Welcome to the Colorado Mental Health Institute at Pueblo Museum
Colorado Mental Health Institute at Pueblo Museum is located in the former Superintendent's Residence at 13th and Francisco Streets in Pueblo, Colorado. Our mission is to collect, preserve, interpret and exhibit artifacts and archives from the Mental Health Institute (formerly Colorado State Hospital). The Museum was developed to insure that the history of CMHIP is not forgotten and that future generations will gain a better understanding of the treatment of the mentally ill in Colorado.
Upon the realization that nothing was being done to save the many valuable artifacts and records at CMHIP, Bob and Nell Mitchell secured the former Superintendent's Residence as a depository for these items. The 1934 house had recently been renovated by order of then superintendent, Dr. Haydee Kort, the first and so far the only woman superintendent of the Institute. The conference room in the Museum is named in her honor and contains a small exhibit outlining her accomplishments. The Mitchells then obtained National Register of Historic Places status for the residence in September of 1985, and worked nights and weekends setting up the Museum. In 1998 Bob and Nell retired, Nell from CMHIP after 36 years of service, and Bob from Rocky Mountain Steel (formerly CF&I Steel) after 39 years, and six years at Hutchison Western, a farm and ranch supply company in Denver. Both continue as museum director and assistant director on a volunteer basis. Several years later, they were joined by John Kogovsek, a retired high school history teacher, and Frances Mathews, a former nurse, as volunteer museum assistants. Eunice Wolther, CMHIP Volunteer Services Director, coordinates the museum activities with the Mental Health Institute.
John's interest in gardening has resulted in a beautiful arrangement of flowers in the patio area behind the Museum which he faithfully cares for from Spring through Fall. Frances sorts and organizes boxes of papers and institutes new procedures for their retrieval. Eunice's insightful advice and knowledge of the present day activities at CMHIP keeps us informed and on track. Donna Ward, now retired, still serves as a consultant.
Among our collections are the Institute's original biennial reports beginning in 1879 and historical documents and photographs regarding the Institute's many operations; i.e., the former dairy farm, the evolution of the various psychiatric divisions and administrative departments, the legendary underground tunnels, the 1962 geographic decentralization process, and many more. On exhibit are old restraint devices, medical equipment, scrapbooks, awards, hand-written ledgers, and the original 1920s master time clock from the first administration building. Also on display on the patio is the cornerstone from the first asylum building.
CMHIP Museum is open on Tuesdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. for tours and research purposes or by appointment by calling the Museum at 719 543-2012. Access the Museum from I-25, north or south, by exiting on 13th Street and continuing west to the entrance of the Institute's South Campus. The Museum is located at the first right turn inside the grounds. Our mailing address is 1600 West 24th Street, Pueblo, CO, 81003. Admission is free.
CMHIP Museum is a non-profit organization.
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Please note that due to confidentiality laws, patient information cannot be obtained from this web site. However, you may call CMHIP at 719 546-4000 and ask for the Medical Records Department. They will assist you in this process.
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