Howard Place

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Howard Place


This is a very historic Colonial home on Sockanosset Road, built in the 1700's, occupied for years as a farm house, purchased by the State and was, until about the year 1893, from then on used as the residence for the Chaplain of the State Institutions, whom it was thought, should be placed near the Reform School for Boys, where his appearance and teaching would have a salutary effect on the minds of the growing youths.
I understand that the Chaplain used to hold Sunday School classes for the boys at Sockanosset, and in those days all of the boys were transferred from the station just below the house, and the good parson had also to see them when they came and when they left
After the departure of the Reverend James H. Nutting, this house was occupied by Charles H. Ewer, who died in office at the State Institutions. I understand since that. time this house has been used for the farmer at the Sockanosset School, and I believe at the present time is being utilized as a place for the employees of the Boys' School.
Since this photograph has been taken, I have learned that this house was formerly known as the Howard Place.
Excerpt from: Scrapbook, c. 1930 of properties at Howard (Accession 1998-121)

It was the infusion of large amounts of federal Works Progress Administration (WPA) funds that dramatically altered the appearance of the Howard complex and permitted, if briefly, appropriate physical accommodation for patients, inmates, and attendants. Overcrowding has been a chronic problem at Howard and only the large-scale construction program of the WPA could solve it. Despite the building effort of the 1920s, in 1933 the State Hospital, with accommodations for 1,550, housed 2,235 and was labeled the most overcrowded mental hospital in the northeast.
Excerpt from: Historical Preservation Commission’s Statewide Historical Preservation Report P-C-1 on Cranston, 1980

See also:
Cranston: National Register of Historic Places, 1984

Report of the Committee of State Charities and Corrections Upon the State Institutions at Cranston, Made to the Senate, at its January Session, 1883

Report of the Joint Special Committee on the State Asylum for the Insane Made to the General Assembly at its January Session, A.D. 1868

Rhode Island Historical Preservation Commission:  Statewide Preservation Reports, 1975 - 1982

Article Written by William F. Gleason, M.D....on a State School for Feeble-Minded Children, 1907

Report of State Commission on Public Welfare Institutions, 1943

Special Legislative Commission to Study the Howard Complex records, 1970-1972

Annual Report of the State Hospital for Mental Diseases, 1922-1935

Mother's Aid Annual Report of the State Public Welfare Commission to the General Assembly, 1923 - 1935

State Home and School Annual Report, 1898-1935

External Related Resources:
Rhode Island Historical Society: Rhode Island State Institutions Records, 1839-1968 (bulk 1885-1944)

Missouri State Archives exhibit- Quest for a Cure: Care and Treatment in Missouri's First State Mental Hospital


Accession 1998-121 - Scrapbook of [Photographs], c. 1930 of properties at Howard (Cranston)


Rhode Island State Archives


c. 1930


Copyright is in the public domain unless otherwise specified. We reserve the right to restrict reproduction of materials due to preservation concerns.





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Rhode Island. State Public Welfare Commission, "Howard Place," in Virtual Exhibits, Item #817, (accessed October 15, 2019).