Pennsylvania citizens who were residents of Pennhurst, a state institution opened in 1908 for the “feeble-minded” of society, had unique life experiences. These experiences might seem ordinary but are extraordinary until one considers the setting in which they occurred or when one grasps the profound meaning of what happened there. Interviews with survivors of life in this institution, along with close examination of available archival records about others who lived at Pennhurst, yielded stories and memories that unveiled surprising realities about people with disabilities, both yesterday and today.

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