• Steve Barnett

Work is the Tonic That is Expected to Restore the Shell-Shocked Soldiers to Health at Post Hospital


From The Indianapolis News, Saturday, March 1, 1919: More than one hundred veterans suffering from “shell shock” are undergoing treatment at Ft. Benjamin Harrison hospital. Physicians caring for the men whose nerves were shattered by the thundering of the big guns along the Western Front call this form of nervous disease “psychiatric cases.” Maj. Frank Leslie directs an occupational therapy program treating the men. “No medicine can be used efficaciously in the treatment of men whose nerves collapsed under the strain of battle. Natural surroundings, open air, quiet and work may effect a cure,” he says. Work is the tonic being given to the men and, with the help of government aides and many specially trained Indianapolis women, craft classes such as basketry, wood carving, pottery, and weaving allow the men to work at their bedside or in the workshop.

“…Shell-Shocked Soldiers to Health at Post Hospital,” The Indianapolis News, 1 March 1919, p. 2:1

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