Formerly known as "Creepy-chusetts, Strange-chusetts".

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Tewksbury State Hospital Cemetery, Tewksbury

Continue from: Stonecroft @ Tewksbury Hospital, Tewksbury

There are two cemeteries for Tewksbury State Hospital. The one I visited is called "the Pines Cemetery". The other is simply called "the Pauper Cemetery". They are located in separate woodlands nearby the hospital. According to the Public Health Museum, approximately 15,000 patients, who had no relatives claimed their bodies, are buried in those no-name cemeteries. Apparently, the records between 1854 and 1894 are missing, but at least the patients deceased between1891 and 1930 are buried in the Pines Cemetery. In the Pauper Cemetery, the burials took place as late as 1960's.

Established in 1892, Tewksbury Hospital was originally called as the Tewksbury Almshouse. Many of them were destitute immigrants notably from Ireland. In addition to the poor, they accepted the "pauper insane", alcoholics, and patients with such contagious disease as TB.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Stonecroft, Tewksbury

Reminder: Stonecroft sits in the middle of an active hospital property. Please respect hospital workers and patients and do not disturb the property.

Continue from Tewksbury Hospital, Tewksbury

Conditions at the Tewksbury Almshouse were deplorable. Chronically underfunded, overcrowded and in disrepair, the Almshouse housed an average of 940 men, women and children during the years that Sullivan was there. The mortality rate was very high, and within three months of their arrival, Jimmie Sullivan died. --From Perkins School for the Blind

Stonecroft, Rear

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Tewksbury Hospital, Tewksbury

Old Administration Building, built 1894

Tewksbury Hospital was one of the state run almshouses established in 1852. The Bridgewater, Monson and Tewksbury Almshouse were opened to accommodate an increasing number of destitute immigrants in Massachusetts.

The Bridgewater Almshouse later become a correctional facility for "criminally insane", and Monson became "Massachusetts Hospital for Epileptics" in 1895. Tewksbury began accepting "pauper insane" in 1866. Alcoholics were treated in the course of expansion. The almshouse/ asylum also admitted patients with such contagious disease as TB, small pox and typhoid, but also remained as an almshouse, especially during the time of the Great Depression.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Stuck in the Emerson Iron Lung

(a follow up of: Emerson's Iron Lung and Quonset Hut, Cambridge)

Recently, I visited the Public Health Museum at Tewsksbury Hospital and came across an object I mentioned in my past post.

I live close to the former main office of J.H. Emerson Co. in North Cambridge. The company was the leading manufacture of a negative pressure ventilator a.k.a Iron Lung during the polio outbreaks between the 40's and 50's. It was a temporal measure for the majority of the patients, but some remained to rely on an Iron Lung permanently.