5.5” x 12” notebook with 154 handwritten pages that appear to be a Nurses log from a hospital ward in New Jersey. The dealer I bought this from told me that he thought it was from Overbrook Asylum in Essex County, NJ, and he has written that in pencil on the inside cover.
The log dates from December 18, 1956 to May 6, 1957. Most of the patients appear to have mental disorders, but this ward appears to be for physical conditions as well as mental disorientation. There are many mentions of patients expiring, and notes on patient condition including temperament, temperature, and various maladies. The writing belongs to more than one person in the diary, and was probably made by various nurses on duty. All the pages are used and it is legible and in overall condition.
Some examples of the entries are below. The initials replace a person’s name.
A.H. His housekeeper visited him early Saturday and again on Sunday. On Saturday afternoon, she was even tempered when she informed his physician that his mind was all right until he was sent to the Orange Memorial and their treatment affected his mind. ON Sunday she berated ward personnel in the presence of other visitors for presumed inattention to A.H. This patient is demanding, inconsiderate, restless and stubborn.
W. T: He is undernourished, but he has an alert appearance. He says he was brought here about two weeks ago because “of an infraction with the law.”
C.R.: In seclusion this morning. Last night he threatened to kill himself. He is being carefully watched and tranquilizers have been increased in strength. He is aware of everything he does and he appears to be going through a manic phase. Temperature normal this morning, though through the entire day it was slightly elevated. He ate a good breakfast this morning.
E. H had a fight at 10:30 while in a room with patient T. He began to beat T. After being separated, it was observed that T had two superficial scratches over left scapula. Questioned this morning, both patients are too much out of contact to recall the incident. Both patients are easily irritated; physically, they are quite feeble.
R.C.: Home on pass yesterday, care of son who feels that patient has become more depressed and fearful since admission here. The patient is fairly well oriented and he is much clearer mentally that most patients on this ward. He has made a good adjustment at home. A housekeeper will supervise him.