6. Kings Park Psychiatric Hospital, Kings Park, New York
Kings Park Psychiatric Hospital on Long Island opened its doors in 1885 as a solution to the overcrowding in New York State’s surrounding mental institutions. The 800-acre institution was a self-sustaining facility with farms and railroad spurs to bring in supplies like coal. A majority of the patients were assigned to farming duties to encourage their exposure to fresh air and because it was believed to be a therapeutic exercise.
As the facility kept expanding, eventually reaching a size large enough to provide its own heat and electricity, the population increased as well, causing overcrowding throughout the 1950s before the patient population steadily decreased. The hospital closed its doors permanently in 1996, but like Letchworth Village, a portion of the grounds remain available to the public to explore as a county park while the buildings are strictly off-limits.