Dr. Richard Dewey followed Dr. James McBride and was the Medical Superintendent of the Milwaukee Sanitarium from 1895-1919. He was internationally known and respected leader in psychiatry. He introduced the "cottage system" of care in which patients were cared for in smaller, self contained rooms, or even in cottages. He wanted his patients to feel relaxed and more "at home". This was in stark contrast to the accepted methodology of care for those suffering from mental illness. They were housed in large builds, sometimes many in a room with minimal individual care and treatment. Furthermore, he inaugurated a system of training for the attendants who cared for the patients. Prior to this, only doctors were trained and those who worked under them did what they were told and were not empowered, or trained in mental health care and management. Finally, he purchased 10 acres of land for the sanitarium and built five new buildings while he was Medical Superintendent.
Jon Van Beckum, Archivist
Aurora Psychiatric Hospital Archives
Please credit Aurora Health Care as the source of this material.
Richard Dewey, Dewey, cottage system