Posts Tagged ‘1908’

It was originally known as the Eastern State Institution for the feeble-minded and epileptic, it closed 9th December 1987 after a decade of controversy. From 1903- 1908 the original buildings were constructed, there were further additions to the site in 1919, 1921 and 1929. It didn’t stop there either, more were contributed in the 1960’s and again in 1971.

23rd November, 1908, they admitted patient 1 and within four years it was overcrowded and pressured. The patients would be classified, and the status of admitted children would be seen as abhorrent these days. They ranged from the mute, blind, epileptic to deformity, offensive habits and more. Yet somehow they also for the patients into making mattresses, shoes, farming, laundry and other trades.

There were other assumptions, one of them was the Chief Physician (and eugenicist) thought that all of those of feeble mind were potential criminals.

In 1968 a CBS10 correspondent Bill Baldini anchored a five part exposé about the poor conditions. In 1983 there were nine employees on charges of patient abuse and finally the Halderman Case details the wide-spread abuse and finally resulted in its closure.

Halderman was a resident who upon her release filed suit in the federal district court. It had started when she visited her parents and had unexplained bruises, it led to the courts finding that Pennhurst was unsanitary, inhumane, dangerous and violating the fourteenth amendment (an easy summary being an Equal Protection Clause), and essentially the patients rights had been abused.

It has since been through various attempts at reincarnation for use. Now the administration building has been partially renovated and opened as the Pennhurst Asylum haunted house. It attracts quite an interest but those formerly affiliated with the place seem to find this disrespectful and controversy about it remains. Former patients, I presume from some feedback, find the tourism and sensational way it is handled as somewhat akin to a slap in the face.

Pennhurst has attracted its fair share of TV coverage, with shows like Ghost Adventures, Ghost Hunters (TAPS) and Haunted History in the name.

Reports on the paranormal side involve partial and full-bodied apparitions, the noises of screaming and piano playing. Along with various reports of this, those interested in the exposure of the place will find Suffer the Little Children both interesting but at the same time it can be a quite disturbing watch.

Admin-current-pennhurst.jpg
By Smccphotog (talk) (Uploads) – Own work, Public Domain, Link

 

A large explosion was  caused by the impact of a small asteroid (or comet) in the area of what is now Krasnoyarsk Krai, Russia. It is the largest impact on Earth, that has been recorded in history. It occurred 30th June 1908.

There have been around a thousand scholastic studies about the impact and it’s site. The energy the event generated was about a thousand times larger then the atomic bomb that was dropped at Hiroshima, Japan.

Those in the area reported seeing a column of bright bluish light, ten minutes later there was a flash and sound like artillery fire. A shock wave caused people to be knocked off their feet and broke windows, hundreds of kilometres away.

Dr Who fans may recognise mention of the event in the novel, The Wages of Sin.

Comic fans from the DC side might also note that it was used in #199 Justice League of America.

 

Edit: This was also used with reference to the band Metallica’s video, All Nightmare Long. The video does not feature the band and instead features a series of historical events following the 1908 event. Band member Kirk Hammett claimed to have brought the film from a fan for $5 but then forgot about ut, later on having picked it up again he found a new fascination in it and arrange for a translation. The story was later revealed to be more fictional and used to hype the video (sort of Blair Witch style I guess).

If you want to see their video then CLICK here as unfortunately their official copy does not allow for embedding. Enjoy!

December 1912, the headlines were filled with a 1908 discovery in a gravel pit from southern England. A claim was brought forward of a missing link from the human evolution.

A ‘Pre-historic’ skull was discovered in Sussex, the Piltdown Man looked like the stage between ape to human and was a potentially grand discovery for evolutionists and scientists.

Charles Dawson was the man that  was credited with the find. He was a local solicitor and fossil-hunter, he also brought forward more finds such as a tooth in 1913, another tooth and bones in 1915. He passed away in 1916.

In 1950 a reconstruction  of the head was made using the available bones and during this period the bones were declared to be a fake. The declaration came at the same point in 1953 as Britain celebrated conquering Everest.

A link from the BBC about this.