Danvers State Hospital Galleries

1874-1878 Kirkbride Complex  313,000 sq. ft. and 1100' length

Bradlee's finished, original unaltered design stood for 19 years (1878-1897). 

Modifications post 1897. 


  • 1897- compatibly designed, three story brick annexes to the ends of high security wings A and J, presumably to house additional chronic patients.

  • 1902 - one story brick Surgery Building with hipped roof and segmental arched windows to the front of A.

  • 1926 - compatibly designed, three story brick hydrotherapy units to the rear of B and I.

  • 1921 - three-story glazed sun-porches across the fronts of B and I.

  • 1932 - three-story glazed sun-porches across the fronts of C and H.

  • 1932 - one story plus high basement Kitchen/Cafeteria Annex in the Renaissance Revival style with arcaded fenestration to the rear of E.

  • The Kirkbride Complex lost the upper stages of its central tower (removed April 1970 due to structural problems) and a porte-cochere to the right of the main entrance (removed ca. 1920 for addition of a stair tower).

1898 Gray Gables

Gray Gables was constructed twenty years after the hospital opened as a residential facility for nurses. It was the second such facility in the state. This was a Queen Anne style building, 3½ stories and had a Tuscan columned verandah. Minor alterations include the addition of stair towers to the lateral ends.

1904-1933 Repair Shops 

A brick two-story building was constructed behind Kirkbride in two stages. It is called by various names such as Repair Shop, Machine Shop, Paint Shop, and O.T. Unit. It was likely used as a space where general repairs could be performed in part by patients as part of their treatment, and in part by staff.

1906 Female Tubercular Building

This was erected adjacent to the summer house for the day-time treatment of tubercular patients. At some unknown date, it was converted for use as an Art Cottage. It was a simple one story, wood frame structure with a T-shaped plan. 

1906 Male Tubercular Building

Identical to Female Tubercular Building. At some unknown date it was converted for use as a Music Cottage.

1908-1927 Garage 

A one-story brick garage was constructed behind Kirkbride in 1908; a shed-roofed extension was added in 1927.

1912 Old Laundry 

Also behind Kirkbride was a two-story laundry building with a T-­shaped plan. 

1921/1929 Head House/Pump House 

Two small, interconnected, one-story concrete block buildings were constructed behind Kirkbride in the 1920s to improve and increase the water supply.

1927 Male Nurses Home 

Predating the Female Nurses Home by only a few years, this dormitory was even simpler in form and detail with few references to any archit­ectural style. It was a 23 bay, three-story brick building.

1930 Female Nurses Home 

This was a brick, Colonial Revival style dormitory was built to replace Gray Gables. The 18-bay building was three stories from a raised basement to a gable roof, is typical of state hospital construction in the 1920s and 1930s. Later used for administrative functions.

1948 Sewerscreen House 

Similar in scale, function and importance to the Head and Pump Houses was the 1948 brick sewerscreen house.

1955 Bonner Medical Building 

The Bonner Building was a late addition to the hospital; it was named after Dr. Clarence A. Bonner Superintendent (1927-53). Built as a complete surgical facility, it was a 31 bay, four-story, brick building rising from a full basement.

1955 Our Lady of the Hill Chapel

This modem, one-story brick structure was built to serve Catholic patients.

1960 Water Tower 

At some time in the mid-26th century, perhaps when the reservoir was filled, a standard metal water tower was constructed behind Kirkbride.

1964 St. Luke's Chapel 

Built to serve patients of the various Protestant faiths, St. Luke's was a modem, one-story brick structure with a steeply pitched gable roof.

Covered Stairway

Date unknown; a covered wooden stairway with an open-wall, gazebo like entrance facing the rear of Kirkbride, leads north down Hathorne Hill toward the hospital's main entrance on Maple Street. Although an exact date is not known, its appear­ance and the known dates of buildings to which it leads, suggests construction in the late 19th century. 


Eight staff cottages ranging in dates from ca. 1850 (predating hospital construction) to 1932. They were all closely related in form and detail to contemporary residential suburban development. 


1897 Hennery 

The Hennery was a series of low wood frame sheds. 


1902 Grove Hall 

Grove Hall was constructed in 1902 to house male patient who worked in the extensive dairy facilities. located in the field below (north). Con­structed between 1905 and 1950, these barns and storage sheds were razed in 1980. Grove Hall itself is a 2½ story brick structure. It was later used as a detoxification center for the North Shore.

1917 Slaughter House 

The Slaughter House was a small square building constructed of concrete block, it was reportedly built by patients. 

1919 Service Building 

A two-story brick and concrete service building was constructed near the hospital entrance in 1919. Its original use is presently unknown.

1922 Salvage Yard

Was a series of low, wood frame, shed roof structures. 


1924 Power House

In 1924 , the hospital built its own power plant at the base of Hathorne Hill which is a two story brick and concrete structure with a characteristic smokestack. 


1924 Trestle 

North of the Power House and adjacent to the old B and M Railroad is a concrete trestle which was likely used as a spur supplying the Power House with coal.

1924 Vegetable Storage Barn 

With the destruction of the dairy complex in front of Grove Hall, this was one of the only early farm buildings remaining on the hospital grounds. It was a large two story wood frame structure.

1931 Farm Hall 

Constructed almost thirty years later than Grove Hall, Farm Hall was probably used for similar purposes. It was a 2½ story brick structure.

1950's Tractor Shed, Farm Garage, Implement Shed, Hay Barn

Constructed in the 1950's, these were one-story utilitarian sheds of corrugated metal. 

1965 New Laundry 

The laundry is a large, utilitarian, one-story brick building. It also serviced Metropolitan State Hospital (1930s) and the Fernald School in Waltham as well as Danvers State Hospital.

Cini, M.M. (1984) National Register of Historic Places Nomination Form


The five buildings buildings below were adjoined but individually named. 


1903 Lee Building two story, wood frame structure.  


1903 Harrington Building two story, wood frame structure.  

1903 Carey Building two story, wood frame structure.  

1903 Goldsmith Building  two story, wood frame structure.  

1903 Gorton Building two story, wood frame structure.  

1903 Power Plant separated from the main building the Colony had its own power plant which was a one story brick and concrete structure with a characteristic smokestack. 

1903 Cottage #8 separated from the main building, but similar in form and detail to contemporary residential suburban development. 

1903 Cottage #9 separated from the main building, but similar in form and detail to contemporary residential suburban development. 

1903 Storage Garage separated from the main building, a one story wood frame structure. 

John Gray