Archive for March, 2011

South Carolina State Hospital- part 2

Here are more photos from the South Carolina State Hospital,  Babcock building, focusing more on artifacts and details than my previous post.

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South Mountain Sanatorium, historic photos

Several weeks ago I had the great opportunity to shoot the former children’s preventorium at South Mountain Sanatorium (formerly known as both the Mont Alto State Sanatorium, PA State Sanitorium No. 1, and the City of Hope) in Mont Alto, Pennsylvania. I’ll be composing a full blog post on the photos later (one is posted here) but in the meantime I figured I’d share some scans of historic photos of the campus. I’ve actually linked these images to larger versions, so please click on them to open a larger version.

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South Carolina State Hospital- Babcock Building


This is the Babcock building at South Carolina State Hospital, formerly known as the South Carolina Lunatic Asylum, as a few remaining documents in the building testify to. Created in the style of the Kirkbride buildings, while not actually being a Kirk itself, the Babcock building’s admin is the second oldest building on the grounds, while its still active Mills building is not only on the National Historic Landmark, but has the honor of being “The oldest building in the country to be used continuously as a mental institution and one of the first mental hospitals built with public funds,” according to the NHL.

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Babcock Building- Stained Glass

I’m going through a ton of old photos to move a blog post on the South Carolina State Hospital, Babcock Building to this blog over the next few days (it’s enough photos it may be a two part post) but in the meantime, here’s a few photos of the gorgeous stained glass in the attic.

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North Brother Island- Morgue

The morgue building on North Brother Island was originally built as a chapel, and its original construction purpose is shown in the Gothic yellow stained glass windows, most of which have since fallen out or been smashed apart. Located right beside the ferry gantry, the building was repurposed as an easier way to transfer the bodies to the mainland for being laid to rest with minimal interaction by other patients, thus preventing stress among the patients remaining on the island. A new, wooden chapel was built further south on the island, and barely even a superstructure remains.

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Ellis Island’s North Side: Baggage & Dormitory Building

The north side of Ellis Island was the original side, consisting of 3.3 acres though it was later expanded between 1890 and 1897, much as the south side was constructed by creating more land using ship ballast. The tide of immigrants seeking entry to the United States increased rapidly in the early 20th century, and as such the south side was later constructed, as referenced in my earlier post covering the South Side.

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Rainy Day Sanatorium

I came back from a long weekend of shooting hospitals, and have been editing the photos from the three days. Here’s one, from Mont Alto Sanatorium in the mountains of PA, shot on a rainy day.

North Brother Island- Gantry

Located on the far west side of the island, facing Hunt’s Point in the Bronx is the original ferry gantry for Riverside Hospital. Run several times a day, the ferry was used to get patients to and from the island, typically only on their entrance and release . By the days of the island as a drug rehab center, some patients had privileges to leave the island, though this was one of the many reasons the island was eventually closed, due to a high recidivism rate and escapism. There’s many accounts of staff bringing drugs and other illegal substances on the island as they crossed on the ferry. Continue reading

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