Descriptive Essay-Pennhurst Asylum

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Pennhurst Asylum By: sarah hill The air stands still as you walk around the decaying buildings. The feeling of something watching you is heavily present in your thoughts. An oder, a damp, musty, moldy odor, fills your nose as you try to peek inside and see what 's in these decrepit buildings. This isnt just a place to get a rush of adrenalin with your friends as you go through the grounds of Pennhurst. This neglected, overgrown place that now is sitting while it rots in time, was actually once used to be a high functioning safe facility for the people who were abandoned, mentally unstable, or mentally challenged. Pennhurst has a long list of problems if you dig deep enough into the history of the chilling place. There is the…show more content…
1908, a small wooded town, nestled in Pennsylvania, has just opened its doors to a new kind of care. The care for the uncared and unwanted people that live in the area now have a place to go. The name Eastern Pennsylvania State Institution of the Feeble-Minded and Epileptic, has been spelled out on a sign in front of an assortment of buildings with a great amount of land surrounding it. The idea of opening Pennhurst, was to house those who were disabled and to provide assisted care to the people with developmental disabilities. People viewed this place as a model institution that was the result in the so called progressive era to be a resolution to the public society to deal with those who are disabled. Michael Alan Goldberg, one of the writers of Philadelphia Weekly, said that “It, meaning Pennhurst, was a place where the disabled could be hidden away from a world that feared them.” (Goldberg). But, shortly after its big proclaim of being so wonderful, in 1910 Pennhurst was already starting to fail only after being open for 2 years. The reasons for the failure of Pennhurst was that people flocked from all over the region, making it a very crowded place. With a limited amount of administrators, the overcrowded building and extreme lack of funding from the state, sent the workers to complain. Eventually the lack of space and resources led to staff cuts and poor training. These problems led to the rampant neglect, and, the physical and mental abuse to the residence. Some cases stated that resident have been raped, thrown several feet across a room, being hit and bruised by various objects, and one benign woman was left in physical restraints for a total of 2,692 hours and 30 minutes over the course of only 4 years all due to the fact that there was a shortage of staff all throughout Pennhurst was operating, and staff abusing them. “The environment at Pennhurst is not only not conducive to learning new skills, but it is so poor that it contributes to
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