Those who’ve never stepped through the portal of a mental asylum wish with all their beings never, ever, to be subjected to the need to visit one. Even escorting a loved one to one of these asylums makes a person nervous and out of sorts. Are mental asylums justified in generating this sort of fear? Or do people exaggerate their fears of the unknown, as usual? Read the following 10 most popular stories related to mental asylums – stories of horror, of torture, of wrongful imprisonment, of cruelty. You decide.
10. Asylum That Contributed A Word To The English Language!
Here’s an asylum that was so disorganized and insane, that its very name inspired a word in English. The word ‘bedlam’ stands for confusion and noise; it is derived from the name of the Bethlem Royal Hospital in London. This is the oldest asylum in the world, admitting patients from 1357. Known for its atrocious conditions and cruel treatment of its patients, this asylum became a kind of sideshow for sadist viewers in the 18th century. The public were invited to watch the victims paraded in cages and were even allowed to poke them with sticks.
9. Asylum That Shocked Patients Into Coma
The Pilgram Psychiatric Center in Long Island could house as many as 14,000 patients at a time. This self-sufficient mental asylum adopted extremely aggressive methods of ‘curing the insane’ especially when it had too many patients. Lobotomies and electric shock therapy were the norm. However, the doctors at this asylum started using large doses of insulin and metrozol to drive patients into a violent coma, just to be rid of them.
8. Asylum That Castrated Its Patients
Unbelievable but true – the Kansas legislature actually decreed in 1913 that all mentally and criminally insane people, including idiots, epileptics and imbeciles could be castrated. This cruel system was finally banned in 1961, but not before 3,000 unfortunate residents of Kansas were castrated. All of these castrations occurred in the Topeka State Hospital, which enjoys the gory reputation of strapping victims down till the victims’ skin grew over the ropes that bound them.
7. Asylum That Allowed Satanic Ritual Murders To Occur
A boy called Ricky Kasso was locked up in the Amityville Mental Asylum for being disturbed, but he became a murderer, a Satan-worshiper and a grave robber. At the Walpurgisnacht witch ceremony, Ricky Kasso conducted a demonic ceremony in front of the Amityville horror house. Satanic and cruel acts such as gouging out his friends’ eyes and stabbing him 17 times to kill him, killing a cheerleader and others have been attributed to this person. In 1984, two days after the arrest for the horrible crimes, this Satan-worshiper hung himself, much to the world’s relief.
6. Asylum Where Doctor Prescribed LSD To Patients
Dr. Abramson, the former director of research at the Amityville Insane Asylum, was called a Psychiatric Dracula by his colleagues for his dubious and cruel methods. This particular doctor would prescribe LSD to his patients. He was involved in a program called MKULTRA in which he performed mind control experiments for the CIA. One of his patients jumped out of a New York City window while on the LSD the good doctor prescribed for his patient! Dr. Abramson never informed his patients what he was prescribing them, which resulted in creating several LSD addicts out of regular patients.
5. Asylum With A Bomb Predicting Mental Patient
Edwin P. Fischer, who was declared demented and later admitted to the Amityville Mental Asylum, actually predicted a deadly bombing on Wall Street. This New York Law School graduate predicted that on Thursday, Sept. 16, 1920, a bomb would go off in Wall Street. No one took his ravings seriously, until the bombing took place. Fisher’s friends decided he was having a meltdown but when the bombing actually occurred, they advised him to go to the police. Fisher claimed that the warnings were sent to him through the ether.
4. Haunted By A Female Ghost
The Athens Mental Health Center, Ohio, established in 1874, used cruel tactics such as applying electric shocks, kicking patients in the head, bleeding and freezing patients to ‘cure’ them of their illness. Though the asylum is now closed, many people have reported seeing the shadow of a young female patient named Margaret Schilling, whose body was found on the top floor. Her corpse actually left a stain on the floor, and even now people hear squeaking gurneys and disembodied female voices on the same floor.
3. Haunted Salem Village Asylum
The Danvers State Lunatic Asylum is a huge structure built in Danvers, Massachusetts, formerly known as Salem Village. For those in the know, Salem Village is the location of the witch hunt in 1692. The asylum came to be known as worse than a German death camp, with doctors indulging in hydrotherapy, shock treatment, insulin shock therapy, lobotomies and psychosurgery to keep the insane population in check. The asylum has since been converted to apartments; however, residents claim that lights flicker on their own, invisible footsteps are heard, doors open and close on their own and full body apparitions are seen.
2. Haunted Asylum Draws Satanic Cult
Byberry Mental Hospital, Philadelphia was built in 1906. Due to insufficient funds, the patients received poor care; they were left to starve, unclothed, unsupervised, and living in their own filth. They were also tortured using all possible paraphernalia, gory and inhumane. Murders and suicides were the norm in this asylum. The place was closed in 1990, but has since then been the target of gangs, thieves and practitioners of satanic cults. The asylum’s basement is tunneled with miles of catacombs, and reports of knife-wielding ghosts that wait for visitors abound. Full blown satanic cults practice their dark arts in the catacombs as well.
1. Haunted Asylum Credited With 64,000 Deaths
The Waverly Hill Sanatorium is a massive fortress of doom in Kentucky, built in 1924. Nearly 64,000 deaths have occurred in this hospital, owing to a lack of medicines, sanitation and contagious diseases such as tuberculosis. The asylum was closed down but reopened later as the Woodhaven Geriatrics Sanatorium in 1961. Old people who were admitted to the sanatorium were ill-treated, and subjected to unusual experiments. Though closed now, this once-asylum, later-on- sanatorium-murder-center is reported to be haunted in all its floors, by the ghosts of victims past.
Alex Higgins writes for SelfDevelopment.net one stop destination for downloading Self Hypnosis CDs recorded by world’s renowned Hypnotists.
- Asylum: Inside the Haunting World of 19th-Century Mental Hospitals (brainpickings.org)
- Asylum centre dismisses outspoken nurse (theage.com.au)
- Mental Patients Find Me Attractive (storiesitellatparties.wordpress.com)