Démence Précoce Catatonique Dermographisme. L Trepsat, 1893. From ‘Nouvelle Iconographie de la Salpêtrière’, 1904. During the second hald of the 19th century, the belief spread that the phenomenon of dermatographism (or ‘dermographism’, or ‘skin writing’) was linked to hysteria and other mental or nervous disorders. Here a female patient at the Salpêtrière hospital in Paris has had her diagnosis ‘Démence précoce’ (dementia praecox) ‘written’ on her back.
St. Elizabeth's Hospital. Wall of room in Ward Retreat 1. Reproductions made by a patient, a disturbed case of dementia precox [praecox?]; pin or fingernail used to scratch paint from wall, top coat of paint buff color, superimposed upon a brick red coat of paint. Pictures symbolize events in patient's past life and represent a mild state of mental regression. Undated, but likely early 20th century
The Marlboro State Psychiatric Hospital was opened in 1931 in Marlboro, New jersey. 1979, 131 patients fell ill due to food poisoning. 4 of those patients died. One woman, who escaped unnoticed for 48 hours froze to death nearby. And, one man was kept tied to his bed for 80 hours over the span of 5 days and died from blood clots due to the tight restraints. Over 940 patients died the graves marked with numbers, not names.
Words embroidered in the 1960's by an unidentified Afro-American woman, hospitalized over 30 years. Now in the Glore Psychiatric Museum in St Joseph MO. Link goes to a nursing-school study of the piece and what is known about the maker.