TALA’s museum includes information about the treatments, such as they were, used on patients. Many seem designed more with an eye to restraining the inmates than curing them.

The "Tranquilizing Chair" where patients were restrained until they calmed down. Beside it is a full-body straight jacket.

The “Tranquilizing Chair” where patients were restrained until they calmed down. Beside it is a full-body straight jacket.

An "Utica crib" used for the transport and restraint of patients.

An “Utica crib” used for the transport and restraint of patients.

A bath used to "calm" patients by restraining them in a bath of cold or warm water for hours on end.

A bath used to “calm” patients by restraining them in a bath of cold or warm water for hours on end, complete with very unhappy mannequin.

Although electro-convulsive therapy ("electroshock") wasn't used until the 1930s, by the 1880s devices such as these were used to administer electric shocks to patients.

Although electro-convulsive therapy (“electroshock”) wasn’t used until the 1930s, by the 1880s devices such as these were used to administer electric shocks to patients.

You can view a scan of an 1895 catalog of “electro-medical and electro-surgical” instruments here. They came with all sorts of attachments, including vaginal and rectal wands, which give me the heebie-jeebies just thinking about.

And that’s it! I hope you enjoyed our virtual tour. And if you’re ever near Weston, WV, I hope you’ll take a couple of hours of your day to visit and see the place for yourself. šŸ™‚


Comments

Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum (Part 3) — 2 Comments

  1. I need to get more information on this museum. Psychology was a truly horrifying at times in the name of ‘helping’… so sad all the people who suffered and still suffer from those intending to assist. Hugs, Z.

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