Kirkbride Buildings Blog

Archive for June, 2010

Greystone One Step Closer to Preservation

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010

Greystone Park Kirkbride Building
The Greystone Park Kirkbride building‘s future just got a little brighter. A special task force charged with developing a preservation plan for the building was just established by a bill that passed New Jersey’s state senate by a vote of 38 to 0 yesterday! The bill was sponsored by New Jersey state senator Bill Codey. The eleven member task force will be comprised of state employees and politicians, plus five members of the general public including “a former patient or family member of a former patient at the original Greystone Park Psychiatric Hospital.” The task force will submit their plan within six months after their first meeting. Read more: Codey Measure to Preserve Greystone Park Approved.

This doesn’t mean preservation is guaranteed for the building, but it makes it much more likely. I’m especially pleased to see the unanimous vote which indicates there’s a lot of support for saving this historic structure. Hopefully within a year (or even less) the task force will have created a solid preservation plan and Greystone’s outlook will look even better.

Brattleboro Retreat

Friday, June 11th, 2010

Brattleboro Retreat Main Building
I recently came into possession of a small booklet about the Brattleboro Retreat which was published in 1931. The booklet contains the hospital’s history and lots of photographs, but what I found most interesting was the drawing above. That is, of course, the Retreat’s main building which I would call a Kirkbride (albeit a small and unimpressive one). But notice that the drawing is dated 1844 — a few years before the widely accepted “first Kirkbride building” was designed and built in Trenton, New Jersey! (more…)