Massachusetts Correctional Institution-Bridgewater: A Troubled Past

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Once known as MCI-Bridgewater and earlier as the Massachusetts State Farm, the Bridgewater Correctional Complex opened in 1854. It was one of several progressive charitable institutions the state created as a model for communities around the world. However, deteriorating conditions for its residents shadowed Bridgewater's evolution from an almshouse to a prison and hospital for the criminally insane. A century later, it was among the nation's most notorious asylums. Historian Michael J. Maddigan offers a riveting examination of this infamous history, including the inspiration for state-sponsored welfare, moral and legal challenges and the experiences of the people who lived and worked there.
ISBN: 9781467139137
Format: Paperback
Publisher: The History Press
State: Massachusetts
Series: Landmarks
Images: 93
Pages: 176
Dimensions: 6 (w) x 9 (h)
Historian Michael J. Maddigan has been engaged in research, writing and historic preservation for more than thirty years. He is the author of twelve previous books, including Nemasket River Herring: A History, Images of America: Middleborough, Onset and Point Independence, Spiritualist Onset: Talking with the Dead by the Sea and Muttock: Middleborough's Revolutionary Village. His work is carried in the Middleboro Gazette, for which he has written more than five hundred historical columns; is featured on the blog Recollecting Nemasket; and has appeared in numerous publications. A native of Middleborough, Massachusetts, he is the founder of Recollecting Nemasket, a small publishing press devoted to the history of southeastern Massachusetts. A graduate of Stonehill College, he holds a Master of Arts degree from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University. He currently serves as the chairman of the Middleborough Historical Commission and as a commissioner was responsible for listing South Middleborough in the National Register of Historic Places. He makes his home in a renovated 1863 woolen mill. To learn more about Mike's work, visit
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