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The Wellington Asylum.

Grave charges have been made against the management of the Wellington Lunatic Asylum, and an inquiry is now being made into them. Last Friday Mr Henry Anderson, lately editor of the Wellington Chtontcle was examined, and his evidence is a fair specimen of what is being given by the witnesses against the institution. The following is the Post's report of Mr Anderson’s evidence : Henry Anderson, journalist, said—l have a nephew in the Asylum. He has been there 2\ years. Formerly I was in the habit of visiting him frequently. He is a perfect idiot. I remember visiting the Asylum on one occasion. Whitelaw said my nephew was not in a fit condition to be seen. I insisted on seeing him. My nephew was in a horrible condition. His eyes were bunged up, and his cheeks and other parts of the face were a mass of bruises and extravasated blood. His appearance, in short, reminded me of that of a principal who had been beaten in a prize-fight of thirty rounds. I asked, “ How the devil did my nephew get that 1” Whitelaw explained that the poor iellow had walked up and down the corridor in his paroxysms, and had knocked his head up against the wall and doorposts. I retorted, “That cannot be." The bloodshot condition of the eyes suggested a good “pounding.” Then they brought a powerful lunatic of 14 stone, and got him to tell me that he and my nephew had been fighting. My nephew was no more able to offer resistance than a book; he was utterly helpless, and unable to communicate with the outer world. Being the editor of a newspaper at the time, I could have made things unpleasant for the authorities; but on considering the matter I found I was unable to prove anything, so remained silent, so far as the was concerned. Cross-exa-mined—Traces of the bruises were visible for three or four weeks. My nephew must have got an awful hammering. I consider he must have been most damnably illtreated. Whitelaw seemed sorry for the fellow’s appearance. For myself, lam an expert in the way of inflicting bruises, but I could not have painted a man’s face like that unless I had him under operation for several minutes.

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Bibliographic details

The Wellington Asylum., Ashburton Guardian, Volume 2, Issue 276, 23 February 1881

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The Wellington Asylum. Ashburton Guardian, Volume 2, Issue 276, 23 February 1881