Administering Seacliff Lunatic Asylum
This Album contains selected biographical information about Frederic Truby King in his role as the Medical Superintendent of Seacliff Lunatic Asylum (later Seacliff Mental Hospital). He was the Medical Superintendent from 1889 to 1921.
The Medical Superintendent's Outwards Letterbooks have letters to suppliers of goods and services as well as letters to patients' family or friends informing them of the patients' progress.
Truby King would also regularly write to report to the Inspector General of Asylums in Wellington on various matters relating to the administration of Seacliff Lunatic Asylum.
This Album contains selected letters illustrating some aspects of Truby King's work and personality. The selection of letters relate to the role of the asylum, losing weight, motherhood, life in the colonies and the management of the poultry farm at Seacliff. Truby King's interests in agricultural matters had some influence on his ideas about child rearing.
Other aspects of administration included in this Album are pages from the Seacliff Staff Register, in particular showing the appointment of Dr Eleanor Baker as Assistant Medical Officer. The pages from the Staff Register shows who worked at Seacliff, their various roles and how much staff were paid.
Truby King would also submit his annual report to the Inspector General of Asylums for all New Zealand. The Annual Reports of the Inspector General of Asylums for New Zealand are published in the Appendices to the Journals of the House of Representatives of New Zealand (AJHRs). They contain the reports of the individual Medical Superintendents for each lunatic asylum in New Zealand and the reports of the Official Visitor to each asylum. The Official Visitor is similar to an inspector and would report on the management of asylum as well as the welfare of the patients. He also investigated any problems or complaints patients had. The AJHRs can be consulted at large public libraries.
Digital images of Medical Superintendent's Letterbooks
Some of the digital images of letters from the Medical Superintendent’s Letterbooks may be difficult to read because the copies of the letters in the Letterbooks were produced using the process of letterpress copying. This technology has resulted, over time, in the ink fading, blurring around the edges of the hand writing and because of the thinness of the pages, some show through of information from subsequent pages.
For more information see the Wikipedia articles on Seacliff Lunatic Asylum and Frederic Truby King as well as the biographical essay for Truby King from the Dictionary of New Zealand Biography.
A biography of Frederic Truby King, In a Strange Garden: the life and times of Truby King, by Lloyd Chapman, is available online on the New Zealand Electronic Text Centre's website.
Size: 7 items
(36 items total)