|Provincial Lunatic Asylum|
|Type||Provincial Psychiatric Hospital|
By the end of Season 5, Dr. Roberts has returned to the Provincial Lunatic Asylum from the Toronto Hospital for the Incurables. This has never been made entirely clear, though loosely referenced in Investigating Murdoch Mysteries, the Official Companion Book to the Series – "The tragic demise of Dr. Roberts leaves a place open at the Provincial Lunatic Asylum, which Ogden seizes, carving out a place for herself countering the misdiagnosis and general societal misunderstanding of women."
The term "asylum" is now associated in popular culture with Victorian Gothic Revival architecture and imaginary ghostly appearances, but at the time, these institutions were founded as benevolent places of refuge. Over time, however, many of these institutions succumbed to chronic overcrowding and shortage of staff. Subsequently for a dark period of time, they became something akin to warehouses for the containment of the insane, where violence was an everyday reality and medical care was scarce. (See ep.813 )
The 27 acres of land on the Queen Street site has been dedicated as space for treating mental illness for over 150 years, initially as the Provincial Lunatic Asylum. Throughout the years there have been numerous name changes – the Asylum for the Insane, Toronto (1871-1907), Hospital for the Insane, Toronto (1907-1919), "999 Queen Street", and the Queen Street Mental Health Centre (1966-1998) and finally CAMH since 1998. The site was a provincial psychiatric hospital operated by the Government of Ontario until 1998 when the provincial psychiatric hospitals began to be transformed into public hospitals.
Dr. Joseph Workman was the asylum’s medical superintendent from 1853 to 1875 and Dr. Daniel Clark from 1875 to 1905.
In 1998, The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) was formed from the merger of the Queen Street Mental Health Centre, the Clarke Institute of Psychiatry, the Addiction Research Foundation, and the Donwood Institute. In 2001, a vision and master plan outlined the transformation of the Queen Street site into an ‘urban village’ – an integrated community, weaving together a mix of CAMH buildings with non-CAMH land uses, including parks and new through streets, into the fabric of the City of Toronto.