Dorothea Dix Thesis

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Dorothea Lynde Dix Dorothea Dix is well known for her efforts to reform insane asylums and because of her dedication to changing the lives of help themselves who are in need of assistance, such as the mentally ill and the imprisoned. “She was a leading figure in those national and international movements that challenged the idea that people with mental disturbances could not be cured or helped.” Throughout her years of improving and changing of the prison conditions and the mentally ill, Dorothea Dix has made significant changes through her efforts and can be seen all over the U.S, Canada, and many European Countries. Dorothea Dix was born in a small town of Hampden, Maine in 1802. Dorothea Lynde Dix´s parents were Joseph and Mary Dix.…show more content…
With limited options for women professions, Dix decides to open an elementary school inside her grandmother’s house in 1821. The school was named "the Hope" and it served mainly the poor children of Boston whose parents could not afford an education. Unfortunately, the school came to a closing in 1826 due to Dorothea being repeatedly and sporadically ill. At this time, Dorothea wrote her first book, Conversations on Common Things. This book for children was quite popular and sold many copies. The book reflected Dix’s belief that women should be educated to the same level as men. In 1831, Dix opened up a secondary school on the grounds of her mother’s estate but by 1836, her commitment to teaching and overloaded work took its toll after Dorothea became extremely ill in which she was forced to close down the school once again. It is now known that Dorothea suffered from…show more content…
She immediately went next door and complained to the county courthouse about the cold cells and the court granted her wish. This sparked off her attitude towards helping the mentally ill because she proved that she could put an end to abuse by herself. After two years of she finally finished with her stay there at the jail and compiled a detailed report on the “wrongs” of the jail and submitted it to the legislature in January 1843. “A bill addressing the exposed conditions passed very quickly due to her connections with powerful politicians in Massachusetts. The Worcester Insane Asylum was to be enlarged.” She then moved on to other nearby states such as New York, and Rhode Island on behalf of the mentally ill. In 1845, she addressed the legislatures in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. She moved on to Alabama, Louisiana, Georgia, South Carolina, Mississippi, and Arkansas. However, determined to go more than just the state legislatures, she submitted a bill to Congress in 1848 to set aside 5 million acres for institutions of the mentally ill. The bill was finally passed in 1854 by both Congress and the House of Representatives. President Millard Fillmore admired and supported Dorothea Dix and in 1852 signed an executive order to begin construction of a hospital that would benefit Army and Navy veterans. Dorothea soon became ill once again and returned back to the Rathbones family in England to recover.
Once returned to
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