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Changing of an Era
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Kings Park Psychiatric Center
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On September 14th 2008 I brought my 1978 Olympus 35mm camera to KPPC, which is now abandoned, and took these photos. We managed our way into some of the old boarded up houses on the site, and got as close as we could to the Psych Center and snapped a few shots before the authorities caught wind of us and politely asked us to back away. Anyways, it's a modest tribute to a historical place. This particular hospital was in operation from 1885 until 1996. for more info link to this site: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kings_Park_Psychiatric_Center
This article has been viewed 29348 times in the last 6 years
CartLegger: 14th Feb 2009 - 16:35 GMT
Great shots, sean. Been meaning to get in there, but don't have a car. glad its on citynoise!
Incidentally, I am now in love with film. So what type did you shoot there. And where did you get it developed. I like the light saturation, though the colors are a little weak--could be from the developing?
anon (cpe-68-173-181-52.nyc.res.rr.com): 14th Feb 2009 - 16:44 GMT
Thanks! I got them developed at a local CVS, but I doubt it's the developers fault. I'm still getting used to all the different settings on the camera. It's a 30 year old SLR camera. It really makes a photograph more gratifying when you work for it. I don't think I'll ever go digital again.
CartLegger: 15th Feb 2009 - 02:56 GMT
I dig ya, I'm one week in but I ain't turnin back to pixels.
but that said, I still haul a digital point and shoot around to get a preview of what I might have captured on the real camera. But a digital can't do anything with light like real film. I'm with ya man!
hope we can get together sometime with our cameras for some urban adventure. There is a similar site in Staten Island, I've been wanting to explore. You can reach me or Peter @citynoise.org
Peter: 15th Feb 2009 - 17:42 GMT
oh wow, awesome! im really glad you shot some film in there- looks good. this is such a fantastic spot. i really need to get out there sometime, for sure...
Kei.: 16th Feb 2009 - 07:53 GMT
I'm surprised that you guys were allowed to take photos there, last time i tired to do so, a cop came up to me and made me delete all my images. if you don't mind my asking, when did you take these photos?
Sean Hopkins: 16th Feb 2009 - 20:48 GMT
This was just last September. That's messed up that you had to delete your pics! A cop did approach us about being too close to the main building, but surprisingly he didn't exhibit the typical douchebaggery I was expecting.
Michael Glennan: 18th Feb 2009 - 01:55 GMT
Great pics, I beleive that this building is state property. There has been cases of homeless people living in these buildings in the past. With many people facing economic hardships currently, to me it would be nice to develop the building into a homeless shelter or treatment facility for substance abusers. The value of this land is in the many milions of dollars. With the economic stimulus package signed into law by President Obama maybe some money can be set aside to refurbish this property. MG
Leo: 14th Mar 2009 - 21:31 GMT
I want to go when it gets warmer. I can pull my camera out and get started.
Jaliey: 30th Mar 2009 - 05:10 GMT
wouldn't this place be haunted? my friend kind of broke in went inside and he saw the first floor was like new or something. & he told me about the stories & what happened there. so sad.
Caesar: 30th Mar 2009 - 05:27 GMT
What a fantastic post. Kudos. These photos are great, and you guys look very in your element in some of those photos. Thanks for sharing such an exciting adventure!
Cliff: 2nd Apr 2009 - 08:57 GMT
What a great building and history. I'm from Syracuse and friends visited the site earlier this week, I would love to go see for myself. Amazing.
Chris: 19th Apr 2009 - 02:43 GMT
This whole place has such a presence... imagine just looking at old buildings... how exciting is that? But there is something else going on here... and as you spend a little time on your website, you become aware that you are being joined by a feeling almost like a ghost or resident Spirit of the place. I felt the same thing when I visited the Danvers State Hospital site, as well. At first, you are just glancing at a series of interesting pictures; but then, this multipersonal psychic bass note starts to make itself felt... and I think one of the reasons I love to come here and just stay and look for a little while is to tune into that bass note. It is like a bygone collective unconscious. KPPC is still vast, and it takes more than just one visit, viewing all these great photographs, to fully appreciate the work you have done documenting all of it. What an expansive project this has become. Thank you for making this really important contribution to our American History. Right now it is just a collection of photos of old buildings, but in time it will become the history of how we treated members of our great human family. It is a priviledge to come here and rest for a few minutes with invisible surrender and a sense of calm which steps outside language and comprehension. It heals us to be in the presence of something we cannot easily put into words. It stops something inside us from labeling stuff. Again, thank you for this amazing and significant contribution to our collective history. Your website will increase in value as time passes. I am frankly astounded at the precision of the brickwork everywhere present throughout this vast settlement of buildings for the care of the mentally ill. The tunnels, with their curved brickwork - what amounts to miles of it, and the time it must have taken to do all that by hand. Every time I visit this site my appreciation for what you have done deepens. Thank you from Chris in South Portland, Maine.
Sheryl: 28th Apr 2009 - 00:19 GMT
My Grandmother lived here from 1933 to 1994 (?). I never met her. I was just trying to make some visual contact with an unknown past. Interesting stuff.
I also like to revert to film use sometimes. Digital does spoil one for instant gratification.
Sean Hopkins: 28th Apr 2009 - 00:32 GMT
More photos here...
Sheefa Roshan: 28th Apr 2009 - 05:05 GMT
Ya,nice photoes.im very interested on old buildings.but i think it should be rebuilt.there is no use of keeping this building in this condition.it is better to reuse it as we have more need of buildings
anon (pool-141-157-207-176.ny325.east.verizon.net): 9th Jun 2009 - 17:25 GMT
So, can the Long Island Paranormal Society do an investigation there now,or what?
Nikki: 20th Oct 2009 - 02:49 GMT
How do i get into the underground tunnels, preferably ones that arent blocked off after walking like 100 ft. i love it there, even if it didnt have some sort of unworldly presence, i like going through old abandoned places; plus, the fear of getting caught is always a little added fun.
V-san: 2nd Nov 2009 - 16:02 GMT
ON passing through and reading this, I have to say to anaon, the Paranormal society IS doing research. Me an' my friends ran into them while running through the place a few days ago. THey had suits and equipment. It was Awsome, made my day (=
Joyce Derenas: 1st Dec 2009 - 18:46 GMT
Many of my relatives worked here from 1930-ish to1938-ish and I am trying to locate some sort of timeline for all these people. Are there any census or employee records available?
Bldg93: 24th Mar 2010 - 20:05 GMT
Regarding relatives during the 30's. pretty tough one to get info. The Records office at Pilgrim where KPSH records are (some of them). The 1940 US Census Reports - maybe thru ancestry.com will be available 2012. By law, it's a 72 year wait. What's their last names? I could check with some old(er) timers I know.
On the Paranormal - as most everybody knows - try lioddities.com
Yes, nice photos. 35mm is just too inconvenient and slow for results. I also had an OM1 Olympus in the late 1970's. Downside on digital, too noisey or grainy - it seems - in low light.
Jason aka Nightraven: 3rd Jun 2010 - 02:45 GMT
What is that small white building in front of Building 93? What number is it? When was it built? When was it demolished? Anything will be useful. Any info on Buildings C and D would also be greatly appreciated. I am writing a book about KPPC.
KPHistorian: 2nd Jul 2010 - 23:22 GMT
There are actually 2 little structures in front of Bldg 93. Smaller one was the bowling alley. Larger one by the Boulevard was the original clunhouse for patients and employees. Patients downstairs on the first floor. Employees on the second.
KPHistorian: 2nd Jul 2010 - 23:32 GMT
Bldgs D on left built around 1896. And 93 on right. Started
KPHistorian: 2nd Jul 2010 - 23:45 GMT
KPSH Patients' Clubhouse around '67. Bowling Alley behind it.
Paula: 6th Jul 2010 - 20:40 GMT
My name is Paula and I'm 25. I'm trying to find my father. My mother, who is in my life, and him were both patients at Kings Park and also Central Islip. She has almost no information on him even thought they were together for almost five years. My mother's tried to give me all the info she could but her memory is hazy. They would have been patients somewhere between 1980 and 1985. I know she was in and out a lot. He was an addict as was she. She was also an intense pyromaniac. Is there any ex-employee that might know anything? Or at least how I could start looking? My mothers name is Elizabeth "Liz" Mackey and she was in her twenties. My fathers name is either Joseph Donald White or Donald Joseph White. They called him Joe. He was in his forties.
Jason aka Nightraven: 11th Jul 2010 - 00:20 GMT
Thanks for the information on the buildings in front of 93, King. I was able to find out when I visited the museum. Leo was extremely helpful to me. He mentioned your name a few times. I know who you are based on the name you are using, which is the same one for the museum's forum. I've read and heard a lot of good things about you since I began my research for the book. Maybe you can tell me where the library was located. I read that it was along the boulevard and it was built in 1956. Unless that year is for the Smithtown Library at Church Street? Anything you can help me with would be great. Thanks, King.
Paula, the KPPC Records went to Pilgrim State in 1996. Here is the contact information that I have on file:
Susan Alvar, Facility Administrative Services
Paula, you can also post a comment on the KingsParkMuseum.com forum. You'll have to make a profile first. There are a lot of former workers from the hospital that write there and check the posts. Someone might be able to help you out.
Mary Sorrendino: 10th Oct 2010 - 21:53 GMT
This is an amazing site, My brother was here for two years. He was just nine years old when he was placed here. He has many memories that had laied dorment for many many years... After he viewed these photos he was able to unlock some of his past... Thank you
David Prestigiacomo M.H.T.A: 2nd Jul 2012 - 23:35 GMT
Worked at kings park from 1976 to 1986. worked group-4, bldg. L, bldg 21, and bldg 135.worked ward 206 in group 4 bldg 41. Also lived in Home-T bldg 144 staff housing room 206. Was good friends with Vito Campanetto Room 210.Great Place to work. Good people. Miss it alot. rent in Home-T was 25 bucks a month which included electric and water, real bargain...David Prestigiacomo M.H.T.A.
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