Institution Information - Baldovan Asylum

Parish/County: Mains & Strathmartine, Angus

Alternative Names: Institute for Imbecile Children, Dundee; Baldovan Orphanage and Asylum; Baldovan Institution; Strathmartine Hospital

Location Map: Click here to see a historic map showing the institution.

Other institutions: Click here to see a list of Scottish mental health institutions.

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Locating Records for this institution

For people admitted to Scottish Mental Health institutions from 1 January 1858 a record usually survives in the ‘Notices of Admissions by the Superintendent of the Mental Institutions’ which are held by the National Records of Scotland. We are creating an index to these records and can assist you in searching the unindexed period. Search our index here or read more about the project here.

Records kept by the institution are now held by the Dundee University Archive. You can read more about the records they hold for this institution here or contact us and we can assist you to gain access to the records relating to your ancestors.

Text from 1857 Royal Commission Report

"BALDOVAN ASYLUM FOR IDIOTS. Visited 12th October 1855.

This institution, the first of the kind established in Scotland, was opened in 1854, and owes its origin to the philanthropy and exertions of Sir John and Lady Jane Ogilvy. It is situated about two miles from Dundee, and is estimated to afford accommodation for 40 children. It is supported partly by subscriptions and donations, and partly by the payments on account of the children. Both sane and idiot children are admitted, but they are placed in different departments of the house, and do not associate together. The number of idiots, at the time of our visit, was 12; that of sane children 13. The rate of board varies with the accommodation, but the lowest rate for idiots, is 5s. a week. An arrangement was proposed to be entered into, with the Directors of the Edinburgh Idiot Asylum, by which all the boys should be transferred to Edinburgh, and only girls be retained at Baldovan, the object being to do away with the necessity of providing male teachers. This proposal has not been carried into effect. No boys above twelve years of age are received into the idiot department. The children are well attended to."

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