Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Louisville in Jefferson County, Kentucky — The American South (East South Central)
 

A Hospital to Cure the Incurable

 
 
A Hospital to Cure the Incurable Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane and Tracy Marsteller, November 28, 2020
1. A Hospital to Cure the Incurable Marker
Inscription.  In 1873, the Commonwealth of Kentucky established the Fourth Kentucky Lunatic Asylum (now known as Central State Hospital) on what is currently E.P. "Tom” Sawyer State Park. The asylum was to take the incurable patients from across Kentucky and those in the other Kentucky asylums. The Asylum accepted 141 patients the first year it was open. The hospital quickly exceeded its bed space and continually had to request state funds to add more dormitories for the influx of patients each year. The superintendent claimed to have numerous problems from year to year, including lack of water, little heating in the winter, too many patients with too few staff, and construction debris at every turn.

Gradually, the hospital became self sufficient with the patients working the farm to aid in their own survival. The asylum jobs were divided along gender and social status lines. The working class women worked in the laundry, kitchen, and completed general house work. The working class men worked in the gardens and orchards and with the livestock on the farm. The wealthier men and women spent their time in recreation activities and reading, while
A Hospital to Cure the Incurable Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane and Tracy Marsteller, November 28, 2020
2. A Hospital to Cure the Incurable Marker
these women would also work in the sewing room. The excess food and material items were sold in the community.

The hospital owned this land until the 1970s, when Governor Louie B. Nunn donated the land to Kentucky State Parks, creating E.P. "Tom” Sawyer State Park. By 1986, the north campus was abandoned and patients were moved to the new facility on La Grange Road. Eventually, the abandoned facilities were demolished and the remaining land was transferred to the park.

"... the Fourth Kentucky Lunatic Asylum. .. assigned to it only chronic cases, and such that were deemed incurable."
— C. C. Forbes M.D., Superintendent, 1874.

Captions
Top left: Main Building of Central State Hospital, ca. 1933. Photo from the Kentucky Digital Library
Bottom left: Sketch of Central State Hospital
Bottom right Dining Hall
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: ArchitectureScience & Medicine.
 
Location. 38° 16.683′ N, 85° 33.267′ W. Marker is in Louisville, Kentucky, in Jefferson County. Marker can be reached from Lakeland Road. Marker is on circular drive off park entrance. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 2201 Lakeland Road, Louisville KY 40223, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the
Paid Advertisement
Click on the ad for more information.
Please report objectionable advertising to the Editor.
crow flies. Lakeland Asylum (here, next to this marker); Isaac Hite's Home / Isaac Hite (approx. 1.6 miles away); Berrytown (approx. 1.7 miles away); Forest Public School (approx. 1.8 miles away); Berrytown Cemetery (approx. 1.9 miles away); Griffytown (approx. 2 miles away); Perryville Prelude (approx. 2.3 miles away); The Benjamin Head House (approx. 2.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Louisville.
 
Also see . . .  Central State Hospital. Comprehensive overview of facility's history by Kentucky Historical Institutions. (Submitted on December 6, 2020, by Duane Marsteller of Murfreesboro, Tennessee.) 
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on December 12, 2020. It was originally submitted on December 5, 2020, by Duane Marsteller of Murfreesboro, Tennessee. This page has been viewed 34 times since then and 6 times this year. Photos:   1. submitted on December 5, 2020, by Duane Marsteller of Murfreesboro, Tennessee.   2. submitted on December 6, 2020, by Duane Marsteller of Murfreesboro, Tennessee.
Paid Advertisement
Mar. 7, 2021