ⓘ Letchworth Village

                                     

ⓘ Letchworth Village

Letchworth Village was a residential institution located in Rockland County, New York, in the hamlet of Thiells built for the physically and mentally disabled of all ages, from the newborn to the elderly. Opened in 1911, Letchworth Village at its peak consisted of over 130 buildings spread out over many acres of land. It was named for William Pryor Letchworth, who espoused reform in the treatment and care of the insane, epileptics, and poor children.

February 27, 1950, the first trial case of the polio vaccine in the United States was held to 8-year-old patient with Hilary Koprowski after he tried it on himself. After the patient has suffered no adverse effects, the vaccine was given to more than 19 institutions for children. Out of a total of 20 children, 17 developed antibodies to the virus, and none developed any complications.

The following reports were presented due to lack of funding and improper care of residents, including children, built in the 1920-ies. The accounts showed residents were found without clothes, dirty, and neglected. In addition to rampant abuse among the residents of the institution, the staff also suffer at the hands of colleagues, which included cases of rape.

In 1996, the Institute was permanently closed, and many of its abandoned buildings has serious repair.