Toledo State Hospital Archive

This section contains vintage newspaper articles as well as building floor plans, drawings and photographs covering the Toledo State Hospital site and of the Hospital buildings and grounds.


Toledo State Hospital History


The Toledo State Hospital first started taking shape in 1883 when the Ohio General Assembly passed an Act donating 150 acres of land to construct an institution on the corner of Detroit and Arlington in Toledo.


The Toledo Asylum as it was then known was designed by Edward O. Fallis, one of Toledo’s most prominent architects of the time. The Asylum was designed around a detached ward or cottage plan,  consisting of a number of detached wards with larger buildings for the more seriously ill. By 1887, at a cost of under $700,000, the initial building phase had been completed. There were thirty four buildings, twenty of which were cottages that housed the less extreme cases, while six buildings - two infirm wards, two hospitals, and two strong wards - housed those considered more critically insane. The grounds featured man-made lagoons, and numerous buildings including an administration building, a  working farm, an auditorium, a greenhouse, and a chapel. The maximum capacity of the entire project could house 1,800 patients.


The Toledo Asylum for the Insane opened in January of 1888. The first superintendent, Dr. Henry A. Tobey, believed in humane treatment of institutionalized patients. Dr. Tobey believed keeping patients busy and out of doors engaged in useful activities would keep them from dwelling on their problems.


In 1894 the Toledo Asylum for the Insane officially changed its name to the Toledo State Hospital. The Mission Statement and Philosophy of the Asylum read, “The secret of their care and keeping them contented is to have them lead as normal a life as possible, with good clean, healthy surroundings, plenty of nourishing food, and fresh air.”


In the 1950s, the hospital population swelled to 3,500 patients. In the years following, deinstitutionalization led to a dramatic decrease in patient population. The Asylum began moving patients off of the property in the early 1970s. By this time the old buildings had deteriorated and were all destroyed by the early 1990s.


Northwest Ohio Psychiatric Hospital, located on the same site, is the current treatment center and psychiatric hospital in Toledo and is owned and operated by the state of Ohio.


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TSHCRP is a grass roots organization that welcomes donations to support of our efforts to restore the State Hospital cemeteries. Tax deductible donations can be made to NAMI of Greater Toledo. For more details see our Donating page.