CSH Superintendents & Directors

Dr. Chastain Caldwell Forbes: The First Superintendent


Dr. C. C. Forbes

Chastain Caldwell Forbes was born in Hopkinsville, Kentucky on April 9, 1830. He married Emily McFerran on January 7, 1857 and from 1861-1865 served in the Company S, Confederate States Hospital Stewards Infantry Regiment as an enlisted Hospital Steward during the United States Civil War. Emily would later give birth to their first child Caroline in 1870. In May of 1873 Governor Preston H. Leslie appointed Dr. Forbes as the first superintendent of the newly established Fourth Kentucky Lunatic Asylum near Anchorage, Kentucky. His wife Emily would serve as the first Matron. While in service Emily gave birth to Dr. Forbes second child, Charles Caldwell in 1874. Under Forbes tenure the Asylum grew and prospered until he resigned his position in 1879.

In 1883, Forbes accepted a position as superintendent of the newly opened Arkansas Lunatic Asylum, in Little Rock, and served there until resigning in 1885 due to failing health. Dr. Forbes passed away on March 15, 1898 at the age of 68 in Chicago Illinois at the home of his daughter Caroline, and was later laid to rest in Glasgow Municipal Cemetery in Glasgow Kentucky.

Dr. Robert H. Gale – The Second Superintendent


From the Courier-Journal (Louisville, Kentucky), Dated May 3, 1884


Ex-Superintendent of the Central Lunatic Asylum Expires Yesterday Morning at New Liberty, In Owen County.

Dr. Robert H. Gale

Intelligence of the death of Dr. Robert Hardin Gale, late Superintendent of the Anchorage Lunatic Asylum, reached the city yesterday. He expired at the residence of his daughter, Mrs. J. C. Revill, near New Liberty, in Owen county, and by a remarkable coincidence on the same day on which his resignation as Superintendent of the Asylum was to take effect.

The death of Dr. Gale was caused by cancer of the stomach, a disease which he had been suffering for several months. Some years ago he was attacked with a combination of kidney and liver ailments, and had suffered with it ever since, thought it was the disease first mentioned which proved fatal. He had been ill for some time previous to the investigation of the charges which had been made against him as Superintendent, and the fatigue and anxiety which that induced hastened his demise. He had been brought almost to death’s door several times within the past two months, but wonderful pluck and his once rugged constitution enabled him to rally each time. Still it was evident that he was sinking fast, and a little over a week ago he quit the asylum forever, and journeyed, by slow degrees, to the residence of his daughter, to breathe his last, near the scenes where he was born and where he passed his early manhood.

He was born in Owen County, on the 25th of January 1828. His father, a successful physician as was his son, was of Scotch-English extraction, and a long resident of the county. Under him he read medicine, after first receiving a liberal education at Transylvania University, at Lexington where he graduated with distinction when very young. In 1848 he received his professional diploma, after a brilliant course of study at Jefferson Medical College, of Philadelphia.

He began the practice of medicine at Covington, where he was not long in building up a leading practice. Elected a staff officer of the Cincinnati Commercial Hospital, he served one year with that institution, but at the close acceded to the wishes of his family and returned to Owen County, where he acquired a brilliant reputation as a surgeon and built up a lucrative practice. Such a man as he could not well keep out of politics, even if his inclinations had not lured that way, and before he was 25 years old he had been twice elected Probate Judge, and in 1859 represented Owen in the Legislature, where he won a brilliant record. The war breaking out, his sympathies led him to the South, and enlisting in the armies of the Confederacy he served as a surgeon in the regiment of Col. D. Howard Smith, remaining until his failing health drove him from the field.

Removing to this city, Dr. Gale had scarcely begun the practice of his profession when he was appointed surgeon of the Short-line railroad. The company wanted a man who was a physician enough to dress wounds, with brains and legal knowledge sufficient to adjust and provide for any claims for damages growing out of accidents, and be admirably fulfilled these requirements. This was in 1873, and a yer later he was appointed surgeon of the Paducah road. In 1876 he was elected Secretary of the American Mutual Beneficial Association of Physicians, and for two years had served on the Judicial Committee of the Code of Ethics in the American Medical Association. He was elected President of the Board of Medical Officers of the City Hospital, 1878, having been on the staff since 1876. He remained in this position till 1879, when Governor Blackburn appointed him Medical Superintendent of the Anchorage Asylum.

Central Kentucky Lunatic Asylum. C. 1880

In 1846 Dr. Gale was married to Miss Mary C. Green, who died in 1880. A few weeks ago he was again united in marriage to Mrs. Susan Bryant, a well-known lady residing near Bloomfield, in Nelson county. Three children—one son and two married daughters–survive him, he having had eight by his first wife.

During his superintendency of the asylum he effected great improvements. Accommodation for the patients were increased, the grounds were extensively improved and beautified, and a great saving was made in the expenditures of the institution. He built the branch railroad from the station to the asylum, by which a vast saving was made in the cost of handling freights, and inaugurated many other important changes. His administrative ability was one of his decided characteristics, and the government of the institution was never in more capable hands.

Dr. Henry K. Pusey – The Third and Fifth Superintendent

(1884-1888) – (1891-1896)

Dr. Henry K. Pusey

Henry Kinser Pusey was born in Meade County, Ky. on January 2, 1827 to Joel and Ann Pusey, natives of Maryland who had settled in Garnettsville Ky. in 1822. Receiving his education in the local schools of Meade County, Henry developed an interest in medicine and at the age of 18 he began work in the office of prominent Elizabethtown physician Dr. Bryan R. Young. Afterwards he enrolled in Medical Department of the University of Louisville and graduated in 1848, and returned to Garnettsville to practice medicine. Soon after in 1851, he married Sarah McCarty in 1851. For 35 years he led the life of a busy prominent country doctor. Pusey was known for both his professionalism and his influence in the community.

In 1883, Pusey decided to end his practice and to retire to Louisville. Though no sooner had he arrived to his new home than Kentucky Governor J. Proctor Knott appointed Dr. Pusey to become the third superintendent of the Central Kentucky Lunatic Asylum succeeding the late Robert H. Gale. Upon arriving at the Asylum he encountered many difficulties, both with the patients and the facilities. Overcrowding, inadequate water supply and sewage, insufficient heating and fire protection, antiquated lighting provided by kerosene lamps and a $10,000 deficit for the Asylums previous operating year.

Nearly as soon as he took office, Pusey began using a $30,000 appropriation from the Legislature to begin a near complete overhaul of the institution. This was achieved by reorganizing wards, ordering extensive renovations on the buildings and construction on a new reservoir to produce a more adequate water supply. He also received upon request that the per capita of the Asylum be raised to $150 from $135. This allowed for better patient care and more economic stability as well. Pusey’s first term in office is notable for not only the high standards in which he ran the asylum, but also to his generosity and care with which he treated his patients. Knowing nearly every one by name.

Screen Shot 2018-04-20 at 4.06.17 PM
Newspaper Sketch of Dr. Pusey

When Simon B. Buckner was elected Governor of Kentucky in 1887, he called for Dr. Pusey’s immediate resignation, who he then replaced with Dr. Walter J. Byrne for political reasons. Buckner’s act brought massive public outcry due to Dr. Pusey’s successful administrating and respected reputation. The Governor and his associates then began to cast a negative shadow on Pusey’s administration from an economic standpoint. Dr. Pusey immediately published a reply that left nothing to be desired.

Byrne would serve as superintendent until 1891, when newly elected Governor John Y. Brown would reappoint Pusey as superintendent. When Pusey returned to his post, he found the Asylum in roughly the same condition as when he had first taken over in 1884. During Byrnes administration, the state has reduced the patient per day allotment from $150 to $135, as it was when Pusey first took office. Still, with the Asylum underfunded and understaffed, Pusey continued to push for improvements and better patient treatment.


However, due to his failing health, Dr. Pusey would resign his position as superintendent in 1896 and retire to Louisville hoping for improved health. Returning to his birth town of Garnettsville, we would later pass on September 1st of that same year at the home of his daughter and son-in-law after an illness of a few weeks.  In early 1890 the first “open building” ward was constructed and dedicated in close proximity to the main building for use for the male population. With a capacity of 225 patients the building was named in Dr. Pusey’s honor. A testament to the legacy of professionalism and care that Dr. Pusey believed in.

Dr. Walter J. Byrne – The Fourth Superintendent 


Walter Jones Byrne was born in 1824 in Logan County, Kentucky, As a teenage he studied medicine in the office of his grandfather Dr. Walter Jones and later graduated in 1848 from St. Louis University. After graduation he began his practice at Saint Louis hospital before returning to open his own medical practice in Russellville. Later he would marry Ellen Mary Rhea and father three children.

Dr. William J. Byrne

When the War Between the States broke out in 1861, Byrne felt sympathy with the Confederacy but did not enlist until autumn of 1862 due to a family affliction, which resulted in the death of his only daughter Amanda. He rose in the ranks and eventually succeeding notable war doctor John Edward Pendleton as surgeon of the 9th regiment in November 26, 1862 at Murfreesboro.

After the war ended on 1866, Byrne resumed his medical practice in Russellville. When Governor Simon Bolivar Buckner was elected to office in 1887 he appointed Byrne to become the new Superintendent of the Central Kentucky Lunatic Asylum to succeed Dr. Henry K. Pusey. Buckner’s act brought massive public outcry due to Dr. Pusey’s successful administrating and respected reputation. Many Kentuckians believed that Byrnes posting to this office was for political reasons as the Governor and his associates then began to cast a negative shadow on Pusey’s administration from an economic standpoint. This resulted in Byrnes tenure to be somewhat unpopular with many. When John Y. Brown was elected in 1891 he asked Byrne for his resignation and again Dr. Pusey reappointed Superintendent. Upon his resignation he returned to Russellville and resumed his medical practice.

Byrne died at his home on August 1, 1904 and was laid to rest August 5, in Maple Grove Cemetery. Dr. Byrne was survived by his wife Ellen and two sons.

Dr. Hugh Flournoy McNary – The Sixth Superintendent


Dr. Hugh F. McNary

Born in Princeton Ky. on January 15, 1837 to Dr. Thomas Logan and Maria Louisa McNary. Young Hugh McNary received his early education in Princeton private schools, after graduating Columbia College at the age of 17, he began studying medicine in his father’s office. He then entered the University of Louisville Medical School for one year before attending Harvard College and graduating in 1863.hugh-f-mcnary

He began his practice during the War Between the States and was stationed under noted physician Dr. Joshua B. Flint at Army Hospital No. 2 in Louisville, before being transferred to the general hospital in Jeffersonville, After the war ended, Dr. McNary practiced medicine in Louisville until he gave up his practice to accept a position as First Assistant physician at the Western Kentucky Hospital for the Insane in Hopkinsville. After two years in this position he resigned and returned to Princeton and resumed his private practice.

Screen Shot 2018-04-20 at 4.09.13 PM
Newspaper Sketch of Dr. McNary

Governor William O’Conner Bradley appointed Dr. McNary as superintendent of the Central Kentucky Asylum on March 1, 1896 succeeding Dr. Henry Pusey. This appointment came as a surprise to Dr. McNary as the appointment was entirely unsolicited. Under his tenure he instituted new methods of management of the institution were undertaken as well as massive improvements in the buildings.

Screen Shot 2016-11-10 at 1.03.04 PM.png
McNary Cottage

While visiting the home of his sister, Mrs. P.H. Darby in Louisville, Dr. McNary died of a massive heart attack on May 12, 1897 leaving a legacy of growth and high standards at the Asylum. In remembrance of Doctor McNary’s contributions to Central Kentucky Asylum for the Insane, one of the male ward buildings was renamed the McNary Cottage.

Dr. Levin Elliott Goslee – The Seventh Superintendent



Levin Elliott Goslee was born in New Castle, Henry County, Kentucky on February 19, 1838, and was the son of Dr. James and Apphia C. Woolfolk Goslee. He entered upon the practice of medicine in New Castle upon graduation from the University of Louisville Medical School and remained there until 1873, when he moved to Carrollton and began a new practice. On February 15, 1896, Governor William O’Connell Bradley appointed Dr. Goslee first physician at the Central Kentucky Asylum for the Insane in Louisville. He served in that capacity until shortly after the death of Dr. Hugh McNary, when on June 1, 1897, when he was promoted to the office of Superintendent.

Throughout his life he was a member of the Masonic lodge and a life-long member of the Methodist church. He was an active member of the Kentucky State Medical Society, the Mississippi Valley Medical Association and the American Medical Association.

Dr. Goslee would die of heart failure after being in ill health for several weeks. A change for the worse began at noon on January 19, 1900. Later that evening he sank into unconsciousness and would pass a short time later. His funeral services were held at his former home in Carrollton, KY. His wife Mary and seven children-three daughters and four sons survived him.

Dr. Josiah G. Furnish – The Eighth Superintendent


Josiah Graves Furnish was born October 27, 1853, in New Liberty, Owen Co., Ky., the only son of Absalom and Sarah (Gale) Furnish, natives of Gallatin County and Lexington, Kentucky. Josiah received a Collegiate Education in Harrisburg Kentucky, and studied medicine under Dr. W. H. Blanton, in Union, Boone County.

Dr. J.G. Furnish

He graduated from the Ohio Medical College in 1877, and that same year began his own practice in Union. In 1880 he moved to Burlington Kentucky and later attended lectures in Bellevue, N. Y. Returning to Kentucky he began his private practice again.

Screen Shot 2018-03-20 at 10.24.44 PM

In 1893 he was appointed to serve on the State Board of Health of Kentucky. Furnish furthered his involvement with state politics and in 1894 was elected to serve in the Kentucky House of Representatives until 1897. In 1900 he was appointed by Governor J. C. W. Beckham to serve as the Superintendent at the Central Kentucky Asylum for the Insane. Furnish immediately called for the resignation of Dr. M.M. Lively, who had served as interim superintendent after the death of Dr. Levin Goslee. He would serve in that position until July 1904. Furnishes tenure at Central would be filled with charges of patient abuse by ward attendants from 1903 until 1904 leading to several investigations and eventual indictments against the attendants. 

After resigning as superintendent Dr. Furnish would later serve on the Kenton County Board of Health and eventually the director of the Bureau of Pure Food and Drugs for the State Board of Kentucky Health until 1921.

Dr. Malcolm H. Yeaman – The Ninth Superintendent



Malcolm Hodge Yeaman was born on June 24, 1872 in Henderson Kentucky to noted attorney Malcolm Yeaman and his wife Julia Van Pradells Moore. After Graduating from the medical department at Kentucky University in 1894 Dr. Yeaman was appointed to be the third assistant physician at the Eastern Kentucky Lunatic Asylum in Lexington. He would also go on to marry Annie Dupree Elam in 1898.

In June of 1904 Governor J.C.W. Beckham appointed Dr. Yeaman to the post of First Assistant Physician at the Central Kentucky Asylum for the Insane, replacing Dr. C.C. Owens. However, barely a month later in July Yeaman was appointed by the Governor to replace Dr. J.G. Furnish as superintendent. In August of 1906, Dr. Yeaman purchased Beechurst, a private Sanitarium located in Louisville.

Beechhurst Sanatarium

Around June of 1907 Yeaman resigned from the Central Asylum to become the superintendent of Beechurst. He would later return to practicing in his hometown of Henderson. In 1818 he enlisted in WW1 and was stationed at Fort Ontario, NY. after being transferred from Washington D.C. After his discharge from the war, he once again returned to Henderson and resumed his practice of medicine. Doctor Yeaman died at his home in Henderson Ky. in 1945.

 Dr. Louis H. Mulligan – The Tenth Superintendent


Louis Huston Mulligan was born in Fayette County Kentucky on Nov 24, 1869 to Future Kentucky State Representative Judge James Hilary Mulligan and his wife Mary Huston Mulligan. The eldest of 10 children, he attended and later graduated from the Louisville Medical College in 1896, later interning at St. Joseph’s and Good Samaritan Hospitals in Lexington.

Screen Shot 2017-10-19 at 10.01.51 AM
Dr. Louis Mulligan

Throughout his career he served as the First Assistant Physician at the Eastern Kentucky Asylum in Lexington from 1900 until 1907, and then as Acting Superintendent at The Institution for Feeble Minded Children in Frankfort On May 15, 1907 Governor J.C. W. Beckham appointed Dr. Mulligan to become the new Superintendent of the Central Kentucky Asylum, replacing Dr. Malcolm Yeaman after his resignation.

Tendering his resignation three years later in August of 1910, Mulligan traveled to Europe where he spent  two years studying Dermatology in Vienna, Austria. He returned to Louisville in 1913 and opened a dermatological practice. Later he married Sadie Daily Jackson on April 15, 1920, and fathered two children, Grace Kinnard Mulligan and Mary Jackson Mulligan. Upon retirement, he returned to Lexington. While there he redeveloped an interest in photography that he had since his youth and along with Professor Brooks Hamilton formed the Lexington Camera Club in the Fall of 1936.

After retiring back to Lexington, Dr. Mulligan would pass on February 13, 1954 and was buried in Calvary Cemetery, in Lexington.

Dr. William E. Gardner – The Eleventh Superintendent


Dr. William Emmett Gardner was born to Martin Roof and Bellona Brown Gardner on August 24, 1877 in Sonora, Hardin County Kentucky. Receiving his early education in the Sonora public school, he went on to attend Georgetown College and graduate in 1899. After his college graduation, Gardner was accepted to the University of Louisville School of Medicine, graduating in 1902.


He then went on to do his postgraduate work in mental and nervous diseases in hospitals in the cities of New York, Boston, and Chicago. In 1904 he returned to Louisville and was appointed to the position of Second assistant physician at the Central Kentucky Asylum for the Insane at Lakeland. He would serve in this position until 1906 when he assumed the position of First assistant physician under Dr. Malcolm H. Yeaman. When then superintendent Dr. Louis H. Mulligan resigned in 1910, it was Dr. Gardner who was chosen to replace him. Gardners tenure brought a more direct level of patient care, with the Asylum medical staff focusing more on treatment of patients and their illnesses rather than simply housing them.

Central Kentucky Asylum for the Insane (Circa 1910)

He began plans to modernize the medical areas of the institution, pushing for a more hospital environment. In 1913 he also began to serve as a adjunct professor at the University of Louisville’s Medical School. Seeking to further help with the problems of mental illness in a more personal manner, Dr. Gardner resigned on April 6, 1914 and returned to his home in Hardin County for a short time. It would also be later that year he would marry Hettie Belle Fuqua on November 10th. Hettie was the youngest daughter of Joseph Anderson Fuqua, the Steward of the Central Asylum.

In 1915 Dr. Gardiner founded the Louisville Neuropathic Sanitarium, a privately operated mental institution. It was located on Third Street in Louisville until 1916 when it moved to 1412 Sixth St. after Gardiner had purchased Dr. Milton Board’s Sanitarium at that location. In 1915 Dr. Gardner was also appointed to the Jefferson County Board of Health.

Screen Shot 2016-11-16 at 2.42.09 AM.png
Louisville Neuropathic Sanatarium (Circa 1934)

In 1937, he was elected the President of the Kentucky State Medical Association and a year later became the Clinical Professor of the UofL Medical Schools Psychiatric Department. In 1944 due to ill health Gardner closed The Neuropathic Sanitarium and retired from practice yet continued his work as a professor and chairman of the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Louisville until his death on April 8, 1947.  

Dr. Frank L. Peddicord – The Twelfth Superintendent


Frank Leslie Peddicord was born Nov. 22, 1871 in Berlin, Bracken Co. Ky. He was the 3rd of 6 children born to Frank M. Peddicord and Susan Isabell Feagan Peddicord. He studied at Transylvania College before attending the Kentucky Medical School, graduating in 1893.

Dr. F.L. Peddicord

He went on to study at the University of Valparaiso, in Illinois and then the University of Louisville, receiving his M.D. in 1906. He then began his clinical at the Louisville City Hospital that same year.

He served on the Boone County Board of Health from 1910 until 1912 when he accepted the position of First Assistant Physician at Central State Hospital, Lakeland succeeding Dr. T.J. Crice. He served in that role until 1914 when Dr. William E. Gardiner resigned to pursue private practice in Louisville. Dr. Peddicord served as Superintendent of Central State Hospital until his resignation in 1919, though the State Board of Charitable Institutions had reappointed him to another four-year term in 1918. Dr. Walter A. Jillson in turn succeeded him.

In 1937 Dr. Peddicord returned to Central State as a staff doctor and serve as interim Superintendent on numerous occasions. On November 10, 1945, he married Sarah Warrell Wright and later had two children, Frank Leslie Jr. and Susan Wright. He continued to serve as senior physician at Central State until his retirement to Louisville in 1957. On April 9, 1964 Dr. Peddicord died in his home, survived by his wife and two children.

Dr. Peddicord’s signature.

Dr. Walter A. Jillson – The Thirteenth Superintendent


Walter Arthur Jillson was born February 2, 1881 to Milton Nathan and Susan Verona Jillson in Orange, Massachusetts. He graduated in 1905 from the Boston University Medical School and soon opened his own private practice in Gardner Mass. Shortly after he gave up his practice for a position at Flower Hospital in New York City. By 1910 Dr. Jillson has accepted a position Westborough State Hospital in Westborough Mass as a Junior Physician. That next year he would marry Nellie Valera Foster on Nov 20, 1912. By 1916 he had risen to the position of Senior Physician at Westborough, It was in November of 1916 that his wife Nellie passed away leaving Dr. Jillson a widower. The following March 15th he married Kathryn Donnelly. Shortly after his wedding, Dr. Jillson resigned from Westborough on April 10th 1917, and joined the US army medical reserve corps.. While in service he was stationed in Europe, doing most of his medical service in France. In April of 1919 he returned to the US, where he was assigned to Fort Benjamin Harrison near Indianapolis Indiana. The following July Dr. Jillson was discharged from service.

On August 28, 1920, he began his new job as the Superintendent at Central State Hospital, replacing the recently resigned Dr. Frank Peddicord. Almost as soon as he was appointed Superintendent, Jillson raised several hairs among the State Government. His opening sentence of the 1920 annual report stated in his own words “This Hospital is grossly overcrowded and undermanned.” The rest of his tenure at Central State was one filled with reports of patient abuse, some resulting in death and lengthy investigations. In 1921, a former Central State employee, A.W. Taylor filled a petition against Dr. Jillson questioning his sanity. After an inquest was held, Dr. Jillson was cleared of any wrongdoing and mental instability.

Dr. Jillson submitted his resignation at a board meeting in Aril of 1925, which then became effective May 1st. When asked the reason for his resignation, Dr. Jillson said only “I was tired and wanted a rest.” Dr. Jillson and his wife later relocated to San Francisco California where he began work for the Veterans Administration Diagnostic Center. Eventually resuming his own practice in Palo Alto, California in the 1940s. Dr. Jillson pass away on July 8, 1959 at the age of 78 leaving behind a lifetime of service to the mental health community.

Dr. William M. Elliott – The Fourteenth Superintendent


William Mack Elliott was born Dec 29, 1873 to Milton and Juan Philips Elliott in Bryantsville Kentucky. He graduated from Kentucky School of Medicine on August 15, 1896, and later that year married Margaret Snoddy Cochran. Together they would have eight children. After his internship was concluded in 1909, Dr.Elliott returned to Bryantsville to begin his private practice.

In 1925 He accepted the position of Superintendent at the Central State Hospital, replacing Dr. Walter A. Jillson. Shortly thereafter on October 10, 1926, Dr. Elliott was transferred to the Feeble Minded Institute in Frankfort to replace the recently resigned Dr. T. L. Taylor. Dr. Elliott was succeeded Dr. W.W. Durham who had been the Superintendent of the Western State Hospital in Hopkinsville. He would hold this position for several years until retiring and returning to Bryantsville. Dr. Elliott passed away on June 29, 1935.

Dr. W.W. Durham – The Fifteenth Superintendent


Wallis Wyatte Durham was born January 6, 1881 in Christian County, Kentucky. One of eight children to John Henry Durham and Parmelia Caroline Morris. In 1905, the same year he graduated from medical school, Durham married Margaret Orten and they went on to have three children, Henry, Wallace, and Morris who would be stillborn. During the tobacco strike that existed in Kentucky from 1904-1909 Durham was arrested on March 25, 1908 for being one of the vigilante “night riders” and was released on $1,000 Bond. In 1916 Dr. Durham was appointed as Second 2 Assistant Physician at the Western State Hospital in Hopkinsville. He later resigned to serve in World War One and served as an army captain and was stationed at an army camp Arkansas until his discharge. Afterwards he returned to his position at WSH.

In 1921 Dr. Durham succeeded Dr. Fredrick G. Larue as Western States Superintendent. On Oct 1, of 1926 he was transferred to the Superintendent position at the Central State Hospital to replace Dr. W.M. Elliott who had been transferred to the Feeble Minded Institute in Frankfort. During his tenure, Central State experienced much advancement in patient care and modernizing of the hospital. Also, Central States first ward for the criminally insane was constructed and opened. After several weeks of abdominal pain, Dr. Durham died of acute pancreatitis on November 7, 1928 at Saint Joseph’s Infirmary and was buried in Hopkinsville, Ky.

Dr. J. Ernest Fox – The Sixteenth Superintendent


James Ernest Fox was born on Sept. 25, 1877 in Hopkins County, Kentucky to Daniel Fox and his wife Victoria.

Dr. J. Ernest Fox

He attended primary school in Shady Grove and went on to continue his education, at the High School in Princeton Kentucky. Exceedingly intelligent for his age, Fox would begin teaching primary schools at the age of eighteen. For five terms he taught in the Caldwell County schools and one term in Crittenden County. He spent his falls and winters teaching; however during the summer, he attended school himself to further his education.

Upon deciding to become a physician, Fox entered the Hospital College of Medicine in Louisville and graduated on July 1 1904. After graduation, he returned to Levias Kentucky and began a private practice that lasted 6 years. While here Dr. Fox served as a member of the Crittenden Co. Medical Society and on October 23, 1907 wed Miss Gratia Dexter Parsons. In 1910 he relocated to Marion Kentucky and established another practice which for 6 years. He then moved to Smithland Kentucky and began another practice. While living in Smithland Dr. Fox served on the city council, draft board and spent two and a half years as health officer of Livingston County.

In January of 1929 Dr. Fox was appointed Superintendent of Central State, taking over for Dr. C.B. Dunn who had served since the death of Dr. W.W. Durham.

Though his tenure at Central State was short, he received high praise for his management of the institution, especially with the massive amount of overcrowding. Deciding to return to private practice, Dr. Fox tendered his resignation on June 1, 1932. He in turn was succeeded by Dr. William A. Quinn.

High Oaks Sanatarium

After several years he accepted an offer to become the medical director at High Oaks Sanitarium in Lexington in 1938. He would continue in that position for several years until 1941 when he took a position as senior physician at Eastern State Hospital. The following May he was transferred to the State Feeble-Minded Institute in Frankfort as clinical director. From 1945 Dr. Fox served as Superintendent at Western State until his retirement to Paducah, where he passed on April 7, 1949.

Dr. W. A. Quinn – The Seventeenth Superintendent


William Arthur Quinn was born on July 27, 1859 in Henderson County Kentucky, to Joseph Arthur Quinn Jr. and his wife Emarline Royster. Graduating Medical School in 1881, Dr. Quinn returned to Henderson and started a private practice. He married Eunice J. Hatchett, on May 20, 1885. In 1908 he was elected to the Kentucky State Board of Health, he held the position until 1914.

Screen Shot 2017-05-08 at 8.44.36 PM
Dr. Quinn’s Signature

On June 15, 1932 Dr. Quinn traveled to Lakeland where he assumed the position of Superintendent, having been named by Governor Ruby Lafoon, to succeed the recently resigned Dr. J. Edger Fox. It would be a little over a year when in September of 1933, he was replaced as superintendent by Dr. Elijah Maggard, the Superintendent of Eastern State Hospital. Dr. Quinns dismissal was effective December 1st by the Department of Public Welfare. The board considered Quinn handicapped in his position by “a lack of experience in institution management and control.” This was after an in depth investigation into the management conditions at Central State. After his termination, he retired in Henderson.

Dr. Quinn died on Sunday, February 27, 1938 in Henderson of pneumonia and was laid to rest in Fernwood Cemetery, Henderson, Kentucky.

Dr. E. H. Maggard – The Eighteenth Superintendent



Elijah Maggard was born August 14, 1875 in Newfoundland, Elliott County Kentucky. In 1898 he began his studies of medicine at the Barnes Medical College in St. Louis and in 1901 graduated from the University of Louisville Medical School. He went on to do his post-graduate work and also graduate from the Dental College in Louisville in 1905. Between his studies Elijah married Martha Frazier on April 12, 1899. Together they would have one daughter, Opal.

Dr. Maggard continued to do post graduate work until 1910. Between the time of his graduation and 1910, Dr. Maggard began a private practice in Newfoundland. In 1910 he accepted a position as the head surgeon at the State Penitentiary replacing Dr. Joseph L. Barr, though he resigned in 1913 to take charge of the mining practice for the Elkhorn Company in Wayland, Kentucky.

During the First World War he served with the Federal District Board at Lexington for fourteen months. He then began a practice in Ashland before moving to Fleming Kentucky to become head of the hospital there. It was during this time that he was both President of the Floyd County Medical Society and appointed to the state board of tuberculosis commission.

In 1931 he was appointed Health Officer of Bath County Kentucky. The next year in June of 1932 he was appointed to the post of Superintendent at the Eastern State Hospital in Lexington. The next year he was transferred to Central State Hospital, as it’s new Superintendent, replacing Dr. W. A. Quinn. He would continue in that position until 1936 when he would resign and return to Ashland and his private practice. He continued his practice until his retirement. Dr. Maggard passed away on March 19, 1955 and was interred in Rose Hill Burial Park and Mausoleum, Ashland.

Dr. James B. Markey – The Nineteenth Superintendent


James Barnard Markey was born near Birdsville, Livingston County Kentucky on September 10, 1878. He was the second of four children born to Thomas Andrew and Mary Jane Davis Markey. He entered the medical department of the University of Louisville, and after four years, graduated June 30, 1909 with the degree of Doctor of Medicine. He then relocated to Birdsville and began a private practice until at least 1918. In February of 1925 Dr. Markey took a position as First assistant physician at Central State Hospital in Lakeland Ky. under Dr. Jillson’s term as Superintendent.

Eventually he rose in position and by 1934 was serving as the assistant Superintendent at Central State under Dr. William A. Quinn. After the resignation of Dr. Elijah Maggard in 1936, Dr. Markey served as interim superintendent until he was appointed to replace Dr. Busby as Superintendent at Western State Hospital in early 1937. Dr. Markey died in Hopkinsville on November 2, 1951.

Dr. E. L. Busby – The Twentieth Superintendent

(1937 – 1938)

Elbridge L. Busby was born on a farm in Henderson County, September 15, 1878, a son of George F. and Martha Louise (Otey) Busby. The oldest of nine children, Doctor Busby grew up on a farm and lived there until the age of twenty-one, acquired a public school education, and on leaving home began study of medicine in the Kentucky School of Medicine until graduating July 8, 1903. He began a practice and made a name for himself in his profession at Zion, Kentucky.

Doctor Busby married in 1914 to Miss Maude Eades, of Robard, Kentucky. He made his home in Zion until January 1917, when he accepted the post of Second Assistant physician at the Eastern State Hospital for the Insane. He resigned to go into the United States Army September 15, 1918, and as an officer in the Medical Corps was stationed at McPherson, Georgia, and at Greenville, South Carolina, and served until December, 1918. He left the army with the rank of captain, and in March, 1919, began his general practice at Henderson.

On July 1, 1928 he was appointed as Second Assistant physician at Western State Hospital, and by 1935 he was serving as its Superintendent until being removed by Governor Ruby Laffoon that September. When A. B. “Happy” Chandler was elected Governor later that year, he reinstated Dr. Busby as Superintendent. He would serve in that position until 1937 when he was transferred to Central State Hospital as Superintendent, taking the place of Dr. James B. Markey who was succeeding him at Western State. The next year, Dr. Busby was released from his duties at Central State in September. After a short vacation, Dr. Busby returned to Henderson and again began a private practice until his retirement. He passed in 1944 and was layed to rest in Fernwood Cemetery.

Dr. W. R. Summers – The Twenty-First Superintendent


Screen Shot 2016-11-10 at 1.59.22 AM.png

William Rankin Summers was born on August 19, 1872 in Webster County, Missouri William was the eldest of six children born to Jacob Valentine and Gilley Mckeel Summers. He married Karen Kruse June 27, 1897 and together they had five children. Dr. Summers and his family settled in Union Missouri when he assumed a post as a physician at State Hospital Number Three.

In 1918 Dr. Summers purchased Dr. Samuel A. Johnsons Sanitarium in Springfield now renamed The Ozark Sanitarium by the Springfield Hospital Association after Dr. Johnsons murder in 1917. Wanting to serve his country during World War One, Dr. Summers enlisted and left management of the Sanitarium to Dr. J. R. Boyd. Summers served in Medical Corps of the Army until his discharge in 1919. Returning to Springfield, he assumed full control over the Sanitarium. By 1922 Dr. Summers was appointed to the position as assistant physician at Western State and would serve there until he resigned to return to Missouri in 1925.

Dr. Summers returned to Kentucky in 1932 and re-assumed his position as assistant physician at Western State. In 1938 Dr. Summers was serving as assistant superintendent at Western State Hospital until he was assigned to Central State Hospital as acting superintendent due to the dismissal of Dr. E. L. Busby.

1940 2-4.jpg
Central State Hospital (Circa 1940)

It would be shortly thereafter in February of 1939 that Dr. Summers would be appointed as Central States new permanent Superintendent and served in that position until he was transferred back to Western State as its new Superintendent in 1940 replacing Dr. A. M. Lyon who had assumed the Directorship over all state hospitals. Summers was succeeded at Central State by Dr. Isham Kimbell. In 1944 Dr. Summers resigned from Western State and returned to Missouri to serve with the Department of Mental Diseases. . He passed away on November 8, 1949 at his home in Lebanon Missouri.

Dr. Isham Kimbell – The Twenty-Second Superintendent


Isham Kimbell was born on October 27, 1884 to Thomas Isham Kimbell and Martha Jane Boroughs in Jackson, Alabama. He later attended Auburn and from 1904 through 1906 was on faculty as assistant Pharmacy instructor.


He later studied and Premed at the University of Alabama and continued his Medical studies at Vanderbilt. Isham married Annie Hill Walker and had one child; Isham Kimbell Jr. in 1913. In 1917 Dr. Kimbell was commissioned a Captain in the medical corps of the Alabama National Guard and later served on the front lines in France during World War One. After his discharge Dr. Kimbell returned to Pascagoula, Mississippi and began a private practice until he began working with the office of Veterans Affairs.

Screen Shot 2017-05-08 at 8.51.15 PM
Dr. Kimball’s Signature

From 1935 through 1939 Dr. Kimbell served as clinical director of the United States Veterans Hospital in Lexington Kentucky and also served as President of the Kentucky Psychiatric Association. He would soon after resign and accept a post as the Clinical director of the Veterans Hospital in Gulfport, Mississippi. However his stay in Gulfport would be very brief.

Dr. A. M. Lyon – The Twenty-Third Superintendent


Dr. A. M. Lyon

Dr. Addie Montfort Lyon was born February 15, 1888 in Roscoe, Elliott Co. Kentucky, to Hugh Daniel and Martha Jane Lyon. He received his education at the Eastern State Teachers College and also taught school before entering the University of Louisville Medical School where he graduated in 1912. That same year he married Eva E. Vencill on October 12th in Rowan County. They went on to have three children, Addie, Inez, and Wendell.

Also that year Dr. Lyon received an appointment as Medical Director at Sandy Hook. He continued his practice and by 1918 was the Elliott County Health Officer and coroner, though he attempted to resign that year due to the opposition he received to enforcing a smallpox quarantine. His resignation was not accepted and he continued in his duties. From 1923 until 1925 he served as the County Judge of Elliott as well as a bank vice president. It was on April 21, 1926 that Dr. Lyon was appointed to his first state position as Superintendent at the Feeble Minded Institute in Frankfort. He resigned in 1936 and was appointed as the Lawrence County Health Inspector. In February of 1939 he was appointed as the Superintendent at Western State Hospital in Hopkinsville. Dr. Lyon served in that position until he resigned in January of 1941 to become Director of Hospitals and Mental Hygiene for the state of Kentucky.

Screen Shot 2017-06-06 at 1.06.37 AM.png
Dr. Lyon’s Signature

This now put all state mental hospitals under his supervision. One of his first acts in office was to grant complete control of the management for the institutions to the Hospitals superintendents. Later, due to the lack of qualified physicians, Dr. Lyon assumed the position of Acting Superintendent at Central State in 1945 while also serving concurrently as State Director. In 1948, he assumed the role on a permanent basis. The next year he also was appointed as the State Welfare Commissioner. In 1950 this would bring Dr. Lyon under scrutiny for holding three high-ranking jobs at once. When questioned, he stated that he planned to give up “definitely one and maybe two of his jobs.” That next year he would resign as the Director of Hospitals and be replaced by Dr. Frank Gaines.

Dedication of the Lyon Wing (April 26, 1952)

In April of 1952, the new completely reconstructed female wing of the administration was dedicated to Dr. Lyons in a ceremony on the 26th.

Lyon Wing (Circa 1953)

In April of 1953 after a surprise inspection by the state grand jury, Dr. Lyon was brought up on charges of non-feasance of office as Superintendent at Central State due to the deteriorating conditions found at the hospital. Another Grand jury rescinded the charges and exonerated Dr. Lyon the following month. Though Dr. Lyons had been scheduled to resign in July of that year, he left his position a month early in June and was succeeded by Dr. George P. Wyman. In 1956 Dr. Lyon would return to the first position he held within the state as Superintendent of the Kentucky Training Home, once the State Institute for the Feeble Minded. Upon his retirement, Dr. Lyon returned to Ashland, Kentucky. He would later pass from cardiac arrest on February 26, 1971 in Ashland.

Dr. George P. Wyman – The Twenty-Fourth Superintendent


George Parker Wyman was born September 23, 1904, in Brunswick Ohio, the first of 5 children born to Claire Parker Wyman and Ethel Pearl Wyman. He enrolled at the George Washington Medical school in Washington DC and graduated in 1931.

Dr. George P. Wyman

In 1939 while on staff at the Lexington Veterans Administration Hospital Dr. Wyman would meet June Goodwin who he would marry that same year. They would go on to have 4 children together, Elizabeth, Sarah, Judy, and Thomas.

He would also relocate that same year to Mendota, Wisconsin and served on staff at the Veterans Administration section of the Wisconsin State Hospital until 1942. In 1952 assistant superintendent at the Madison state hospital in Madison Indiana. Dr. Wyman returned to Kentucky on June of 1953 to assumed the position of superintendent at Central State Hospital and would hold office until his resignation on May 1, 1956 to take up the superintendency at Milwaukee County asylum in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin.

The Wymans’ eventually retired to Louisville and resided at Treyton Oak Towers. Dr. Wyman passed away on September 6, 1987 and was laid to rest in Cave Hill Cemetery

Dr. Walter Fox – The Twenty-Fifth Superintendent


William Walter Fox was born on June 24, 1924 to William Joseph and Edith (MacDonald) Fox in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

Dr. Walter Fox

After graduating from the Manitoba Medical College in 1947, he interned at Winnipeg General Hospital through the next year, before beginning his residency there as well. He married Margaret Elizabeth Livingston, on December 16, 1949. Together they would go on to have two children, Tannis Lillian and Jennifer Colleen. By 1954 Dr. Fox also served as a consultant to Kentucky Department Mental Health, focusing his research on problems of aged until 1955. In June of that year, Fox was appointed to replace Dr. Anthony Coletti as clinical director at Central State Hospital in Louisville. Upon the resignation of Dr. George P. Wyman, Dr. Fox was appointed to the position of Superintendent at Central State in 1957. It was also in that year he became a U.S. citizen.

Fox had been outspoken on the incomplete conditions of newer buildings that had been built at Central State in the early to mid 1960s. this eventually led to his resignation in March of 1965.

New Central State Hospital Campus (Circa 1963)

After resigning from CSH, Dr. Fox moved to New Orleans, where he served as a professor at Tulane Medical School until 1966. That same year he moved to Mount Pleasant, Iowa, where he was the Superintendent and area director of mental health at the Mental Health Institute from 1966 until 1972.

Dr. Fox’s Signature.

In 1971 he was a member of the technical committee on health at a White House Conference on Aging. After resigning from the health institute he served as the Assistant commissioner for mental health for the Arizona Department of Health in Phoenix, until 1975. He was appointed the Director of the Camelback Hospital Mental Health Center, in Scottsdale, Arizona, serving there until 1978. Afterwards he went into private practice medicine specializing in psychiatry in Phoenix.

Dr. Ray Hogan Hayes – The Twenty-Sixth Superintendent


Ray Hogan Hayes was born on October 14, 1919 to John and Wilma Maude Hogan Hayes, in Hardin County, Kentucky.


He attended Campbellsville Junior College and later Georgetown University. After interning at Providence Hospital in Washington D.C. he came to Louisville and completed his psychiatric residency at the University of Louisville in 1957.

He served as the Mental health Departments district psychiatrist until 1961 and a psychiatric instructor at the University of Louisville until 1962. He also served at a clinical assistant professor of psychiatry at the University of Kentucky medical school, as well as serving as a staff member and eventually clinical director at the U.S. Public Health Service’s neuropsychiatric hospital in Lexington until his resignation in 1965. On August 2, 1965 Dr. Hayes assumed the position of superintendent at Central State Hospital, succeeding Dr. Walter Fox.

Central State Hospital (Circa 1965)

While at Central State, Hayes developed a therapy for treating alcoholism that involved having the patients work at the hospital in various jobs, including as janitors, to help them feel productive. Hayes criticized institutionalized care as an ineffective way to treat criminals. “Large institutions can be the most pernicious … things we can build,” he said at a state conference. “People begin to be buried alive there.”

In 1965 Dr. Hayes resigned at Central State to become clinical associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Louisville and coordinated its psychiatric outpatient services from 1970-72. Also in 1970 he was elected chairman of the Falls Region Council on Alcoholism. While appearing on a Louisville television station WLKY, Dr. Hayes would be introduced to Jean Sawyer who later became his second wife. Mrs. Sawyer was the widow of late County Judge Ebon Powers Sawyer, whom E.P. “Tom” Sawyer park would later be named for. It was Mrs. Sawyer’s daughter, future national news anchor Diane Sawyer who introduced them. The Hayes’s were married in 1974.

From 1975 until his retirement in 1984, Dr. Hayes continued to serve as staff psychiatrist for several Louisville hospitals. He passed on March 25, 1997 of heart failure at Columbia Hospital Audubon in Louisville and was laid to rest at Elkhorn Cemetery in Campbellsville Kentucky. After Dr. Hayes death, his widow Mrs. Jean Sawyer Hayes met with previous E.P. “Tom” Sawyer Park manager Rita Stosberg in the spring of 2003 to discuss her interest in creating a permanent and meaningful memorial honoring her both her late husbands.

Sawyer-Hayes Community Center (2015)

Mrs. Hayes generously offered to match state funds for construction of a community center with the mission to provide a facility where park patrons can gather for special events, meetings and educational opportunities. Ground breaking for the community center took place in April 2008 and the building opened and hosted its first event in May 2009.

Dr. David Irogoyen – The Twenty-Seventh Director


Dr. David Ernest Irigoyen was born November 15, 1927 in Oruno, Bolivia to Aurelio and Ernestina Irigoyen. He studied and received his medical degree at Saint Simons University in Cochabamba, Bolivia in 1953.

Immigrating to the United States, he began working at Central State 1961. While there he served as director of the forensic psychiatric unit and  also as an instructor of psychiatry at the University of Louisville Medical School. In 1967, Dr. Irigoyen was appointed as chief of staff at Central State. In January of 1970 he was appointed to succeed Dr. Ray Hayes as Medical Director. On August 28th of that year Dr. Irigoyen became an American Citizen. On April 15, 1971 he assumed the position of Deputy commissioner for forensic psychiatry for the state of Kentucky. He was was succeeded as director of Central State by Dr. Lawrence Mudd. Dr. Irogoyen  would later pass away on July 29, 2001 in Louisville.

Dr. Lawrence R. Mudd – The Twenty-Eighth Director (1971)

*Bio Under Construction*

Johnny L. Clayton – The Twenty-Ninth and Thirty-Fourth Director

(1972-1974, 1984-1986)

Screen Shot 2017-06-23 at 2.28.46 PM.png

Johnny L. Clayton was born October 24, 1924 in Madisonville Ky. When WWII broke out, Clayton enlisted and later while serving on the U.S.S. Bowers received the Purple Heart. After his service in the Navy ended, Clayton enrolled at Bowling Green Business University and graduated in 1952. Soon after he returned to Madisonville and took a position at the District One Tuberculosis Hospital there until 1960 when he relocated to Louisville for an administrative assistant position at Hazelwood Tuberculosis Hospital. A year later he was appointed as the head administrator, succeeding Harry R. Hinton.

Clayton continued at Hazelwood until 1971, when he left to become the administrator at Central State Hospital. When River Region medical services assumed control of Central in 1974, Clayton stayed on as administrative assistant, first under John Morrison and later Robert Crawford. When River Region returned control of the hospital to the state of Kentucky in 1977, Clayton once again become the administrator. In 1984 he was appointed as Centrals Director, serving until his retirement in 1987. Johnny Clayton passed on February 11, 2007.

New Hospital Directors

  • Dennis Boyd (1981-1984)
  • Johnny L. Clayton (1984-1986)
  • George Nichols III. (1989-1992)
  • Steven Covington (1993-1994)
  • Paula Tamme (1994-1998)
  • Patricia Brodie
  • Donna J. Smith
  • Dr. Vital N. Shah (2010-2016)
  • Greg Taylor (2016)
  • Josie Goodman (2016-2019)
  • Matt Mooring (2019-Current)

River Regional Directors

  • John Morrison (1974-1976)
  • A. Robert Crawford Jr. (1976-1977)

Important note:
If you would like to use any information on this website (including text, bios, photos and any other information) we encourage you to contact us. We do not own all of the materials on this website/blog. Many of these materials are courtesy of other sources and the original copyright holders retain all applicable rights under the law. Please remember that information contained on this site, authored/owned by KHI, is provided under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Photographs, text, illustrations and all other media not authored by KHI belong to their respective authors/owners/copyright holders and are used here for educational purposes only under Title 17 U.S. Code § 107.

Creative Commons License
Creative Commons License