Austin State Hospital

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Austin State Hospital
Austin state hospital.jpg
The former State Lunatic Asylum is now the administration building for the Austin State Hospital campus.
Location4110 Guadalupe
Austin, Texas, USA
Coordinates30°18′26.64″N 97°44′13.92″W / 30.3074000°N 97.7372000°W / 30.3074000; -97.7372000Coordinates: 30°18′26.64″N 97°44′13.92″W / 30.3074000°N 97.7372000°W / 30.3074000; -97.7372000
Built1857[citation needed]
ArchitectCharles Payne
Architectural styleClassical Revival
NRHP reference No.87002115
RTHL No.15648
TSAL No.598
Significant dates
Added to NRHPDecember 4, 1987
Designated RTHL1966
Designated TSAL7/20/1999

Austin State Hospital (ASH), formerly known until 1925 as the Texas State Lunatic Asylum, is a 299-bed psychiatric hospital located in Austin, Texas. It is the oldest psychiatric facility in the state of Texas, and the oldest continuously operating west of the Mississippi River.[1] It is operated by the Texas Department of State Health Services.

History (1856-1860)[edit]

The Texas State Lunatic Asylum was chartered by the Texas Legislature on August 28, 1856. The Act set aside $50,000 in U.S. bonds for the construction of a suitable building. The Governor was authorized to appoint a commission of three men to select a site of between 50 and 100 acres for the asylum, and to appoint a physician to serve as Superintendent at a salary of $2,000 per year and $10,000 in U.S. bonds was set aside for operations of the facility.[2] Gov. Elisha M. Pease appointed Dr. J. C. Perry as the first Superintendent on May 27, 1857.[3] He was replaced by Dr. C. G. Keenan on February 13, 1858.[3]

Dr. Beriah Graham Superintendency (1860-1861)[edit]

Sam Houston was elected governor in 1859 and appointed Dr. Beriah Graham as Superintendent on January 9, 1860.[3] It was during Dr. Graham's tenure that the Main Building was completed and opened for patients on March 11, 1861.[3] Five days later, Gov. Houston resigned, and his successor, Gov. Edward Clark, re-appointed Dr. Keenan. Dr. Keenan served for about seven months until a new governor was elected later that year.

Dr. J. M. Steiner Superintendency (1861-1865)[edit]

Gov. Francis Lubbock appointed Dr. J. M. Steiner as Superintendent on November 1, 1861.[3]

Support organizations[edit]

Austin State Hospital's Volunteer Services Council (VSC) is a 501(c)(3) corporation. The VSC conducts fundraiser and donation programs and helps build community awareness about mental illness and the role of Austin State Hospital in the treatment of mental illness.



  1. ^ Services, Texas Department of State Health. "The Texas Department of State Health Services - Austin State Hospital". Retrieved 2017-04-07.
  2. ^ "Texas Lunatic Asylum". Texas State Gazette. November 22, 1856.
  3. ^ a b c d e Clay, W. J. (1904). Statistical Report 1904. Austin, Texas: Von Boeckmann-Jones. p. 190.

External links[edit]