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Utah State Hospital unveils memorial to honor patients


Utah State Hospital unveils memorial to honor patients

PROVO, Utah (AP) — Nearly 500 patients buried in unmarked graves once they died in what used to be as soon as referred to as the Utah Territorial Insane Asylum had been venerated with a brand new memorial in Provo.

The names of patients who died from 1885 to 1960 on the facility this is now the Utah State Hospital are inscribed at the memorial unveiled Wednesday on the Provo City Cemetery, The Daily Herald reported .

The affected person identify plaques are embedded on a chain of headstones positioned close to an obelisk spotting the deaths.

“I always thought that these people had lost everything in their lives, including their own identity, and that we felt like if you really wanted to do this right, you had to give them their names back,” stated Janina Chilton, the historian on the Utah State Hospital. “You had to identify them. They needed to have the same respect and dignity that everyone gets, which is a marker that says ‘I’ve been here.'”

The Utah State Hospital’s Forgotten Patients Cemetery Project unofficially started in 2002 after Chilton began investigating the place patients had been buried, sooner or later main to the health facility elevating $90,000 for the memorial.

Chilton tracked the historical past of a unmarried affected person, main her to the website of the unmarked graves. The website wasn’t in the most efficient form when she visited it for the primary time.

“I was horrified because it was this big, grassy area,” Chilton stated.

Most of the patients had been buried in the similar house, however others had been positioned at quite a lot of places within the cemetery. A couple of dozen patients had markers from households.

“This is one piece of that puzzle that bothered us, is what happened to these people?” Hospital Superintendent Dallas Earnshaw stated. “When we found this out, it was liberating. It was exciting that we didn’t have to worry anymore — that we had found this piece of our history we could bring to closure for everyone here.”

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Information from: The Daily Herald, http://www.heraldextra.com

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This subject material will not be revealed, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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