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Minnesota State University, Mankato

Minnesota State University, Mankato

Page address: http://lib.mnsu.edu/archives/fa/smhc/smhc103.html

Minnesota State University, Mankato,
Memorial Library, Southern Minnesota Historical Center
St. Peter State Hospital, St. Peter, Minnesota. Collection, 1855-1974.
SMHC Manuscript Collection 103



St. Peter State Hospital, St. Peter, Minnesota. Collection, 1855-1974. SMHC Manuscript Collection 103. 32 1/2 Hollinger boxes, 1 records center carton, and 27 volumes.

Abstract:

The St. Peter State Hospital collection contains information on the institution from 1855 through 1974. The collection is divided into four series: General Hospital History, 1856-1974; Buildings and Grounds, 1855-1972; Library, 1867-1972; and Volumes, 1866-1952. The most extensive of these series is the General Hospital History. It contains information ranging from newspaper clippings, photographs, correspondence, reports, research notes, and numerous other items. The Buildings and Grounds section contains photographs, blueprints, and information about the institution's property and facilities. The information about the Library pertains exclusively to the library's collections and activities. This section includes numerous photographs of events and individuals along with correspondence and reports. Volumes contain information regarding the institution's spending proclivities and patient account records in addition to other information.

Historical Note:

The St. Peter State Hospital began in March 1866 when the Minnesota State Legislature responded to the need for an asylum by passing "an act for the establishment and location of a hospital for the insane in the state of Minnesota, and to provide for the regulation of the same."The act also created a board of trustees and appointed six commissioners responsible for recommending a permanent location for the state's hospital. A number of Minnesota communities vied for the facility and each claimed to be the most attractive village. However, on 1 July 1866, the commissioners made their recommendation. They opted for St. Peter as the permanent site. Citizens of that community purchased a 210 acre farm for $7,000 which was given to the state for the purpose. Shortly after the commission's report was filed, the board of trustees purchased the Ewing house in St. Peter for temporary use until construction was completed on the permanent hospital. The board of trustees estimated that the refurbished Ewing house with accommodations for fifty patients would exceed the state's demands for years.

The Minnesota State Hospital for Insane accepted its first patient on 6 December 1866 and received more patients from Iowa on 28 December. In its first annual report to the governor, the board referred to the problem that would reoccur in the hospital's history for over the next 100 years. The original estimates of the board had proven incorrect as overcrowding had become the foremost problem two months after the hospital opened. In the spring of 1867, after a reorganization of the board of trustees, construction began on a temporary frame building adjacent to the Ewing property and when completed would house an additional fifty patients. In 1867, the board adopted the "Linear Plan"for the permanent hospital consisting of a center building with attached sections.

During the following ten years, construction proceeded on the permanent hospital while the board reluctantly expanded the accommodations of the temporary hospital to relieve the problem related to the increasing patient population. By 1876, construction ended. The new facility was capable of accommodating 500 patients and the valuation of the property was placed at $563,251.69. Because of the increasing number of patients, the hospital needed to continue operating the temporary buildings even though they needed extensive remodeling.

The problem of overcrowding was exacerbated in by a disaster on 15 November 1880 when fire destroyed the hospital's north wing before being contained. There was no insurance to cover the loss, and officials voiced concern over the possibility of another disaster. In response, the board recommended fireproofing the entire complex by replacing gas lights for electric lights and abandoning the temporary wood buildings.

Throughout the 1880s the hospital expanded. The north wing was rebuilt, two detached structures were erected to the north and south of the main facility, tunnels were built beneath the complex for the distribution of food, and a piggery, corn crib, and greenhouse were built. By 1892, the hospital's farm had expanded from the initial size to 810 acres, and numerous patients helped work the land. Besides providing food and employment opportunities, the farm was an economic necessity. Produce raised by patients and staff lowered the institution's food costs. However, the building projects had little effect in abating the institution's overcrowding by 1896. In response to similar conditions at the State Hospitals in Rochester and Fergus Falls, two new hospitals opened in Hastings and Anoka, Minnesota.

In 1906, the Board of Control, the new body of directors, recommended that patients considered dangerous or criminally insane be placed in a separate building located near one of the mental institutions where they could be given proper care. Legislators agreed and appropriated funds for a facility in St. Peter. By the spring of 1911, four separate institutions existed on the St. Peter campus: the mental hospital, the detention hospital, the hospital for tuberculosis insane, and the newly completed hospital for the criminally insane.

World War I necessitated stringent economic measures. Reductions in food, clothing, and other supplies mean that only the immediate needs of the patients could be satisfied. Inflation and a shortage of labor also affected the hospital, and in 1918, the influenza epidemic caused the death of thirty-two patients and one employee severely impacted the institution's population.

The postwar period brought prosperity, expansion, and new methods of treatment. Even the Great Depression had little negative impact on the institution because the Works Progress Administration provided funds for construction of a needed addition to the hospital's facilities. By the summer of 1939, the Board of Control was abolished and the Division of Public Institutions was created. This division within the Department of Social Security was responsible for the administration of the state's institutions while the remaining duties of the Board of Control were transferred to the Department of Social Welfare. After World War II, the institution continued to expand its facilities and enlarge its staff. By 1972, the St. Peter State Hospital consisted of over sixty buildings.

Historical Information was obtained from the collection and:
Annual Reports of the Board of Trustees and Officers of the Minnesota Hospital for Insane, 1867-1869, 1873, 1876, and 1880.
Biennial Reports of the Board of Trustees and Officers of the Minnesota Hospital for Insane, 1882-1888 and 1890-1896.
Biennial Reports of the Board of Control of State Institutions, 1904, 1906, 1910, 1918, and 1934-1938.
Biennial Reports of the Division of Public Institutions, 1948, 1950, and 1952. Minnesota Legislative Manual, 1941.
First Annual Report of the Board of Trustees and Officers of the Minnesota Hospital for Insane, 1867, p. 4.

Scope and Content:

The St. Peter State Hospital Collection is divided into four series: General Hospital History, 1856-1974; Buildings and Grounds, 1855-1972; Library, 1867-1972; and Volumes, 1866-1952. These papers were originally collected by the institution's librarian, Elizabeth Seaquist. Seaquist's basic organization has been retained.

General Hospital History, 1856-1974: This is the most extensive series within the collection. It contains information on the hospital ranging from newspaper clippings, photographs, correspondence, reports, research notes, newsletters, and numerous other items. Some subjects included are the hospital's centennial celebration, hospital programs, hospital history, and AFSCME strike materials.

Buildings and Grounds, 1855-1972: The buildings and grounds section contains photographs, blueprints, and information about the institution's property and facilities.

Library, 1867-1972: The information about the library pertains exclusively to the library's collections and activities. This section includes numerous photographs of events and individuals along with correspondence and reports.

Volumes, 1866-1952: The volumes contain information regarding the institution's spending proclivities, daily work records, and patient account records in addition to other information.

Restrictions:

There are no restrictions on use of this collection for research purposes. The researcher assumes full responsibility for observing all copyright, property and libel laws as they apply.

Collection Citation:

St. Peter State Hospital, St. Peter, Minnesota. Collection, 1855-1974. SMHC Manuscript Collection 103, Southern Minnesota Historical Center, Memorial Library, Minnesota State University, Mankato.

Acquisition:

St. Peter State Hospital donated this collection in November 1972.

Processed By:

Archive's staff processed this collection in September 1977. Jeff A. Jenson developed the finding aid in April 2002.

Related Collections:

There are similar manuscript collections about St. Peter State Hospital, St. Peter, Minn. available at the Minnesota Historical Society, St. Paul, MN. The collections at the Society are about the Hospital but are different than this specific collection. The Minnesota Historical Society's inventories are available upon request.

LCSH Subject Headings:

St. Peter State Hospital, St. Peter, Minn.
St. Peter State Hospital--History.
Minnesota Hospital for Insane--History.

SMHC Manuscript Collection 103

Box

Folder

General Hospital History, 1856-1974

 

 

“An Evaluation of a Course in Abnormal Psychology for Employees of the St. Peter State Hospital,” by B.P. Grimes, et al., undated

15

4

Bartlett, Cyrus K. “A Brief History of the Minnesota Hospitals for Insane,” 1893

3

7

Biennial Reports, 1890, 1896, and 1900

10

3

Biennial Reports of the Superintendent , 1904-1910

31

9

Biographies, Letters, and Photographs, undated

19

4

Centennial, Correspondence, 1966

18

3

Centennial, Miscellaneous, Newspaper Clippings and Programs, 1966

18

4

Centennial, Photographs, 1966

18

5

Centennial, Photographs, 1966

18

6

Centennial, Photographs, 1966

18

7

Centennial, Registry Book, 6-10 September 1966

19

1

Centennial, Singers, 1966

19

2

Centennial, Speakers, 1966

19

3

“Concepts of Psychopathy: A Review of the Professional Literature on Psychopathic Personalities,” by Robert F. Jesness, 1952

26

1

Correspondence, 1862-1870 (Photocopies)

4

1

Correspondence, 1864-June1866

4

2

Correspondence, July 1866-February 1870

4

3

Correspondence, 1870-1884

4

4

Correspondence, 1885-1889

4

5

Correspondence, 1890-1891

4

6

Correspondence, 1892

5

1

Correspondence, 1893

5

2

Correspondence, 1894-1895

5

3

Correspondence, 1896-August 1898

5

4

Correspondence, undated and September 1898-1899

5

5

Correspondence, 1900-1902

6

1

Correspondence, 1903-1905

6

2

Correspondence, 1906

6

3

Correspondence, 1907

6

4

Correspondence, January-July1908

6

6

Correspondence, August-December 1908

7

1

Correspondence, 1909-June 1912

7

2

Correspondence, August 1912-1913

7

3

Correspondence, 1914-1915

7

4

Correspondence, 1916-1919

7

5

Correspondence, 1920-1921

7

7

Correspondence, 1922-1930

8

1

Correspondence, 1931-1942

8

2

Correspondence, 1950-1959

8

3

Correspondence, 1960-1969

8

4

Diploma, John O. Hoglund, 1894

Oversize

1

Hospital Programs, 1946-1960

15

7

Hospital Programs, 1961-1963

16

1

Hospital Programs, 1964-1969

16

2

Industrial Therapy, Miscellaneous Publications, 1959

15

6

Insurance Policies, 1867-1876

8

7

Insurance Policies, 1896

9

1

Insurance Policies, 1896

9

2

“Laundry Survey,” May 1954

30

5

“Manual of Industrial and Occupational Therapy,” undated

30

7

“Mental Health Newsletter,” Minnesota Department of Public Welfare, 1963-1968

26

6

Miscellaneous, Hospital Publications, 1943-1968

31

1

Miscellaneous, Papers, 1869-1891

4

7

Miscellaneous, Papers, 1892-1899

5

6

Miscellaneous, Papers, 1900-1907

6

5

Miscellaneous, Papers, 1908-1919

7

6

Miscellaneous, Papers, 1929-1969

8

5

Monthly Reports, 1920-1958

10

4

“Murder Under Twenty One: A Study of Juveniles Admitted to the Asylum for the Dangerous Insane Following Homicidal Assault,” October 1947

31

10

“The New Era,” Script, undated

16

3

Newspaper Clippings, 1878-1895

19

5

Newspaper Clippings, 1915-1949

19

6

Newspaper Clippings, 1950-1951

20

2

Newspaper Clippings, 1952-August 1954

20

3

Newspaper Clippings, September 1954-1956

20

4

Newspaper Clippings, 1957-August 1958

20

5

Newspaper Clippings, September 1958-June 1959

21

1

Newspaper Clippings, July-October 1959

21

2

Newspaper Clippings, November 1959-Febraury 1960

21

3

Newspaper Clippings, March-June 1960

21

4

Newspaper Clippings, July-December 1960

21

5

Newspaper Clippings, January-June 1961

22

1

Newspaper Clippings, July-December 1961

22

2

Newspaper Clippings, January-May 1962

22

3

Newspaper Clippings, June-October 1962

22

4

Newspaper Clippings, November 1962-April 1963

22

5

Newspaper Clippings, May-October 1963

23

1

Newspaper Clippings, November-December 1963

23

2

Newspaper Clippings, February 1963 (Investigation)

23

3

Newspaper Clippings, March-May 1963 (Investigation)

23

4

Newspaper Clippings, June-August 1963

23

5

Newspaper Clippings, January-April 1964

24

1

Newspaper Clippings, May-November 1964

24

2

Newspaper Clippings, December 1964-June 1965

24

3

Newspaper Clippings, June-December 1965

24

4

Newspaper Clippings, January-September 1966

25

1

Newspaper Clippings, October-December 1966

25

2

Newspaper Clippings, January-June 1967

25

3

Newspaper Clippings, July-December 1967

25

4

Newspaper Clippings, January 1968-June 1969

25

5

Newspaper Clippings, Scrapbook, ca. 1948

20

1

Patients Pay and Allowance Advisory Committee, Booklet, ca. May 1968

25

6

“Phelps Hall Stairway Traffic Survey,” December 1954

30

6

Photograph Album, 1950-1954

17

1

Photographs Miscellaneous, 1950-1954

17

2

Photographs, People, 1894-1898

16

6

Photographs, People and Events, 1955-1957

17

3

Photographs, People and Events, 1958-1959

17

4

Photographs, People and Events, 1960-1961

17

5

Photographs, People and Events, 1962

17

6

Photographs, People and Events, 1962

17

7

Photographs, People and Events, 1963-1965

18

1

Photographs, People and Events, 1965-1966

18

2

Photographs, People and Grounds, 1930-1938

16

7

Photographs, People, Places and Events, 1940-1949

16

8

Publications, Miscellaneous, 1927-1959

16

4

Publications, Miscellaneous, 1939-1965

26

2

Publications, Miscellaneous, 1960-1969

16

5

Publications, Miscellaneous, Related to Mental Health Institutions, 1944-1950

26

7

Publications, Miscellaneous, Related to Mental Health Institutions, 1951-1968

26

8

Quarterly and Annual Reports, 1888-1891

9

5

Quarterly and Annual Reports, 1892-1895

9

6

Quarterly and Annual Reports, 1896-April 1899

10

1

Quarterly and Annual Reports, July 1899-1901

10

2

“The Recreator,” 1938-1949

12

4

“The Recreator,” 1950-1951 and “The Voice of Patience,” 1950

12

5

“Recreator,” 1952-1953

12

6

“Recreator,” 1954-1955 and “Information Issue,” 1953-1955 and 1866-1954

13

1

“Recreator” and “MSH Eagle,” January-May 1963

14

4

“Recreator” and “MSH Eagle,” June-December 1963

14

5

“Recreator” and “MSH Eagle,” January-August 1964

14

6

“Recreator” and “MSH Eagle,” September 1964-September 1965

15

1

“Recreator,” “MSH Eagle,” and “Notes from the Remot’s,” October 1965-February 1967

15

2

“Recreator,” “MSH Eagle,” and “Notes from the Remot’s,” March 1967-April 1969

15

3

“Recreator” and “The Voice of Patients,” May 1956-June 1958

13

2

“Recreator,” “The Voice of Patients,” and “The Eagle,” July 1958-March 1959

13

3

“Recreator,” “The Voice of Patients,” “MSH Eagle,” April-December 1959

13

4

“Recreator,” “The Voice of Patients,” “MSH Eagle,” November 1961-April 1962

14

2

“Recreator,” “The Voice of Patients,” “MSH Eagle,” May-December 1962

14

3

“Report,” Minnesota Security Hospital, 5 March 1964 and “An Introduction to St. Peter State Hospital Minnesota’s Oldest Hospital for the Mentally Ill,” 11 March 1964

15

5

Reports, Alcohol and Drugs, 1969-1970

24

5

Research Notes, 1856-1868

1

1

Research Notes, 1869-1871

1

2

Research Notes, 1872-March 1874

1

3

Research Notes, April 1874-1875

1

4

Research Notes, 1876-1877

1

5

Research Notes, January-May 1878

2

1

Research Notes, June 1878-1 January 1879

2

2

Research Notes, 8 January-February 1879

2

3

Research Notes, March-December 1879

2

4

Research Notes, 1880

2

5

Research Notes, 1881

2

6

Research Notes, 1882

3

1

Research Notes, 1883

3

2

Research Notes, 1884-1899

3

3

Research Notes, 1901-1902

3

4

Research Notes, 1921-1939 and Newspaper Summary 1930-1940, undated

3

5

Research Notes, 1954-1964

3

6

Research Papers, “ St. Peter State Hospital, 1865-1909” and “St. Peter State Hospital, 1866-1961” by Elizabeth Seaquist, undated and 1961

3

8

Speeches, by Governor Luther W. Youngdahl, 1948 and Director of Division of Public Institutions Carl J. Jackson, 1948?

3

9

“St. Peter State Hospital News,” 1958-January 1959

10

5

“St. Peter State Hospital News,” February-July 1959

10

6

“St. Peter State Hospital News,” August-December 1959

10

7

“St. Peter State Hospital News,” January-July 1960

11

1

“St. Peter State Hospital News,” August 1960-January 1961

11

2

“St. Peter State Hospital News,” February-September 1961

11

3

“St. Peter State Hospital News,” October 1961-1962

11

4

“St. Peter State Hospital News,” 1963

11

5

St. Peter State Hospital, Women’s Department. Rules for the Governance of Sub-ordinate Officers and Nurses. 1895.

31

8

“Story of St. Peter State Hospital,” by Dr. G.H. Freeman, undated

20

6

“Strike Plan,” 1 November 1974

19

7

“The Voice of Patients” and “MSH Eagle,” January-July 1960

13

5

“The Voice of Patients” and “MSH Eagle,” August 1960-February 1961

13

6

“The Voice of Patients” and “MSH Eagle,” March-October 1961

14

1

Vouchers and Receipts, 1866-October 1869

8

6

Vouchers and Receipts, November 1869-1880

9

3

Vouchers and Wood Contracts, 1882-1884

9

4

“Weekly Bulletin,” Minnesota Department of Public Welfare, 1957-October 1959

26

3

“Weekly Bulletin,” Minnesota Department of Public Welfare, November 1959-1961

26

4

“Weekly Bulletin,” Minnesota Department of Public Welfare, November 1962-1969

26

5

Weekly Menus, 1951-1953 and 1961-1962

11

6

Weekly Menus, 1963-1965

12

1

Weekly Menus, 1966-1968

12

2

Weekly Schedules, 1962-1966

12

3

Buildings and Grounds, 1855-1972

 

 

Asylum for the Dangerous Insane, Notes, Correspondence, Clippings, and Photographs, 1890-1909

27

1

Blue Prints and Map, 1910-1966

Oversize

2

Employees Residence, Stewards Office, and Laundry, Notes and Photographs, 1890-1964

27

2

Ewing House, Notes and Photograph, 1855-1936 ( Temporary Hospital)

27

3

Geriatrics, Psychopathic Building, Bartlett Hall, Pexton Hall, Phelps Hall, Shantz Hall, and Tomlinson Rehabilitation Center, Notes, Clippings, and Photographs, 1936-1972

27

4

Miscellaneous, Buildings, Grounds, and Utility Building, Notes and Photographs, 1870-1967

27

5

North and Sough Flats, Recreational Building, Cottage X, Detached Ward North and South, and Detention Hospital, Notes, Correspondence, Clippings, and Photographs, 1869-1967

27

6

Permanent Hospital , Notes, Correspondence, and Photographs, 1867-1967

27

7

Library, 1867-1972

 

 

Clippings from Hospital Publications, 1940-1962

29

5

Clippings from Hospital Publications, 1963-1967

30

1

Correspondence, 1891-1915

28

1

Correspondence, 1916-1959

28

2

Correspondence, 1960-1965

28

3

Correspondence, 1966-1972

28

4

Miscellaneous, Institutional Library Materials, 1909-1940s

31

3

Miscellaneous, Institutional Library Materials, 1953-1968

31

4

Miscellaneous, Institutional Library Materials, 1971-1972

31

5

Monthly Activities, 1950-1964

29

4

Monthly Reports, 1909-1945

29

1

Monthly Reports, 1946-1951

29

2

Monthly Reports, 1952-1959

29

3

Newspaper Clippings, 1915-1972

30

4

Photographs, 1930-1962

30

2

Photographs, 1963-1968

30

3

Quarterly , State Board of Control, 1908-1920

31

6

Quarterly , State Board of Control, 1927-1936

31

7

Research Notes, 1867-1950

28

5

Research Notes, 1951-1972

28

6

“Survey of the St. Peter State Hospital Library,” Dorothy Waddingham, May 1966

31

2

Volumes, 1866-1952

 

Volume

Account Book (steward), 1875

34

11

Account Book (steward), 1881-1883

34

12

Building and Current Expense Ledger, 1866-1873

 

32

Building Expense Ledger, 1874-1879

 

33

Check Record (steward), 1874

34

10

Criminal Ward Patient Accounts, 1916-1930

 

48

Current Expenses Ledger, 1888-1889

33

20

Current Expenses Ledger, 1890-1891

33

21

Current Expenses Ledger, 1892-1893

33

22

Current Expenses Ledger, 1894-1895

33

23

Current Expenses Ledger, 1895-1896

32

24

Current Expenses Ledger, 1898-1899

32

25

Daily Dietary Record, 1879-1890

 

46

Daily Dietary Record, 1886

 

47

Daily Expense Journal, 1866-1873

 

26

Daily Expense Journal, 1875-1880

 

27

Daily Expense Journal, 1880-1883

 

28

Daily Expense Journal, 1884-1887

 

29

Daily Expense Journal, 1887-1888

 

30

Daily Record of Meat Consumption, 1877-1878

34

14

Daily Work Record (carpenters and patients), 1905-1909

34

5

Daily Work Record (carpenters and patients), 1909-1911

34

6

Daily Work Record (carpenters and patients), 1913-1915

34

7

Daily Work Record (carpenters and patients), 1918-1919

34

8

Daily Work Record (carpenters and patients), 1922-1924

34

9

Expense Book (wood purchased), 1885

34

16

Expense Book (food and kitchen supplies), 1884

34

17

Expense Book (food and kitchen supplies), 1886-1887

34

18

Expense Record, 1884-1894

 

19

Furniture and Furnishings Ledger, 1903-1912

 

34

Journal, 1873-1876

 

35

Journal, 1876-1879

 

36

Library Inventory, 1888

34

4

Monthly Expense Book, 1867-1878

34

15

Monthly Expense Record, Property Evaluation, 1901-1925

 

31

Patient Accounts Ledger (men), 1916-1930

 

49

Patient Accounts Ledger (men), 1921-1930

 

50

Patient Accounts Ledger (women), 1908-1930

 

51

Patients Ledger Record, 1867-1878

 

45

Petty Cashbook (steward), 1890-1896

34

13

Reports of the Visiting Board, 1867-1885

34

2

Reports of Dr. Bartlett to the Governors, 1868-1887

34

3

State of Minnesota Fire Protection Survey, St. Peter State Hospital, 1952

34

1

Time Record, 1913-1919

 

44

Treasurer’s Voucher Record, 1885-1890

 

37

Voucher Record, 1882-1885

 

38

Voucher Record, 1885-1888

 

39

Voucher Record, 1891-1894

 

40

Voucher Record, 1894-1897

 

41

Voucher Record, 1897-1900

 

42

Voucher Record, 1900-1902

 

43