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Boston Lunatic Hospital


Historical note

The Boston Lunatic Hospital was established by Chapter 131 of the Acts of 1839. It was built on First Street in South Boston in 1839. Two wings were added in 1846. In 1887, the former Home for the Poor at Austin Farm became an outlying ward of the Boston Lunatic Hospital for chronic and mild cases of insane persons. In 1892, the City purchased Pierce Farm on Walkhill and Canterbury Street and built two hospital buildings. Two new hospital buildings were also built at Austin Farm. By 1895, all patients housed in the hospital at South Boston were transferred to Austin and Pierce Farms. The men were housed on Pierce Farm and the women were housed on Austin Farm.

Found in 3 Collections and/or Records:

Boston Lunatic Hospital patient register

Identifier: 8504.002
Scope and Contents note This collection contains only one volume of records from the Boston Lunatic Hospital. This volume is a list of patients who entered the Boston Lunatic Hospital between December 1839 and February 1854. A note on the first page of the volume states that this list was compiled from the monthly reports submitted to the Board of Visitors of the Hospital by the Superintendant of the Hospital. There are also a couple of pages of printed text, which list the members of the Board of Visitors for the...

Institutions annual reports

Identifier: 8500.001
Scope and Contents Includes copies of annual reports of the Board of Directors of Public Institutions, 1857-1886 and 1888; Commissioner of Public Institutions, 1890-1891, 1893-1894, 1897, and 1928; Institutions Registration Department, 1901, 1913-1915; and one bound volume of City Documents relating to the Lunatic Hospital, Inspectors of Prisons, Directors of Public Institutions and Rules and Regulations, 1863-1869. Annual reports can also be found in the City Documents series.

Report of the Superintendent of the Boston Lunatic Hospital and Physician of the Public Institutions at South Boston

 Item — Box: SB - 011, Folder: 6
Identifier: 0140.025
Scope and Contents note The Physician of the Boston Lunatic Hospital summarized the period from July 1, 1840 to June 30, 1841. In numerical tables and in prose, the report categorizes the admissions and discharges, the patients' ages occupations and marital status, and the duration and causes of their insanity. Separate tables provide admission and discharge statistics for diseases suffered by patients of the House of Industry hospital and at the House of Corrections hospital.