About Memoir Madness: Research Note

*The Portico, where new admissions were admitted.

Writer’s Research Note:

Fortunately, I am a pack rat and have saved 90+ letters, written from late December 1968 to May 1969, between Jeff A. Brown and me; therefore, I was able to recreate my youthful voice by referring to them, often using direct quotes.

In addition, these letters helped me to remember specific incidents, for without the letters, much of that time would have been a blur.

Remember this old saying?

“If you can recall the 1960’s, you weren’t there.”

Okay, a joke.

I also obtained copies of my court and hospital records, both of which revealed surprising insights into the commitment process, in the days before the powerful 1972 and 1975 Supreme Court rulings on involuntary commitment. In addition, the records also offered some surprises regarding my grandparents’ actions.

I wrote the first draft of this memoir in 2004 - 2005, while I was living abroad (in Skopje, North Macedonia); thus, the internet was very helpful in clarifying the current events of 1968-1969, though I have since cut from the final version most of those references.


About Memoir Madness: Return to Table of Contents


*Photo of Cherokee Mental Health Institute, by Jennifer Semple Siegel


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