Thursday, September 15, 2011

Traverse City State Hospital

Built in 1885 and closed in 1989. The Traverse City State Hospital was an asylum for the insane. Also known as the Northern Michigan Asylum it is the last Kirkbride Building of Michigan's original four left in the state.

The asylum is made up of many buildings named by numbers. Building 50, the main building, was once a quarter of a mile long and the asylum in its hayday cared for approximately 6,000 patients at one time.

Under the care of James Decker Munson, the first superintendent from 1885 to 1924 the patients were treated through kindness, comfort, pleasure, and beautiful surroundings. Restraints such as straightjackets, were forbidden. Also, as part of the "work is therapy" philosophy, the asylum provided work opportunities for the patients to give them a sense of purpose. The asylum was self sustaining providing its own electricity and heat.

Starting in 2000, The Minervini Group began negotiating with the Grand Traverse Commons Redevelopment Corp. and agreed to renovate the historic building. Now known as The Commons the former building 50 is used for residential and commercial use.

Front of Building 50

(only partial still stands, most of the building was torn down due to fire hazards)

Like any old asylum from days past the reputation of being "haunted" proceeded quickly after the buildings had been abandoned for a number of years since through one of windows ofered a view of peeling mint green lead paint, rusty fixtures and and eerie look into the what was.

You can feel the energy just by walking ground and almost see the residents. It's like taking a trip back as if you were one of the patients.

While looking through these windows it seemed dark within the rooms and stairwells, but after looking at the photos the rooms seemed to be illuminated that didn't appear when I first looked in.

Building 28

(men's cottage)

Morbid wandering of a distorted mind.

If you are ever in the Traverse City area, it is worth a visit to this historical site.


Magic Love Crow said...

This is really spooky and interesting! If the walls could talk! Maybe they do! Wow! Cool post!

Debbie said...

Ooo, wonder if ghost hunters have been here?? I think they would have a great investigation! Thanks for sharing, seems like a very interesting place to visit.

selma said...

The historic and magnificent building. An interesting place to see and hear its story.

Birgit said...

Hi there,

Thanks to Anna’s great Practical Magic blog party website I know that you are taking part in the event. I have pondered how to participate and thought it would be neat to post anonymously people’s thoughts and/or secrets regarding the movie. Sites which inspired me are:

Post Secret
Walt Disney Confessions

Those thoughts or secrets could e.g. be “I have already watched the movie 1,000 times,” “I wish I had a sister like Gilly,” “The aunts’ house is my dream house,” “I have dreamt about Jimmy” etc. Anything which comes to your mind when you think of “Practical Magic.”

If you feel like helping me out, be sure to send me your thought/secret as soon as possible at Of course, I handle each “confession” anonymously. And – please nothing x-rated!

Greetings from Germany,

Lynn Stevens said...

looks like a really spooky place especially around Halloween!