Pike County people buried at Athens Lunatic Asylum Cemetery



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 Athens  Lunatic Asylum, was a mental hospital operated in Athens, Ohio from 1874  until 1993. During its operation, the hospital provided services to a  variety of patients including Civil War veterans, children, and violent  criminals suffering from various mental disabilities.

Although  not a self-sustaining facility, for many years the hospital had  livestock, farm fields and gardens, an orchard, greenhouses, a dairy, a  physical plant to generate steam heat, and even a carriage shop in the  earlier years. The architect for the original building was Levi T.  Scofield of Cleveland. Construction of the facility began on November 5,  1868 and the hospital opened on January 9, 1874.

There  are 1,930 people buried at the three cemeteries.  Of those, 700 women  and 959 men lay under the headstones marked only with a number. There  were some patients who had died that were reunited with their families  and buried in cemeteries around their homes. By 1943, the State of Ohio  began putting names, births, and deaths, on the markers of the patients  who died.

Since  nearly the time of the opening of the cemeteries the State of Ohio has  allowed families to erect private markers at the graves of their loved  ones, There are very few graves marked in that way, most likely because  descendants are unaware of the opportunity.

Here  is some reasons you could be sent there: "The leading cause of insanity  among the male patients was masturbation, according to the annual  report of 1876. The second-most common cause of insanity, as recorded in  the first annual report, was intemperance and dissipation. In the  hospital's first three years of operation, eighty-one men and one woman  were diagnosed as having their insanity caused by masturbation.  Fifty-six men and one woman were diagnosed as having their insanity  caused by intemperance and dissipation during this same period of time."

Epilepsy was also considered a major cause of insanity and reason for admission to the hospital in the early years.   Also common ailments faced today such as epilepsy, menopause, alcohol  addiction and tuberculosis were cause for enrollment in the hospital.

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Death of Miss Rolfe 17 Jun 1886 Waverly Watchman


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Margaret Starr taken to Athens 12 Aug 1886 Waverly Watchman