HR100: Commending Central State Hospital.


Offered February 21, 2020
Commending Central State Hospital.
Patron-- Aird

WHEREAS, Central State Hospital, an inpatient psychiatric facility, has provided care and treatment to the residents of Petersburg, Dinwiddie County, and other Central Virginia counties for 150 years; and

WHEREAS, Central State Hospital traces its roots to the end of the Civil War, when the Freedmen’s Bureau leased Howards Grove Hospital to create the first mental and medical hospital in the nation for emancipated African Americans; and

WHEREAS, originally known as the Central Lunatic Asylum for Colored Insane, Central State Hospital was ceded to the Commonwealth in 1870; the hospital treated patients diagnosed with insanity, but it also served members of the community afflicted with other medical, social, and economic challenges; and

WHEREAS, by 1885, the population of the Central State Hospital had reached 373 patients, and a new, larger facility was erected on the former site of the Mayfield plantation to better serve the community; and

WHEREAS, the number of patients at the Central State Hospital doubled each decade between 1885 and 1950, when the inpatient population had reached 5,000, with the rate of hospitalization consistently ranking at twice that of the black proportion of the state population; and

WHEREAS, Central State Hospital remained segregated until 1968 and was the only such hospital in Virginia that accepted African American mental health patients from throughout the Commonwealth for nearly 100 years; and

WHEREAS, today, Central State Hospital is accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations and strives to enhance the wellness and safety of the community; and

WHEREAS, in its 150-year history, Central State Hospital has served the residents of Petersburg, Dinwiddie County, and other Central Virginia counties by offering rehabilitative care for patients and extensive employment opportunities for local residents; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED by the House of Delegates, That Central State Hospital hereby be commended on the occasion of its 150th anniversary; and, be it

RESOLVED FURTHER, That the Clerk of the House of Delegates prepare a copy of this resolution for presentation to Central State Hospital as an expression of the House of Delegates’ admiration for its contributions to the community.