Neal Miller of Dilworth, MN sent in these beautiful photos of the Fergus Falls Regional Treatment Center, formerly Fergus Falls State Hospital — an asylum. Neal’s comments accompany some of the photos below.
After sliding toward destruction for years, a developer has been found and this place will be renovated. Update: as of October 2014, the future of the Kirkbride is again in question.
MPR has a nice article on the FFRTC here.
Built at the turn of the last century, the Fergus Falls Insane Asylum, later given the more politically correct name “Fergus Falls Regional Treatment Center”, is one of the last surviving “Kirkbride Asylums”
Dr. Thomas Story Kirkbride’s buildings were grand Victorian monoliths, usually dominating the surrounding countryside from some prominent hilltop.
An imposing sight even now, it must have seemed even more forbidding to those who came here against their will
More on Kirkbride buildings can be found here.
Kirkbride believed that fresh air and sunshine were the best treatments for mental illness, and thus no patient was denied a room with a window…
This, however, did have its drawbacks, as at least one patient is known to have leaped to his death from the upper floor of this ward.
Photos and captions by Neal Miller of Dilworth, MN. Part two in this series is here.