Welcome to the Hudson River State Hospital located in the United States in Poughkeepsie, New York. This gigantic hospital has overlooked the Hudson River for 136 years since its initial construction in 1871. The various hospital buildings were constructed and belong to the famous Kirkbride architectural order (read more on this excellent website).
The hospital was divided into two wings, for male and female patients, with an administration section located in the center. The male wing was much larger than the respective female wing. This was caused by the number of patients being unequal between the sexes (see the sky view from the hospital using the link above).
The beauty of the decay was unbelievable in this hospital. Most of the original constructions had been preserved.
Future renovation construction of the hospital were planned long ago. A fire, caused by lightning, burned the male wing in June 2007. As of the date of this article, the fate of Hudson Psyche Center remains unknown.
Hopefully this awesome Kirkbride will be saved. The United States is certainly not Europe and listing historical buildings as monuments might not be enough to protect them…
Archive documents dated between 1891 and 1918 (click on a thumbnail to enlarge):
Special thanks to Dr. Bob for sharing the old postcards.
Reference for the scanned documents: Handbook of the State Hospital Commission and the Hospitals for the Insane, 1918, E.S.Graney.
The site is guarded and watched. While people trespass often (just look at the plethora of so called 'underground/urban exploration' sites with photos), I can say from personal observation that the local police are active and vigilent in intercepting any and all tresspassers, so I would give second thought to 'checking out the site' without permission.
Having been up close and personal to the Kirkbride - it is extremely dangerous - caved in ceilings and floors, lead paint flaking inches deep, toxic mold, asbestos in abundance, you name it - this is not limited to merely the inconvenience of a 'No Trespassing' sign site.
Even if you are able to avoid the onsite patrols and police patrols, is it worth braving permanent health damage and/or coming face-to-face with a crack-head or the like? Falling through the floor when no one knows you're there?
Do your paper, but save yourself the aggravation and danger of the photos - they are already out there - use theirs for your paper - you can do that...
I was working at Blockbuster when about three firetrucks came screaming down route 9 when I found out about the fire which greatly saddened me, because I wanted to go and take pictures there myself before it had happened.
Plus I might be doing a research paper on how the HRSH helped formed Dutchess County/Poughkeepsie. Any info anyone could give me would be highly appreciated. Also how did you get in to take these pictures because I would like to go and take some myself for my paper.
Thanks! My grandmother lived there for twenty years circa 1935-1955. Wish I would have gone up to see it before the fire. Thanks for the info.
I once lived near this place about a year ago, I remember when it caught fire, My friend had been so terrifed becasue he lived right down the road form it. It was such a grand builidng, beautiful and historic, Its a pity they didnt fix it up when they had the chance. Do you know if all the older parts have hall burned down? I konw it was one specific wing, that caught fire but I've always wanted to explore that beautiful haunting building.
It was very strange that they refused to tell us any sufficiant information about the building and such
I remember when this was an active facility... In fact, I was incarcerated there for a short time back in the late 1980s. Thanks for the great photos!
It was tragic to see this building burn. I was there for three days and then some. Probably one of the largest fires in this areas history. The cause that brought this building down was a lighting strike.
great site, love the photos
wat is het toch altijd jammer dat er met zulke prachtige gebouwen niets meer gedaan wordt, men laat het maar vervallen en uiteindelijk wordt het dan afgebroken.... Jammer dat zoveel historische gebouwen dit lot treft. Maar wel geweldig om er "samen met jullie" doorheen te dwalen.
What a great place!! and beautiful photo's! To bad it't in the USA. Greetings from The Netherlands
What a fantastic site! My Great-Grandmother lived there sometime in the 30's. Do you have access to medical files?
To Liz: no, sorry.
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