April 14, 1845 The Pennsylvania State Lunatic Hospital is established.
1848 Construction is started with John Haviland as the architect.
April 7, 1849 The cornerstone of the Main Building is laid by Governor William F. Johnson.
February 14, 1851 John Curwen is elected superintendent  at the first meeting of the hospital trustees.
October 1, 1851 The hospital is opened to the public.
October 13, 1851 The first patient is admitted to the hospital.
1853 Dixmont and Dorothea Dix Library buildings are built.
1856 Dam and Water Works are built in the ravine.
1859 The hospital barn is burned down by an irate patient.
1865 A smallpox epidemic breaks out at the hospital.
1867 The Fan house and storage building are built behind the Main Building.
1871 Hypodermic injections and anticonvulsant drugs are first used for sleeplessness.
1873 The wash house is destroyed by fire.
1874 The Gas Works is built.
1875 The Steward's residence is built. (This building is later used as the Gatehouse)
July 8, 1880 Margaret A. Cleaves is elected as the first female physician.
February 14, 1881 Jerome Z. Gerhand is appointed the new superintendent.
September 1, 1883 Jane Kimmel Garver is appointed "physician in medical control of female patients".
1887 The laundry / powerhouse, carpenter's shop, paint shop, and North & South Branch buildings are built.
1891 Henry L Orth is appointed as the new superintendent.
November 1, 1891 The hospital passes the 1,000 patient mark.
1893 Addison Hutton is hired to rebuild the hospital following the "Cottage Plan".
May 1895 The new Administration Building is completed.
1900 The Infirmary Building is built.
1902 The Kitchen & Bakery buildings are built.
1903 The Morgue is built.
1904 The Cold Storage Plant is built.
1905 Male Wards 3 & 4, 5 & 6, and 7 & 8 are built.
1906 The Female Nurses Home is built
1908 Female Wards 3 & 4, 5 & 6, and 7 & 8 are built.
1910 The Sewage Plant, Commissary, and Sewing Room are built. A dairy herd is destroyed as a test for tuberculosis.
1911 The Solarium is built.
1913 The Chapel is built.
February 15 1914 The Chapel is officially opened.
1916 One of the hospital's barns is struck by lightning and destroyed.
December 1, 1917 Edward M. Green is appointed the new superintendent.
1919 342 cases of the flu are reported.
May 31, 1921 The name of the hospital is changed from Pennsylvania State Lunatic Hospital to Harrisburg State Hospital.
1921 Drug addicts are committed to Pennsylvania state hospitals for the first time.
1922 The school of licensed attendants is established.
March 8, 1927 The Ice House is destroyed by fire.
1928 The Married Employees Building is built.
1930 The Dairy Barn, Dairyman's Cottage, Horse Stable, and Physician's Residence is built. A second floor is added to the Infirmary.
1934 The Hospital for the Physically Ill and the Blacksmith Shop is built. Howard K. Petry is appointed superintendent.
Mid 1930s Insulin shock therapy treatment is introduced.
1935 The chicken barn is built.
1938 The new Power Plant and Tubercular Building is built. An addition is built onto the Central Kitchen.
March 1941 Electroshock treatment is introduced
1947 The hospital passes the 3,000 patient mark.
1951 The Admissions and Hillcrest Buildings are built.
1952 Psychotropic drugs are introduced.
December 16, 1954 Hamblen C. Eaton is appointed superintendent.
1957 The Eaton Building is built.
1958 Staff residences on hospital grounds are discontinued.
1966 The Work Advancement Center is built. Outpatient services are discontinued with the passage of the Mental Health Act.
1969 S. Philips Laucks is appointed superintendent.
1972 Peonage and farming is discontinued at the hospital because of a U.S. Middle Court decision.
1974 John B. Logan is appointed superintendent.
1979 Ford S. Thompson is appointed superintendent.
1988 John Flatley is appointed superintendent.
1999 Several buildings, including the Administration Building, are used for the set of the movie Girl, Interrupted.
January 27, 2006 Governer Edward G. Rendell closes Harrisburg State Hospital. A short time later the buildings are converted into offices for other state agencies.
2008 Filming of the movie Another Harvest Moon is to take place at the hospital.

 

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