Snake Pit Psychiatric

Walking around an abandoned psychiatric hospital is always an interesting experience. This facility was built in 1927, and contains several buildings on a large campus in New York. This institution had its own working farm, power plant, and industrial shops, all of which were staffed by patients. This was considered one of the best-planned psychiatric hospitals in the world when it opened. Within a few years, they had begun using procedures such as insulin shock therapy, electroshock therapy, and lobotomies. During its peak in 1959, the hospital had over 9,000 patients and 2,000 employees. Unfortunately, this hospital suffered from many of the same issues as other hospitals during this time period, such as overcrowding, disease and staff shortages.

 

If not for all the bars on the windows, the hospital grounds feel very similar to a college campus. The streets are lined with old streetlamps that look to be the originals. The facilities include a cafeteria, administrative offices, and recreation center (with a bowling alley!). There was also a children’s psychiatric ward, which was easily the creepiest part of this hospital. There is just something unsettling about seeing toys covered in several years’ worth of dust, and a rainbow mural that is peeling off the wall. There is still one large hospital building in use on the grounds, but it appears to be much newer construction. The future of the vacant buildings is currently unknown, but there is a possibility that the site will be rebuilt into a retirement community.