Tuesday, 12 June 2012

William James Ball and the Glamorgan Asylum, 1921

On 22 October 1921, William James Ball was admitted to the Glamorgan Asylum at Angleton for a fifth and final time. His re-admission noted "Recent Mania" as the primary diagnosis. His daughter, Mabel (Charlotte) Ball, of 140 Plassey Street, Penarth, was listed as his closest relative. Mary, his wife, had passed away in 1919. His intake states that William was "talkative, restless, sleepless , violent at times, roams about night & day & is quite unable to care for himself." His most recent episode began a week prior to his admission. He had been reported as "alright" up until then. He was frail physically and doctors noted his laboured breathing.

The notes for 23 October 1921 mention that William's thinking continued to be deluded. He told his doctors "that he makes lots of money in his room, but won't divulge the secret." William is described as mischievous, "goes through a lot of antics". Staff note that he was fairly well, although suffering from bronchitis. His condition remains much the same through the notes dated up to 3 December 1921. His kidney functioning was noted as being abnormal and had been for some time.

On 4 January 1922, the doctor noted that William was steadily deteriorating, restless and fairly weak. William's suffering came to an end on 10 January 1922. The entry for that morning reads "He died this morning at 11-55". The following day, a post-morten examination was held. The last notation in the file reads "Died".

With his passing, William's anguish and unhappy life ended. It is difficult to believe that he was admitted a total of five times over twenty years and spent much time in care.

Regards, K.

1 comment:

Christine said...

What a sad story. I feel so much for William. His life could have been so different if he had been born at a different time. Thanks for caring enough to share William's story, Karen.