011

Source: A Survey of the State Mental Institutions of Oregon. Washington, D.C.: United States Public Health Service, 1940.

Read the rest of this entry »





How to get to Portland, 1877

28 07 2010

For many years before the opening of the Oregon State Insane Asylum in Salem in 1883, Oregon contracted with a private hospital (the Oregon Hospital for the Insane) in Portland.  Patients from all over the state were sent to Portland. A 1879  disagreement about who was to pay for their transportation, gives an interesting look into what it took to get to Portland in the late 19th century.  The following is an invoice to the State of Oregon from B.F. Burch, the Superintendent of the State Penitentiary in Salem for the transport of a person to the hospital.  It was published in the 1879 “Report Of Committee of Investigation Appointed Pursuant to House Joint Resolutions, Nos. 8 and 13, Passed at the Tenth Regular Session of the Legislative Assembly of the State of Oregon.”¹

State of Oregon,
 To B. F. Burch, Superintendent Penitentiary, Dr.

For conveying S.J. Cardiff, an insane person, to the Asylum, Sept. 24, 1877

Mileage of Superintendent, 100 miles…………………………$ 10.00
Mileage of patient, 50 miles………………………………………$    5.00
Per diem of Superintendent, 1 day……………………………..$    3.00
Fare on railroad for Superintendent and patient…………..$    7.50
Hack Hire at Portland………………………………………………$    3.00
Meals for trip………………………………………………………….$    1.50
                                                                                                      Total:  $ 30.00

I hereby certify that the above account is correct.
 (signed)  B.F. Burch.

Read the rest of this entry »