|Source: Boston Traveler (Boston, MA) Page: 2
Dated: November 29, 1844
There is no insane asylum in the state of Mississippi among
|Source: Augusta Chronicle (Augusta, GA) Volume: XXX
Issue: 126 Page: 2
Dated: Friday, Aug. 10, 1866
MISSISSIPPI LUNATIC ASYLUM - Gov. Humphrey, of
Mississippi reports to Gen. Howard that the Insane Asylum
of that State is so crowded that he is daily compelled to refuse
admission to white citizens, and is therefore unable to provide
for the imbecile blacks. The reverses of the war
subsequent to the bankruptcy of the people and present
sufferings for food and clothing, are thought to be the reasons
for this increase of lunacy.
|Source: Cincinnati Daily Gazette - Ohio
Dated: Dec. 28, 1869
The Rev. John SAMPLE, of the
Methodist Episcopal Church, South, in Mississippi, having looked
over the recent election returns in that State, calls for a day
of fasting and prayer, to petition that the hand of affliction
may be moved from the people of Mississippi.
|Source: San Francisco Bulletin - California
Dated: Dec. 29, 1869
In View of the result of the recent
election, an un reconstructed clergyman in Mississippi, Rev.
John SAMPLE, of the Methodist Episcopal Church South, has
recommended to the people of that State that they observe
Thursday, Jan. 14th, as a day of fasting and prayer to God to
relieve them from the hand of the oppressor, that "their
afflictions may be removed or rendered tolerable."
|Source: Norwich Aurora (Norwich, CT) Volume:
XXXVI Issue: 20 Page: 2
Dated: Wednesday, May 18, 1870
An exchange says:
"Gov. Alcorn, of Mississippi, has sent a special
message to the State Legislature in regard to the plea of
insanity in trials for murder, manslaughter, and assaults with
intent to kill. He recommends that in all cases in which
that plea is interposed, the question shall be tried in equity,
the prisoner to be held in custody meanwhile, without bail, to
await the decree. If the decree shall be that the prisoner
is sane, he shall then be tried, as such, for the crime
committed; but if he shall order him to be confined in a lunatic
asylum, and in that portion thereof designated for the
'dangerous insane.' In the case of assault with intent to
kill, this confinement shall be for the term of one year; in
case of manslaughter for the term of three years, and in a case
of murder for a period of five years."
This, as can be seen at once, does not meet the case.
A man may be insane when he commits the act of murder, as it is
claimed McFarland was; and the jury endorsed that claim
by their verdict. But no one claims that McFarland
is insane now. So with the perpetrator of any other
murder, where the claim of insanity is set up. The
insanity is at the time of the commission of the act; when under
trial, the man is, or is supposed to be, sane. If he were
not, his trial would be a farce; for who ever heard of trying a
notoriously insane man for a crime?
It is meant that the point shall be first determined
whether the murderer was sane at the time of the murder,
and, if he was, that he shall be tried, and, if convicted,
punished, no one can object to that, provided the man continues
sane up to the time of his trial and punishment. But this
Mississippi Governor proposes the punish a man who was insane at
the time of the murder, but who may be sane now, by
sending him to a lunatic asylum, to be confined among "the
dangerous insane," - a course of treatment, one would suppose,
very well calculated to make a man insane if he was not so
|Source: Cincinnati Daily Gazette (Cincinnati, OH)
Dated: Saturday, Sept. 3, 1870
Notice to Builders
SEALED PROPOSALS will be received
by the committee appointed by the Legislature of the State of
Mississippi, under and by virtue of "an act to provide for the
repairs of and additional buildings to the Mississippi State
Lunatic Asylum." approved July 21st, 1870, until 12 o'clock, M.,
on TUESDAY, the 6th day of September next, for the erection of
two new wings to the State Lunatic Asylum. Each of said
wings to be one hundred and forty-eight feet long by thirty nine
feet wide, and to be three stories high. Said wings to be
built of bricks, cemented on the outside, and covered with a
Plans and specifications will be on file at the room of
the committee, in the State Capitol, in the City of Jackson,
Mississippi, on and after the 22d day of August, inst., where
they can be examined by all who desire to see them.
Bond and security will be required for the faithful
performance of the work. Each bidder to accompany his bid
with the names of sureties.
The committee reserves the right to reject any or all
bids, at their discretion.
J. L. ALCORN,
Governor and ex-officio Chairman
Attest: JOS. BENNETT, Secretary, &c.
|Source: Daily Commercial (Vicksburg, MS) Pages: 2
Dated: Monday, Feb. 25, 1878
SUPERINTENDENT OF THE LUNATIC ASYLUM.
From a long list of able and worthy applicants the
Governor has appointed Dr. T. J. Mitchell, of this city,
Superintendent of the Lunatic Asylum. Dr.
Mitchell's qualifications, in every particular, are of the
highest order. He is thoroughly educated in his
profession, and brings to his medical learning the experience of
a long and laborious practice. To these qualifications he
combines executive ability, and a humane and generous nature.
Nothing that study and conscientious effort can accomplish to
promote the comfort and effect the cure of the unfortunate
beings entrusted to his care, will be left undone. We feel
it our duty to give these assurances with the utmost confidence
to the public, and especially to the immediate friends of the
inmates of the institution. Politically, Dr. Mitchell
is a thorough Democrat, whose every hope and aspirations are
centered in the State of Mississippi, with which his fortunes
have been identified from boyhood down to the present hour.
- Jackson Clarion
It affords us pleasure to add our testimony as to the
eminent fitness of Dr. Mitchell, for the responsible
position assigned him by the Governor and the Senate. He
is a thorough, manly gentleman, and his qualifications are
unquestioned. It will doubtless be gratifying to those who
affected to regard Dr. Compton, as the only man in the
State competent to manage the Asylum for the Insane, to learn
that Dr. McWillie, who has been for several years the
very efficient, and capable assistant of Dr. Compton,
will continue to hold the position for which his attainments and
experience admirably qualify him.
|Source: Clarion (Jackson, MS) Volume: XLIX Issue:
11 Page: 2
Dated: Wednesday, Mar. 17, 1886
The State's Charitable Institutions.
The Joint Committee to Investigate the State's
Charitable Institutions have made an interesting report, in some
particulars not very creditable to the management of the East
Mississippi Insane Asylum.
Concerning this Institution the Committee report that
its affairs are not conducted on business principles.
The expenditures have been extravagant and the prices
paid excessive. The trustees exercise no oversight over
the affairs of the institution, but simply act as an auditing
The accounts are not kept in a business-like manner,
and the Committee recommend that the system of bookkeeping
practiced at the Lunatic Asylum at Jackson be adopted.
The Steward has paid his private accounts out of State
funds; "but in every instance except one - and in that the
account has not as yet been passed upon by the trustees - the
proper amount was refunded before the investigation was ordered
by the Legislature." The Committee "do not commend" this
action of the Steward in mingling his private matters with those
which were official.
The purchase made by the Steward for the Asylum were
injudicious and the prices extravagant. Pianos, accordeons
and lace curtains were purchased and paid for out of the
"Support Fund," when it must have been apparent that this fund
was about exhausted.
"The action of the trustees in the selection of a
Steward was not business-like. He is unskilled in the
duties of the position for which he was selected - without
commercial experience and knowledge; and this is the testimony
of the majority of the business men at Meridian - who were
examined. We think the trustees erred in their selection,
and much of the management is due to this mistake on their
The Asylum pays farm laborers $15 a month and boards
The cost per patient is $227 a year against $135 at the
Lunatic Asylum here.
In pleasing contrast with the Committee's strictures on
the East Mississippi Lunatic Asylum is the highly commendatory
manner in which they speak of the State Lunatic Asylum at this
place. Here everything is lovely - just as it should be.
Not a single improvement is suggested in the management.
The articles purchased are such as are needed, and the prices
paid most reasonable. The books are properly kept, and the
system of book-keeping at the Asylum is recommended as the
standard for all the State Charitable Institutions. Dr.
Mitchell the Superintendent, and Dr. McWillie his
assistant are especially complimented by name, and Steward
McGill has been so faithful over the affairs of the one
institution, that he is recommended by the Committee as a
suitable person to act as purchasing agent for all.
The general management of the Deaf and Dumb Asylum is
reported to be good; but the system of book-keeping employed is
not business like. Too much has been paid for many of the
articles purchased. The cost per capita annually is $200.
This the Committee think this too much.
The management of the Blind Asylum is also reported to
be good, and purchases have been made at moderate prices.
The cost per capita is $300, which the Committee, think can be
reduced. There are only 33 pupils, though the building is
capable of accommodating many more.
|Source: Clarion (Jackson, MS) Volume: 49 Issue: 46
Dated: Nov. 17, 1886
Jackson as a Market
The esteemed Meridian News has been engaged for
some time in boosting the claims of the capital of the "Mighty
East," which is right enough; and in doing so it not
infrequently makes good natured comparisons between Meridian and
other towns in the State, but always to the advantage of
At a recent meeting of the Board of Trustees of the
State Lunatic Asylum at this place, the purchasing agent
submitted certain bids he had received for the privilege of
furnishing the Asylum with its supplies for the third quarter of
the current year, and though there were bids from several cities
outside the State, the contract was awarded to merchants
residing in the city of Jackson. We quote the bids
accepted as follows:
|2 bales standard 4-4 brown
|2 bales 8 oz. Lowels
|50 sacks prime Rio Coffee
|25 sacks prime Rio Coffee
|1000 pounds C. R. bacon
|5000 pounds dry salt pork
|179 bbls. roller process
flower first quality (per barrel)
|Sugar cured hams
|10 sacks fine salt (per
|5 bbls. rice
|1 sack black pepper
|Apple cider vinegar (per
|5 tons bran (per hundred)
|6 tons ship stuff (per
The prices quoted are for the yard
or pound of the article named, and the figures represent cents
and fractional parts unless otherwise specially indicated.
The contract was closed on Wednesday of last week.
Now if the News can show that Meridian has sold
goods of the kind mentioned to the East Mississippi Insane
Asylum at as low prices as Jackson has sold to the State Lunatic
Asylum, we will be in the humor to acknowledge the superiority
of Meridian over Jackson as a market. The tax-payers of
the State would be interested in a comparison of the figures.
In this connection we take the opportunity to commend
the admirable management of the State Lunatic Asylum, in all its
departments, and especially in that presided over by Steward
McGill, who is the purchasing agent for the institution, and
is the right man in the right place.
|Source: Clarion Ledger (Jackson, MS) Volume: 53
Issue: Page: 4
Dated: Thursday, Jan. 30, 1809
Dr. Mitchell, in his report as Superintendent of
the State Lunatic Asylum, takes strong ground against the
proposition to establish a separate Asylum for the colored
insane. The Doctor also discussed the subject in a paper
read at the last meeting of the State Medical Association.
On the other hand, Dr. C. A. Rice,
Superintendent of the East Mississippi Insane Asylum, comes to
the conclusion that "it would be wise to furnish another Asylum
for the negroes, and separate the races." He estimates
that there are three hundred insane negroes in Mississippi, and
thinks that is not only necessary, but that it would be economy
to erect an Asylum with capacity for five hundred patients.
The Committees on Humane and Benevolent Institutions
will of course give this subject due consideration, and make
such provision as will relieve the jails of scores of
unfortunates who cannot be admitted to either Asylum for want of
|Source: Biloxi Herald (Biloxi, MS) Volume: VIII
Issue: 22 Page 1
Dated: Saturday, Feb. 27, 1892
INSURANCE ON STATE BUILDINGS
Since the fire at the lunatic asylum, some of our confreres
of the press are urging that policies of insurance should be
taken on all state buildings.
We do not see it that way. There is a profit, and
a large one, to the insurer. That is the way insurance
companies make their money. They pay their agents a big
commission, and have a good profit left. It may be good or
bad policy for individuals to insure against fire. It is a
mere matter of calculation of the cost. One man may be
able to take his own risk and another not. The same rule
should apply to the state. Can the state of Mississippi
afford to take its own risk on its public buildings?
We think it can. The capitol and other public
buildings have been standing for more than half a century, the
first loss has been that of the Jackson lunatic asylum, and if
the cost of insurance on all buildings for the last forty years
should be computed at the regular rates, it will be found to be
much in excess of the value of the asylum.
The state of Mississippi is able to carry its own
insurance, and let it be so.
|Source: Times-Picayune (New Orleans, LA) Page: 16
Dated: Monday, July 6, 1896
EAST MISSISSIPPI INSANE ASYLUM.
Established in 1882, the Lunatic Asylum Being Full.
Brief History of Its Successful and Capable Management.
How Patients, Male and Female, Are Occupied
Dr. Buchanan, the Able Superintendent, is the Right man in
the Right place.
(Special to the Picayune.)
Meridian, Miss, July 5 -- In 1882, the state lunatic
asylum being already full and not capable of accommodating all
the insane in the state, the legislature made another asylum.
As an inducement to locate it at Meridian, the city of Meridian
donated a site, with 560 acres of land. A commission was
immediately appointed, by Governor Lowry and the lands
were acepted, and as soon as everything could be got in
shape, the building was commenced, but the commissioners found
that they were somewhat handicapped, inasmuch as the law said
they should erect a building to accommodate 250 patients, with
only $50,000. All estimates submitted went beyond these
figures, but the committee, taking certain responsibilities upon
themselves let the contract to Mr. G. W. Covert,
promising to ask the next legislature tro make good the deficit.
The building was not completed before the next legislature met
in 18874, and at this session the commissioners submitted their
report, and asked for enough money to finish the work according
to the plans submitted. After quite a fight over the
matter, an additional appropriation of $34,000 (m/b $31,000) for
finishing the building, and $25,000 for furnishing and equipping
it was made.
The work was completed in December, 1884, and on Jan.
12, 1885, the asylum was opened for the reception of patients,
with Dr. C. A. Rice as superintendent and Dr. J. M.
Buchanan as assistant physician. The jails were then
full of insane people, and it was but a short time before the
asylum had its full quota of patients.
Since the organization there have been 1127 patients
admitted to the asylum, and a summary found in the last biennial
report shows the following results: About 30 per cent were
discharged as restored, 25 per cent were either benefited or
became harmless, and were removed by relatives; 20 per cent
died, and the remaining 25 percent were still in the asylum.
There has been no discrimination made, and all were taken as
long as there was room, so with no restrictions as to
admissions, these figures compare favorably with like
institutions. It is said that many patients are not sent
to the asylum until it is too late to benefit them by treatment,
but where they are sent as soon as the trouble first appears,
the results are very satisfactory when the grave nature of the
disease is taken into consideration. We find that the
physicians do not rely entirely upon drugs in the treatment of
mental troubles, but they put great stress upon diet, exercise,
and diversions. They try to find some kind of employment
for all who can do anything, and in many ways try to give the
patients something to think about except their real or imaginary
Many of the men are from the country, and these are
employed on the farm and garden, while others find something
they can do in the shops, such as cabinet work, mattress making,
and other industries. The women do lots of fancy work, and
many find employment in knitting, sewing and household works.
The grounds in front of the main building are
beautifully terraced, and laid out in flower beds - all done by
the patients and the yards are still kept in order by them.
What is now a really beautiful lawn was, at the time of the
building of the asylum, an old pine field, but time and labor
has wrought a wonderful change.
Speaking of improvements, it is safe to say that with
the additions made from time to time and improvements added from
year to year the property and buildings of the asylum are worth
twice what they were when the building was first completed.
All machinery, including boilers, engines, dynamos, electric
lights, fire engine and laundry are first class and complete.
The farming land is rolling and hilly, but it is kept in a fine
state of cultivation, affording an abundant supply of vegetables
for the patients, and the field crops, consisting of corn, oats,
hay, potatoes and peas, have usually been good. There is
also a nice herd of graded Jerseys, with a few full-blooded
cows, which supply the asylum with enough milk for all the sick,
and those needing special nourishment. They don't go in
for breeding fine hogs, but have a good drove of common hogs.
The legislature allows for the support of this asylum
$130 per patient, which amount covers everything in the way of
expense, but for the last four years the per capita expenditure
has not reached that amount.
There have been only two superintendents since the
opening of the asylum. Dr. Rice served five years
and Dr. Buchanan, the present superintendent, has been in
charge a little over six years. Dr. Buchanan served
two years as assistant physician in the Arkansas lunatic asylum
and two years under Dr. Rice here, so when he entered
upon the duties of superintendent he was familiar with the
workings of hte institution. The doctor is progressive and
has many other improvements in view. He has just completed
a new addition, in which is a large dining hall, where all the
mild and convalescent patients will take their meals. The
old dining-rooms will be converted into associated dormitories,
and this will give room for about fifty more patients.
Just above the dining-room is a large hall, which is used for a
chapel and general assembly hall. The water supply has not
been as good as desired, and a contract for boring an artesian
well has been let to a New Orleans firm; this well is guaranteed
to furnish 100,000 gallons of good water per day. A water
tower high enough to give sufficient pressure to throw water in
any part of the building is also under consideration, but no
action will be taken on that until the well is completed.
These are some of the points briefly outlined of this
splendidly-managed institution. The Picayune correspondent
will add, in conclusion, that the new board of trustees - K.
Threefoot, E. T. George and J. F. Parker of
Ellisville - are all good men and the harmony with the
|Source: Daily Herald (Biloxi, MS) Volume: 1 Issue:
171 Page: 1
Dated: Tuesday, Feb. 28, 1899
Six Cases in the Mississippi Lunatic Asplum
Jackson, Miss., Feb. 27 - County
Health Officer McLean today reported to the State Board of
Health six cases of small-pox near the lunatic asylum, north of
this city. The board of health has ordered compulsory
vaccination of all persons in the neighborhood. The state
lunatic asylum contains 900 inmates and a quarantine was
|Source: Gulfport Daily Herald (Gulfport, MS) Vol:
II Issue: 153 Page: 1
Dated: Saturday, Mar. 5, 1911
State Lunatic Asylum Crowded.
LUNATIC ASYLUM CROWED
There are about seventy lunatics mostly negroes, in
the various jails of the state, in excess of the accommodations
of the two insane hospitals, which are full. As vacancies
occur from death or restoration to reason, other inmates are
admitted in the order in which their applications are filed.
Where a person is adjudged a lunatic by a jury or by two
physicians and a citizen, notice should be given to the
superintendent of the lunatic asylum and along with the notice a
certified copy of the judgment of lunacy, or of the affidavit of
the two physicians, and the citizen, and thereupon the
superintendent will send the sheriff or the jail physician
blanks to be filled out, giving certain information in regard to
the lunatic, necessary for the treatment and which is required
|Source: Advocate (Baton Rouge, LA) Page: 2
Dated: Feb. 7, 1930
Tramp Murderer Is Found to Be Escape Lunatic
Finger Prints Definitely Identify Man - Jackson Police Say
He Is 'Dangerous.'
By Associated Press
Paducah, Ky., Feb. 6 - Police authorities of Jackson,
Miss., informed Fulton county officers today that the identity
of Roy Springer, a trump, who killed Frank Barrett,
Fulton merchant, and seriously wounded Bulley Huddleston,
chief of police of Fulton, had been established through finger
prints as that of a man whom Jackson officers had taken to a
Mississippi insane asylum last week.
In a telephone conversation with Sheriff Goalder
Johnson, Fulton county, the Jackson chief of police said
that two of his men last week took a man by the name of Roy
Springler, who answered the description furnished by the
Kentucky officers, to the asylum but that the institution
refused to receive him and that they left him standing in the
corridor. That was the last they saw of him.
The Mississippi official told Sheriff Johnson
that they were dealing with a highly dangerous man. He
said that Springer had been picked up on the streets of
Jackson and had been taken to the asylum from which institution
he was alleged to have escaped. He had been in the asylum
on several previous occasions, the Jackson chief said, having
been sent up from Tupelo, Miss.
The condition of Chief Huddleston, whose
throat was cut by the tramp at Fulton, Tuesday, showed
improvement this afternoon.
|Source: Gulfport Daily Herald (Gulfport, MS)
Volume: IV Issue: 254 Page: 5
Dated: Monday, July 28, 1913
MORE SENSATIONS IN PROBE OF MISSISSIPPI ASYLUM EXPECTED
Jackson, July 23.
The legislature investigating committee has hardly
begun its work, and yet it has given results that are of
interest and has considerably more in sight, its members say.
The only conviction so far is Leigh Watkins, assistant
land commissioner, who confessed to embezzling $320 as soon as
he found that the expert accountants were checking up the
auditor's office. He repaid the money and was given a
sentence of one year in jail. He declares he never was
paid sympathy of the public because of his straitened
circumstances, that petitions for his pardon are even now being
circulated and largely signed.
Tom Turley, steward at the lunatic asylum, has
been indicted four times and there does not seem to be any
escape for him. The main witness against him, a well known
character about town, named Walter Weathersby, left the
city as soon as the committee got in behind Turley, but
after a protracted search the police found him in hiding in
Pearl river swamps, across Jackson, and landed him in Jail.
He declares he never was paid but $25 by Turley, and that
was his salary for the month he worked at the asylum. And
yet Turley is said to have paid him nearly $2,000.
Turley demanded a change of venue, being of the opinion
he could not get a fair trial. in this county, and the court
agreed with him, sending the case to Rankin county.
PROBE NOT ENDED.
Only one member of the board of trustees of the asylum,
W. S. Hamilton, was indicted by the grand jury. Now
that the grand jury has adjourned it is understood that
affidavits will be made before a justice of the peace against
certain others connected with the asylum and have them turned
over to the next grand jury. Other minor employes also are
expected to be hauled over the coals for petty stealing.
There seem to have been going on in a wholesale way for years.
|Source: CNN News -
Dated: March 9, 2014
MENTIONS: A massive graveyard was discovered on the
grounds of the University of Mississippi.
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