ONLINEWhat Remains: The Suitcases of Charles F. at Willard State Hospital

October 14, 2020 $10.00
(Courtesy photo: Jon Crispin Photography)

Through photographs and essays, author Ilan Stavans explores Jewish immigration to America, Jewish individual and collective memory, and mental illness.

In the late 19th century, a poor Yiddish-speaking immigrant from Russia was institutionalized at Willard, the famous psychiatric hospital in Upstate New York, from which he never came out. Charles F. spoke Yiddish with his doctors, he talked to ghosts in Yiddish, etc. Like thousands of other patients, he arrived at Willard, abandoned by his family, with only a few items in three suitcases. The suitcases were taken away from him by the staff and stored in an attic. They stayed there after he died in 1950.

When Willard closed in the late 1990s, after almost 125 uninterrupted years, someone remembered the suitcases. Instead of having them destroyed, they were shipped to a museum storage house. Activists and others found out about them and the suitcases became very famous. Articles were published in multiple publications, starting with The New York Times. In fact, those suitcases have become a battle cry for mental health patients’ rights.

In partnership with William James College

+ More... - Less...
Fact Sheet
Wednesday, October 14, 2020, 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm
$10.00 per person

CJP provides the above links concerning third-party events for your convenience only. CJP has no control over the content of the linked-to websites or events they describe, and accepts no responsibility for the websites, including any advertising or products or services on or available from such sites, or for any loss or damage that may arise from your attending, or registering to attend, the described events. If you decide to access any of the third-party websites linked to below, you do so entirely at your own risk and subject to the terms and conditions of use for such websites and event attendance. CJP is not responsible or liable to you or any third party for the content or accuracy of any materials provided by any third parties. All statements and/or opinions expressed in the linked-to materials or at the described events, and all commentary, articles and other content provided at the third-party websites or at the events, are solely the opinions and the responsibility of the persons or entities operating the linked-to websites and events. The inclusion of any link on this website does not imply that CJP endorses the described event, or the linked-to website or its operator. MORE

More From...

More In...