20th August 1898. Thomasine Amelia Lean was admitted to Cornwall County Asylum, Bodmin. She had a husband, Henry, and was born in Cornwall. She died on 3rd April 1916, having spent eighteen years in the asylum.
Cornwall County Asylum was founded in 1815. It was later known as St Lawrence’s Hospital and was demolished several years ago. It’s not stated why Thomasine went to the asylum but mental health was not well understood at this time and there could be any number of reasons, physical, mental or social. Often the complaint would be described as something general such as ‘mania’. Asylums have always had a notorious reputation as dreadful places where vulnerable people are locked away and abused. It’s only relatively recently that attitudes towards mental health have changed.