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State Hospitals: Historical Patient Records: Hastings

Historical patient, employee, and student records from Minnesota State Hospitals

Hastings State Hospital

Hastings State Hospital was established as the Fourth State Asylum for the Insane. At its opening in 1900, it served as a transfer asylum, admitting patients from other state hospitals. Its architectural organization was according to the cottage plan, which allowed for a cozier, more "home-like" atmosphere for the patients. It did not admit women until 1944 except for four years starting in 1905. The hospital's name was changed to Hastings State Asylum in 1919 and to Hastings State Hospital in 1937.  It was the first state hospital to discontinue the use of physical restraints for mentally ill patients, to implement regional coordination, and to open a regional service for drug dependency. It was also one of the leading hospitals in terms of developing partial hospitalization, adolescent treatment services, and education programs. 

Hastings State Hospital was closed on May 1st, 1978. All patients were either transferred or discharged to homes or other state hospitals or facilities. The second state veterans home was established on the site of the hospital.

Some patient records for the Hastings State Hospital can be viewed in person at the library. Our full State Hospital Records Request is currently unavailable but we are offering a State Hospital Index Search Request in order to assist researchers in the first stage of their record search.  

Patient Records

To order a state hospital patient index search for an individual visit our State Hospital Records Request.

Patient Card Index, 1900-1978
Information for each patient includes name, file number, address, date committed, birthplace, date of birth, marital status, religion, occupation, diagnosis, and remarks.
MNHS call number: Digital Finding Aid

Patient Record Books, 1900-1962
Summary information for case nos. 1-8492. Information recorded number, name, county, admitted, age, civil condition, occupation, education, religion, habits, nativity, cause predisposing, insane relations, cause exciting, form of insanity, suicidal or homicidal, number of attacks, number of admissions, age at first attack, duration of insanity before admission, whole duration of insanity, time in hospital, discharged, result, and observations.
MNHS call number: 108.D.10.6F-1

Patient Registers and Indexes- Hastings, 1900-1923
Part of the Minnesota Division of Public Institutions Series
Alphabetical index by patient name, and statistical record giving information about the patient's background, a diagnosis, and dates of hospital residence. This series does not include all patients in the date range. 
MNHS call numberDigital Finding Aid

Casebooks, 1900-1909
Case histories containing four pages per case consisting of personal and medical history, mental characteristics, and physical characteristics.
MNHS call number: Digital Finding Aid

Obituary Records, 1900-1977
Chronological record of deaths at the hospital. Information recorded: chronological number, date of death, name of patient, sex, age, civil condition, occupation, nativity, from what county sent, form of disease on admission, number of attacks, number of admissions, case number, date of admission, period of residence, total duration of illness, cause of death, disposal of remains.
MNHS call number: 108.D.10.6F-1

Cemetery Records, 1901-1999
An alphabetical index to burials for 1901-1964, a 1967 survey and plat, correspondence, drawings, interagency agreements, and newspaper clippings. 
MNHS call number: Digital Finding Aid

Aggregated Patient Cards, 1920s-1990s
Part of the Department of Human Services Administrative Records
Aggregated patient index cards from various state hospitals; information includes name, Department of Public Welfare number, birth date, birth place, county of commitment, county of residence, occupation, hospital, hospital case number, social security number, admittance history. Patients may have multiple cards.
MNHS call number: Digital Finding Aid

Note: These records include private information about individuals. Records with private information are closed for 75 years from date of last entry in the record and occasionally 100 years due to sensitive and/or third-party data.  Researchers must apply for permission to use these records.  Click here for more information on accessing restricted records. 

Employee Records

Employee Card Files, 1910s-1950s
​Generally, cards give name, date of birth, date employed, job title(s), salary, and date left employment; and sometimes residence, place of birth, and comments concerning job performance or circumstances of release from employment.
MNHS call number: See the finding aid in the library (Hastings State Hospital).

Minnesota Division of Public Institutions Personnel Service Records- Hastings, 1934-1938.
Cards listing employee name, address, position, salary, brief statement of duties, data on previous state service, education, training, and personal and family information.
MNHS call number: See the finding aid in the library (Social Security Department: Public Institutions Division).

Note: These records include private information about individuals. Records with private information are closed for 75 years from date of last entry in the record.  Researchers must apply for permission to use these records.  Click here for more information on accessing restricted records. 

Other Records

Hospital Highlights, 1944
Hastings, Minn.: Hastings State Hospital, 1944-
v. 1, no. 1- ; Jan. 19, 1944-
MNHS call number: FOLIO RC445.M6 H3

Hospitality, 1952-1961
Hastings, Minn.: Hastings State Hospital
MNHS call number: RC445.M6 H32

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