About My Book

Canton Asylum for Insane IndiansI have written a book about the Canton Asylum for Insane Indians published by the University of Nebraska Press (June 1, 2016). I am looking forward to getting this story out to the public, and hope that every reader will discover something new and interesting about the asylum and the era in which it operated.

I stumbled upon the Canton Asylum story quite by accident, while researching the topic of involuntary commitment to madhouses in the 19th century. I was astonished to discover that a place like Canton Asylum had existed, and I immediately began digging for more information.

I’ve reviewed thousands of pages of primary documents in the National Archives and Library of Congress concerning Canton Asylum, the treatment of Native Americans, government policies, and other related topics. I’ve also reviewed dozens of articles in the American Journal of Insanity (which changed its name to the American Journal of Psychiatry in 1921), pored over inspections, reports, and statistics from the era, and discovered information about key figures from many other primary sources.

I invite you to read my blog, which will not duplicate information found in the book (except for some of the barest facts). Instead, I’ll concentrate on interesting information about the era, people, and places that affected the establishment of Canton Asylum. I hope you find the posts interesting, and I welcome any comments or information you can give me on the topics that come up.

GRIM SHADOWS: The Story of the Canton Asylum for Insane Indians, available on Amazon (click on image)