American Treasures of the Library of Congress: Memory, Exhibit Object Focus

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First Hospital for the
Mentally Ill

List of patients
Benjamin Hornor Coates, M.D.
List of patients at the
Pennsylvania Hospital

Bound holograph manuscript, 1838
Manuscript Division
Gift/purchase Marian S. Carson, 1997 (27.9)

Benjamin Hornor Coates, M.D., was attending physician at the Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia from 1828 to 1841. The Pennsylvania Hospital began admitting mentally disturbed patients after 1752. It was the first institution in the United States dedicated to the treatment of mental and physical illness in a period of reform that saw the shift away from punishment and restraint toward the treatment of patients' symptoms. Coates was a pioneer in the use of narcotics in the treatment of the insane. Shown here is a list of patients treated in 1838, noting the date of admissions.

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