John over at Fort Wayne Left posted a picture of an old map he has of our fair city. He made specific mention to the residential facilty for mentally handicapped youth over on State Street. On the map it is referred to as "Indiana School for Feeble Minded Youths". We called it the old State School. This jogged my memory significantly. . .
You see, my grandparents lived directly across a very lightly traveled road from the State School. My grandmother babysat for children for as long as I can remember. She was always home during the day while my grandfather worked since she was very epileptic. I have heard her tell numerous stories about coming into the living room and finding one of those "feeble minded youth" sitting on their screened-in porch on the glider or sitting in the recliner in the front room watching television.
I can even remember my grandparents had the phone number to the State School taped to the inside of the cabinet next to the phone on a yellow piece of lined paper. (There was also a pig shaped cutting board that hung on he wall next to that phone. Who didn't have one of those back then?) They would simply call the school and someone would come and retireve the patient and walk them back to the facility. That is, after my grandmother would feed them some of her famous banana bread. I'll bet that's why they always found their way back to her porch. It never rattled my grandmother. She would say, "Well, at least they're coming somewhere safe."
1 hour ago