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History of Social Welfare Policies & Programs Up to the 1930s: The Mentally Ill

This guide focuses on resources that you can use when seeking information on the history of social welfare policies and programs in the U.S. up to the 1930s.

Target Populations: The Mentally Ill

"History of Mental Health Services,"
IN Mental Health: A Report of the Surgeon General. Rockville, Md., National Institute of Mental Health, 1999. Chapter 2, pp. 75; 78-80.
Moral Treatment in Asylums and General Hospitals in 19th-Century America,"
Abraham S. Luchins. Journal of Psychology 123(6), November 1989, 585-607.
"Moral treatment, a therapeutic approach that emphasized character and spiritual development, and called for kindness on the part of all who came in contact with the patient, flourished in American mental hospitals during the first half of the 19th century...Changing social and welfare services and advances in scientific medicine contributed to a subsequent decline in moral treatment...." Rutgers-restricted Access.
Ten Days in a Mad-House
Nellie Bly. New York, Ian L. Munro, 1888.
In 1888 New York World journalist Nellie Bly (Elizabeth Cochrane Seaman) allowed herself to be committed to New York City's most notorious insane asylum.
A Mind That Found Itself: An Autobiography.
Clifford W. Beers. New York, Longmans, Green and Co., 1908.
Beers account of his struggle with mental illness and the deplorable state of mental health care in the U.S. had a profound effect on mental health care reform.
"The Transformation of the Mental Hospital in the United States,"
Gerald N. Grob. American Behavioral Scientist 28(5), May/June 1985, 639-654. Rutgers-restricted Access.

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