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maidstone lunatic asylum

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maidstone lunatic asylum

Postby cathyhudd » Tue Nov 25, 2008 7:56 pm

One of my ancestors, James Pitt, was listed as an attendant in patient (attendant) in the 1891 census. Does anyone know if that means that is his occupation or whether he was there to look after a relative? Many thanks, Cathy
Looking for information about:- Harpers of Northamptonshire, Warwickshire and Buckinghamshire. Whaymans and Goodings of Suffolk and Essex. Jacques of Leicestershire. Hudds, Pontings and Partridges of Gloucestershire.
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RE: maidstone lunatic asylum

Postby FamilyHistoryAddict » Tue Nov 25, 2008 11:00 pm

I'd like to see the census sheet with him listed to get a clue. His name was James Pitt. Any more details so that I can look at the census to see him?

Cheers, FHA
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RE: maidstone lunatic asylum

Postby ksouthall » Mon Jan 05, 2009 3:56 pm

Cathy,

I have had a quick look at the 1891 Census and have the following information about your ancestor, James Pitt:-

James Pittt Single Age 37 Born in Worcestershire Occupation: Attendant on Insane in Asylum Employed

So it seems that your ancestor worked in the District Kent County Lunatic Asylum in Maidstone and was not a patient.

It may be possible to obtain his record of employment, however I do not know how to go about that. Maybe you could enter District Kent County Lunatic Asylum into Google and see if anything comes up.

I hope this has been helpful.
Happy New Year,
Katherine
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RE: maidstone lunatic asylum

Postby ksouthall » Mon Jan 05, 2009 4:13 pm

Further to my earlier reply, I have had a more detailed look at the 1891 Census for the District Kent County Lunatic Asylum at Maidstone and it must have been huge as there are 69 pages detailing the employees and the patients.
The patients are referred to by initials only so anyone with a relative in Kent who appears to be missing in the 1891 Census may find it useful to check the asylum entries.
Although it is difficult to think of any of our ancestors ending up in asylums, it is worth remembering that there were people placed in them who should not have been, for example, women who gave birth to illegitimate children. People who did not conform with popular ideas at the time may also have been locked away to prevent them from spreading their ideas.
I hope this is useful,
Katherine
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RE: maidstone lunatic asylum

Postby FamilyHistoryAddict » Mon Jan 05, 2009 4:30 pm

Women suffering from post natal depression, stroke patients and epileptics were also confined to lunatic asylums. The patient records often make for grim reading; but the up side is that the records often contain much family history information and even photographs of the patient.

I have many of these records myself including photographs.

Cheers, FHA
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RE: maidstone lunatic asylum

Postby ksouthall » Mon Jan 05, 2009 5:20 pm

I have an ancestor (1st cousin 4 times removed) who died in the West Sussex County Asylum in Chichester in 1909. I have her death certificate and keep meaning to obtain details of her medical records to find out why she ended up in an asylum. She was in the asylum in the 1901 Census when aged 36 and died unmarried.
In the 1881 Census she was in service in East Sussex but does not appear in the 1891 Census.
The cause of her death is listed as "Secondary dementia - 12 years. Pulmonary tuberculosis - 4 years" on her death ceritifcate, so she was about 32 when admitted into the asylum.
So far, I have not had the time to find out more as I have been following up information on direct ancestors, however I am intrigued by what happened to her so will make this my next line of enquiry.
Thanks FHA for the extra information,
Katherine
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RE: maidstone lunatic asylum

Postby FamilyHistoryAddict » Mon Jan 05, 2009 5:36 pm

If the records still exist, I'm sure West Sussex Record Office could tell you of their whereabouts if you give them full details of the patient. Good luck with it!

Cheers, FHA [:)]
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