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Ten Days in a Mad-House

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Author: Nellie Bly (Elizabeth Jane Cochrane Seaman)
Published: 1887
Language: English
Wordcount: 35,409 / 94 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 77.6
LoC Category: BF
Downloads: 14,791
Added to site: 2006.07.03
mnybks.net#: 13995

Since my experiences in Blackwell's Island Insane Asylum were published in the World I have received hundreds of letters in regard to it. The edition containing my story long since ran out, and I have been prevailed upon to allow it to be published in book form, to satisfy the hundreds who are yet asking for copies.I am happy to be able to state as a result of my visit to the asylum and the exposures consequent thereon, that the City of New York has appropriated $1,000,000 more per annum than ever before for the care of the insane. So I have at least the satisfaction of knowing that the poor unfortunates will be the better cared for because of my work.

Show Excerpt

m."

"They don't look very nice," she answered, assentingly, "but they are good, honest working women. We do not keep crazy people here."

I again used my handkerchief to hide a smile, as I thought that before morning she would at least think she had one crazy person among her flock.

"They all look crazy," I asserted again, "and I am afraid of them. There are so many crazy people about, and one can never tell what they will do. Then there are so many murders committed, and the police never catch the murderers," and I finished with a sob that would have broken up an audience of blase critics. She gave a sudden and convulsive start, and I knew my first stroke had gone home. It was amusing to see what a remarkably short time it took her to get up from her chair and to whisper hurriedly: "I'll come back to talk with you after a while." I knew she would not come back and she did not.

When the supper-bell rang I went along with the others to the basement and partook of the evening

Reader Reviews

Average Rating of 4.8 from 6 reviews: *****
2011.07.26
ThomasMutate
*****

Awesome, she was the bravest heroine ever.

2011.04.03
McMurphy
*****

A remarkable story told by an extremely courageous young lady. Her efforts were an attempt to expose the machinations of an abusive institutional system that centered on funding and budget manipulations. Padding patient roles with innocent victims to induce funding increases was common, as was vendor kickbacks when premium prices were charged for spoiled food, substandard commodities, shorted coal deliveries, etc.. Ms Cochrane eventually saw the cover-up efforts and felt helpless against them. I contend that MS Cochrane was in far more danger than she had realized. Had she been exposed, she would have vanished like some of the women she sought to contact later. Dr Dent would have made sure of it! After the fact, I imagine that Dr Dent and any corrupt commissioners enjoyed the budget increases as they could shift that much more to their own pockets. Ms Cochrane put them on the run, however, and had an effect. An incredible young lady to say the least.

2011.03.21
charlotte
*****

i love nellie bly! ever since 5th grade when i went to the newseum(best place ever)ive been reading about her nonstop!

2010.04.04
Rose
*****

I find this woman extremely interesting, I had gone to the newseum in DC and saw the 4D movie with her in it, now I cannot stop reading about her experience, SO SO interesting.

2010.01.14
nelliejm
****.

A true life account of this journalist who got herself committed to a New York insane asylum to expose the atrocities and injustices suffered by the mentally ill. It is a very interesting study into the life and atitudes of the time. A good read!!

2008.01.05
L-NYC
*****

Let me first say that this website is wonderful.

I came across the name of this author while searching the website www.forgotten-nyc.com. I enjoyed this book a lot. I already recommended it as a good read to many of my friends. I am happy that a person as Ms. Bly, put herself in situations to put the truth out for the public to read and be a part of much needed drastic changes. I am all for women empowerment.


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