Sam Newlund (Part 2)
Minneapolis Star Tribune Reporter, who produced, with Photographer Earl Seubert, an exposé in the 1960s about conditions at Faribault State Hospital
(Run time 2:30)
So I went down to Parsons, Kansas, which was... had a close affiliation with Menninger Clinic. And I spent some time there, and I spent some time also at a place, a State Hospital in Winfield, Kansas, and came back and wrote a comparison story.
And, of course, guess what? Minnesota compared pretty badly.
So that was... and then, while I'm on this history, I should point out, too, that shortly after my trip to Kansas, at least one, I'm not if there was more than one or not, but a legislative committee decided to go to Kansas and look the place over, because I had done that.
And it was a subcommittee, I think, of House Appropriations that covered mental health and retardation, among other things. They went back... came back with a glowing account. And that helped to bring about some improvements in the system. Governor Rolvaag was very, very much involved in pressing the Legislature to improve and to... and to provide more staff.
There were then six or seven hospitals that had retarded people. And he was quite passionate about it. And he took some bus trips around the state and visited, I think, all of the institutions that had retarded people, State institutions, rather. And I went along on most of those bus trips.
The upshot eventually on the actual sequence of events is a little bit fuzzy in my mind right now, but I do know that at one point, I think it was in 1965, the Legislature did agree to appropriate enough money to add 400 and some, whatever it was, new positions at the... at the institutions.
And that was considered quite a... quite an improvement. Of course, people like Molly you mentioned her name a moment ago...