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LUNATIC ALYLUM DISCLOSURES.

Says a Press Association telegram from Dunedin, under yesterday’s date : Some interest has been created by the publication of a report by Mr Bradshaw, Deputy Inspector of Lunatic Asylums here, concerning inmates of the Asylum whom hs alleged to be sane. In one case, that of B. W., he alleges the man was committed without a warrant, was twice discharged on the first examination as sane, but the third time was detained, being decidedly insane. It is understood that Mr Bradshaw refers to this case to show that such persons on being sent to ' the Asylum merely for examination should be kept separate from lunatics, in whose company at present they have to sleep, etc. Another case is that of A.T.A., who, when Mr Bradshaw saw him, was, he alleges, sane, and had complained to him that', he had been kept there ten years, enough to make him mad.” Mr says—“ After consulting Dr Neill, I have come to the conclusion from what he says, and from observation, that this patient is not insane, and ought to be discharged. He is a strong, healthylooking person, and ought to be able, from his appearance, to earn his living : outside of the Asylum. lam of opinion

that be is not mad, and I feel that it is my duty to say bo.” In reference to this case, Dr Macgregor, : Professor of the Otago University and : Medical Inspector of the Asylum, has written to the papers, stating there can be no doubt of the man’s insanity, and says, “ About seven years ago, the Hon. Capt. Fraser, as Inspector, misled just as Mr ■ Bradshaw has been, by the man s plaus- -' ability, thought it his duty to bring this v man’s case before the Supreme Court, with the reault that his insanity was proved to the satisfaction of every intelli- : gent person, and the Judge sent him back to the Asylum.” . A reporter of the Star to-day interviewed Mr Hume, the former Superintendent of the Asylum, about the case, and . publishes the following “Mr Hume - states that this man, who at one time - held a good position, has a craze about electricity, ar.d until this subject is touched on he appears quite sane. He imagines that everything is clothed or charged with electricity; that trees are covered with electricity as with snow, that his body is enveloped with electric rings, and vessels are propelled by electricity, and that there are persons who discharge electricity into nia body. Under the latter delusion, he on one occasion attacked a man who on the same steamer with him when coming from : : Sydney. This is the only instance of .‘.violence on record. He was considered ■ ■ quite harmless. During the visits of the Marquis of Hormanby and Sir James Pergusaon to the Asylum, he asserted that “clouds of electricity ” had passed from their stomachs into his. Ho thought he received telegrams through the air, and he asserted that he had visited places at certain times where he had not been, being under the eyes of his friends at the time. He also frequently asserts he could hear people speaking to him from Port Chalmers and Invercargill. A. T. A.’s insanity was brought about by drink. He consumed a bottle of pale brandy every day for some time prior to his ad- . mittance into the Asylum. He had free intercourse with the public. The authori- * tins had frequently offered to hand him over to the care of any of bis friends, as : he was quite harmless, but none of them would accept the charge. In the opinion of Mr Hume and the Medical Superintendent, the man is undoubtedly insane, and they believe that on his arrival in England, if not taken charge of by his brother, to whom he has gone, he will be locked up in some lunatic asylum there. Mr Bradshaw now further asset ts that

Dr Neill, the present Medical Superintendent, discharged the man as cured on ■May 27th last. So the matter stands at present.

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Permanent link to this item

http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/AG18820715.2.16

Bibliographic details

LUNATIC ALYLUM DISCLOSURES., Ashburton Guardian, Volume III, Issue 689, 15 July 1882

Word Count
672

LUNATIC ALYLUM DISCLOSURES. Ashburton Guardian, Volume III, Issue 689, 15 July 1882

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