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Indiana Commission on Public Records

ICPR > State Archives > Collections > Central State Hospital Collection: Index > Collection Description Collection Description

Access: Due to HIPPA regulations and Indiana State Law, all mental health records are considered confidential. If a patient is still living he or she may sign a release granting permission for copies of the records. Family members may request information from a deceased patient's records only after establishing a clearly documented relationship. Please e-mail the State Archives for further information.

Note: When sending an email to the Indiana State Archives, please be sure to include a very clear subject heading, i.e, Civil War, Soldier's Home, Hospital Records, Morton Telegrams, etc. Emails without a clear subject heading may be mistaken as spam or a potential virus and be filtered out automatically. If you have not received an initial response from the Indiana State Archives within a few weeks, please resubmit your request.

  • Central State Hospital Annual Reports, 1845-1994

    Includes: patient care procedures, patient statistics, causes and treatments of mental illness, physical plant improvements, budgets and financial transactions; post-1880 reports include medical research records.

  • Admission Books, 1858-1924

    Includes: patient histories, causes of mental illness, diagnoses, treatments, county of residence, education level, religion, birthplace, by whom committed and supported, effectiveness of treatment, when admitted and discharged.

  • Commitment Papers, 1848-1950

    Records from the county circuit courts giving legal authorization for committal, including statements of insanity from relatives or friends; physicians' diagnoses; extensive information on patient's health, physical appearance, and drug use; patients' personal histories; and certificates of the justice of peace.

  • Community Volunteer Program, 1960-1994


  • Correspondence, 1870-1994

    Includes: acceptance and discharge letters from CSH medical superintendent to patients, county courts, and patients' guardians, 1848-1900; correspondence exchanged between CSH medical superintendents' and county courts; physicians' correspondence to patients and Legislative Visiting Committee, 1890-1937; bulk of 20th-century correspondence dates from 1950-1994 and includes departmental and administrative correspondence.

  • County Books and Petty Registers, 1855-1924

    Includes: patient admission and discharge dates, organized by county and township.

  • Discharge, Subpoena, and Clothing Requisition Papers for CSH Patients, 1848-1900

    Discharge Papers: date of discharge, county discharged, under whose care.

    Subpoena Papers: addressed to relative or friend summoned to testify that the individual in question was indeed insane.

    Clothing Requisitions: level of personal hygiene, clothing patient arrived in, and clothing needed.

  • Records of Disturbed Patients, 1945-1952

    Daily reports detailing patients' complaints and disruptive behavior.

  • Financial and Statistical Reports, 1945-1994


  • Legal Files, 1960-1994


  • Legislative Visiting Committee's Reports on Central State Hospital, 1890-1912

    Includes: investigations of misconduct and patient abuse.

  • Night Watch Books, 1912-1916

    Women's Medical Ward (Sick Hospital): 1914-1915

    Men's Medical Ward (Sick Hospital): 1912-1914: Includes: physicians' instructions detailing drug treatments to be administered by overnight medical attendants; attendants' morning reports to physicians.

  • Patient Master Card File, 1848-1970s

    Includes: patient diagnosis, admittance and discharge dates, marital condition, occupation.

  • Patient Medical Charts (Microfiche), 1930-1970s


  • Photographs and Illustrations, 1900-1990

    Small photo collection, primarily of the medical staff and hospital buildings from the early 1900s and 1960-1990. The Archives and the State Library have several lithographs of the original hospital structures. A much larger collection of Central State Hospital photographs, including patient photographs, are housed at the Indiana Medical Museum, Indianapolis, Indiana

  • Policies, Minutes, Programs, and Manuals, 1940-1994


  • Prescription Books, 1858-1864

    Includes: patient histories, diagnoses, treatments, including drug prescriptions.

  • Psychiatric Nursing Program for Collegiate Schools of Nursing, 1953-1958

    Includes: correspondence, course outlines, student handbooks, CSH nursing program for Depauw students, surveys.

  • Research Reports, 1960-1994


  • Transfer and Recovery Books, 1906-1919

    Books document transfers to Central State's "Sick" hospital for treatment of physical ailments; includes date of transfer and removal, and description of ailment and treatment.

Back to the Central State Hospital Index.