The Cleveland State Hospital

The Cleveland State Hospital, also known as Northern Ohio Lunatic Asylum, The Newburgh Asylum, The Cleveland Asylum for the Insane, and even referred to as "Turney Tech" on some occasions, was an institution that arose out of a growing need to send the mentally ill away to a facility to be treated and hopefully cured. The hospital was located on Turney Road (in what is now Newburgh Heights) on land donated by the family of President James A. Garfield, and was completed in 1855.

Like most of the State Hospitals that were established at the time, the Cleveland State Hospital had an imposing facade and was designed in what is now called the "Kirkbride style." Named after Thomas Kirkbride, he was one of the minds that helped create the state hospital as an institution. The hospital had a large impressive main building with wings to the left and right branching out, sprawling across many acres. The early years of the hospital had a more close-knit atmosphere between patients and staff, which stemmed from the philosophy of state hospitals trying to emulate the parlors of upper class houses. Once it was clear that patients could not be cured quickly and would stay for many years, more structure and expansion was necessary.

In 1872 a fire struck the Cleveland State Hospital forcing them to build a more substantial building. Shortly after that, the first reports of overcrowding were brought to light. The Cleveland State Hospital was not the only institution that saw these kinds of problems though. The hospital tried to stay on par with the other hospitals around the country in terms of treatment and care. The use of electroshock was just one of the more inhumane methods employed in institutions dealing with mental illness. There was a famous article written by Albert Q. Maisel that was featured in Life Magazine called "Bedlam 1946" that made the treatment of patients at Cleveland State Hospital (as well as hospitals in Pennsylvania and to a lesser extent New York) known to a national audience.

The later years of the Cleveland State Hospital showed significant improvement in care. The state of Ohio phased out the Cleveland State Hospital, and in 1975 it became known as the Cleveland Development Center. The Cleveland Developmental Center was a short-lived care center for the mentally retarded. This followed the national trend of deinstitutionalization following World War II. The community would now take over the care of mentally ill patients and see to their well being in the way that the state hospital as an institution was unable to do. The building was eventually demolished in 1977.

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