Weston State Hospital

Construction of the Weston State Hospital Kirkbride building, designed by R. Snowden Andrews, began in 1858 but was stalled by the outbreak of the Civil War. The asylum finally opened as the West Virginia Hospital for the Insane soon after West Virginia became a state in 1863, and the Kirkbride building began accommodating patients in 1864. Construction of the building, however, was not completed until 1880.

Composed primarily of blue sandstone, it is claimed that Weston Hospital is the largest hand-cut stone building in North America. Regardless of its size, there is beautiful detail in the stonework, including several carved faces — some human, some animal. The building is surrounded by a large tree-shaded park which is enclosed by a wrought iron fence. The central clocktower is the building's most striking feature. Rising from the roof of the central administration building, the tower is topped by a long spire. In all it reaches some 200 feet into the air.

In 1994 the Weston State Hospital Kirkbride was vacated and abandoned for several years. In 2007, the property was purchased at auction and is currently privately owned. In 2008 the location was re-christened the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum (one of its earlier names). Preservation of the Kirkbride building appears to be a real possibility now. For more information on this building's future and for a list of current public activites at the location, please see www.trans-alleghenylunaticasylum.com.

Other names for this hospital:

  • Lunatic Asylum West of the Allegheny Mountains
  • West Virginia Hospital for the Insane
  • First Hospital for the Insane
  • Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum


Forum Topics

Read more about Weston State Hospital in the forum.

'New'Weston State Hospital'Book'
I noticed a little while ago that there was a book on Amazon.com called Weston State Hospital by Kim...
Chris Payne To Lecture At Weston State Hospital On Nov.29th!
Unfortunatley I will not be able to make this event, but it should be really nice.Read about it...
Weston Clocktower Restoration
All those funds from the tours and ghost hunts are adding...

Blog Posts

Kirkbrides HD
In honor of the 203rd anniversary of Thomas Story Kirkbride's birthday, I think everybody should take a look at Duffy's Kirkbrides HD video project. There are lots of good...
Ghost Adventures at Weston
For Halloween this year, “Ghost Adventures” will be at the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum on October 30th for a SEVEN HOUR live broadcast. The show will be aired on The...
Goings On at the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum
Although they've faced a lot of controversy, the Jordan family are to be applauded and respected for taking on the difficult task of preserving and re-using the former Weston...