Medicine: Manteno Madness

On a flat plain 48 miles south of Chicago lie 60 squat red-brick buildings. They house the 5,500 insane patients and 760 employes of Manteno State Hospital. Finished in 1937, this dreary-neat plant boasts many a modern improvement, including special wells, tapping a limestone water-table 17 feet underground, which supply the hospital with water. Life at Manteno rolled along with the quiet, machinelike monotony common to State institutions until one day last August, when a half-dozen patients complained of diarrhea.

Hospital doctors examined them, reported them to the Board of Health as dysentery cases. Next day the number had tripled, and State...

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