Throated Dixie Throated Dixie brought the introduction of mental asylums and hospitals for the mentally sick. She encouraged the poor and sick people to get better as soon as they can. Since Throated Dixie has taken this opportunity to help, it has changed the lives of many mentally ill children and adults.
Throated Lynda Dixie was born on April 4, 1802, in Hampered, Maine. She was the eldest of three children, and her father, Joseph Dixie, was a religious fanatic and distributor of religious tracts who made Throated stitch and paste the tracts together, a chore she hated.Dixie had many admirers over her lifetime, and was briefly engaged to her second cousin, Edward Bangs, she never married. Therefore she had no children. Dixie worked closely with Dry. Thomas Kiered, a Philadelphia physician whose philosophy for building and running hospitals to treat the insane was known as “The Kiered plan. ” The New Jersey State antic Asylum was the first Kiered Plan hospital to be built; it is now known as the Trenton Psychiatric Hospital.
She served as Superintendent of Nurses for the Union Army during the Civil War.Throated Die’s work exposing and pushing for legislative changes in the conditions under which the mentally ill were housed and treated led to phenomenal reforms. “Prisons and almshouses, where people suffering from mental illness were housed side-by-side with criminals or the poor, gave way to exclusively dedicated facilities. Dixie ‘ s work resulted in the founding of thirty-two mental hospitals or mental Institutions dedicated specifically to the care of the mentally ill. Prisons at the time were unregulated and unhygienic, with violent criminals housed side by side with the mentally ill.Dixie visited every public and private facility she could access, documenting the conditions she found with unflinching honesty. She then presented her findings to the legislature of Massachusetts, demanding that officials take action toward reform.
Her reports-?filled with dramatic accounts of prisoners flogged, starved, chained, physically and sexually abused by their keepers, and left naked and without heat or sanitation-?shocked her audience and gallivanted a movement to improve conditions for the imprisoned and insane. “Life at the Dixie Mansion was extremely different than Throated was accustomed to.Her grandmother was wealthy and demanded that Throated act and have interests of a wealthy girl. Her grandmother hired a dance instructor and a seamstress to cater to Trochee’s personal needs. However, Throated did not want any of these things. At one point her grandmother punished her severely when she was trying to give food and her new clothes to the beggar children who were standing at their front gate. At the age of fourteen, Madame Dixie requested that her sister, who lived in Worcester, take care of Throated for a “while” and turn her into a “lady.
” Mrs..Duncan, Madame Die’s sister, agreed to this since she was always very fond of Throated. Once she arrived at her great aunt’s house Throated immediately took on the role of “young lady” so she could return to her brother’s. However, she was to stay with her Aunt for nearly four years. ” Trochee’s second career began when she was thirty-nine years old. In March of 1 841 she entered the East Cambridge Jail.
She had volunteered to teach a Sunday School class for women inmates. Upon entering the jail she witnessed such horrible images that her life, from that point on, was changed forever.Within the confines of this jail she observed prostitutes, drunks, criminals, retarded individuals, and the mentally ill were all housed together in unheated, unfurnished, and foul-smelling quarters (Vine & Zurich, 1982). When asked why the jail was in these conditions her answer was, “the insane do not feel heat or cold”. After witnessing these conditions she immediately took the matter to the courts and after a serious of battles finally won. Throated then proceeded to visit jails and almshouses, where the mentally ill were housed, in other parts of Boston and soon her investigations extended over the entire state of Massachusetts.She made careful and extensive notes as she visited with jailers, caretakers and townspeople.
Finally she put together all this data and shaped a carefully worded document to be delivered to the Massachusetts legislature. She had influence within the legislature, since she Was good friends with the governor. In addition her timid presentation of her findings completely won over the legislative board because her conviction was so powerful. After a heated debate over the topic the material won legislative support and funds were set side for the expansion of Worcester State Hospital.Trochee’s views about the treatment of the mentally ill were radical at the time. The popular belief was that the insane would never be cured and living within their dreadful conditions was enough for them. However Throated, just by bettering the conditions of the inmates, showed people that mental illness wasn’t all incurable.
She stated that “some may say these things cannot be remedied, these furious maniacs are not to be raised from these base conditions. I know they are… L could give many examples. One such is a young woman who was or years ‘a raging maniac’ chained in a cage and whipped to control her acts and words.She was helped by a husband and wife who agreed to take care of her in their home and slowly she recovered her senses.
” Although Throated didn’t know the mental processes that were occurring within these individuals she knew that improving their conditions wouldn’t hurt them. Throated Dixie has been described as “the most effective advocate of humanitarian reform in American mental institutions during the nineteenth century” (Golden, 1970). However, her achievements are only mentioned in five of the current fifty-three textbooks covering the history of psychology.The reason given for this is that she did not contribute to our understanding of the nature of mental disorders. However, she is only in of today’s general history books. Although this may seem something hard to fathom Throated Dixie herself would have wanted it this way. In her life, she was inconspicuous with her work to say the least.
She did not place her name on most of her publications. She refused to have hospitals named after her. Expressions of praise and gratitude for her work always produced embarrassment.In later years of her retirement she refused to talk about her achievements and wanted them to “rest in silence”. Should that silence continue? Since Throated Dixie has taken this opportunity to help, it has changed the lives of many mentally ill children and adults. Throated Dixie will always be known for introducing mental asylums and hospitals for the mentally sick. Her encouragement not only helped the mentally sick, but also encouraged others to help too.
“If I am cold, they are cold; if I am weary, they are distressed; if am alone, they are abandoned.
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