Autobiographical lace made by Adelaide Hall, a patient in a mental asylum in Washington around 1916 - link goes to an extensive article about the artist Outside Art, Insanity Asylum, C 1916, Mental Asylum, De Washington, Autobiograph Lace, Vintage Lacework, Adelaide Hall, Abt 1916
1885 photo by Van der Weyde, a painter who became a photographer and was one of the founding members of the Linked Brotherhood (group of early modernist photographers) of actor Richard Mansfield who appeared in the stage production of "The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde" in both London and New York. His performance was of such ferocity that it is rumored that he was questioned by Scotland Yard in connection with the Jack the Ripper murders in 1888.
Agnes Richter was a German seamstress held as a patient in an insane asylum during the 1890s. During her time there, she densely embroidered her straitjacket with words, undecipherable phrases and drawings which documented her thoughts and feelings throughout her time there.
In the 1880's, Nellie Bly battled against the horrific treatment of mental asylum patients by feigning mental illness and going undercover for 10 days in a mental asylum, so that she could report on the appalling conditions therein. In doing so, she created a social movement for reform.