As Halloween quickly approaches, here's a look at some real-life creepy abandoned mental asylums around New York State. What's more frightening than quite-possibly haunted mental asylums where real-life horrors happened?
These are locations around the state where people were sent to spend the rest of their lives and more often than not, die lonely miserable deaths. Some of the really unlucky residents had experiments conducted on them like lobotomies and electro-therapy. The bad vibes will make your skin crawl just by watching the videos below, never mind actually being in the actual location.
1. Hart Island Women's Asylum
Long Island Sound, New York
In addition to serving as a women’s asylum at one point, Hart Island has approximately one million bodies buried on it. The Island houses the graves of the poor, prisoners, the unclaimed, and the diseased.
Hart Island was used as a quarantine station during the 1870 yellow fever epidemic. In that period, the island contained a women's psychiatric hospital called The Pavilion, which was built 1885, as well as a tubercularium. There was also an industrial school with 300 students on the island. ~Wikipedia
The Island came into use again due to the coronavirus pandemic. With the deadly virus overwhelming New York City morgues, the public cemetery on Hart Island became home to many people who died from COVID-19. You can just feel the sorrow and sadness of the island without even taking a trip there.
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2. Letchworth Village
Thiells, New York
The hospital was constructed in 1911 and closed in 1996. The campus is still open to people to stroll around.
Letchworth Village is a former institution for the mentally and physically disabled in Haverstraw, New York in Rockland County. The Thiells facility was the unfortunate location in which many patients were used as human guinea pigs to test experimental clinical trials. Perhaps the most notable experiments were the trials to test the polio vaccine, which happened to be the first experiments for the vaccine in the world using a human test subject. ~ Untapped Cities
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3. Buffalo State Hospital
Buffalo, New York
The 13-building complex, had been abandoned since 1974. Hotel Henry had brought some new life to the complex, but it closed in February of 2021.
Among Western New York’s allegedly most haunted sites stands the architecturally acclaimed H.H. Richardson complex, begun in 1871 and opened in 1880 as the Buffalo State Asylum for the Insane or the Buffalo Asylum Psychiatric Center. ~Center for Inquiry
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Utica Psychiatric Center
4. Utica State Hospital aka Utica Psychiatric Center
Utica, New York
The hospital opened in opened on January 16, 1843. The last patients left the facility in 1977.
Within the massive Greek Revival hospital, facilitators regularly performed lobotomies and electroshock therapy. Patients lived in filth, confined to cramped quarters with little care. It was here that doctors invented the Utica Crib, an inhuman, long, shallow cage where they kept agitated people to calm them down or to punish misbehaving residents.~ TimeOut
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SEE ALSO: 6 Hikes That Lead to Abandoned Ruins in the Hudson Valley
5. Harlem Valley Psychiatric Center
Dover, New York
The Harlem Valley Psychiatric Center opened in 1924 in Wingdale, NY. It was open for 70 years and thousands of mentally ill patients were treated there.
Over the years, the Harlem Valley Psychiatric Center adopted numerous experimental methods of treatment of the mentally ill. In the 1930s, the facility joined several other institutions on the vanguard of a new insulin shock therapy for the treatment of patients with schizophrenia and other compulsive disorders. Later, when the method of electro-shock therapy was created, the hospital was again a pioneer in implementing the method as a treatment for its patients in 1941. When neuropsychiatrist Walter Freeman developed a new method for treating a wide range of psychological conditions that became known as a lobotomy, the Harlem Valley Psychiatric Center was the preeminent institution for frontal lobotomy in the state of New York. ~ Atlas Obscura
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6. Rolling Hills Asylum
East Bethany, New York
The Rolling Hills Asylum housed poor and destitute people and families, orphans, the handicapped, mentally ill, drunks and, criminals.
Check out the official announcement in the Batavia Times newspaper from December 9, 1826:
Notice is hereby given that the Genesee County Poorhouse will be ready for the reception of paupers on the first day of January 1827 … The Overseers of the Poor of the several towns of the County of Genesee are requested, in all cases of removal of paupers to the county poorhouse, to send with them their clothing, beds, bedding and such other articles belonging to the paupers as may be necessary and useful to them.
The following were eligible for assistance:
Habitual drunkards, lunatics (one who by disease, grief or accident lost the use of reason or from old age, sickness or weakness was so weak of mind as to be incapable of governing or managing their affairs), paupers (a person with no means of income), state paupers (one who is blind, lame, old or disabled with no income source) or a vagrant. ~ Rolling Hills Asylum
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