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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Misericorde Hospital


I have been researching and writing about the dark side of psychiatry particularly in relation to secret Cold War LSD experiments on children in Montreal at McGill and elsewhere across Canada.

I have a photo of Doctors Ewen Cameron and and Heinz Lehmann standing with a group of other doctors outside the Misericorde hospital in Montreal in 1959. This was a hospital for. unwed mothers and also an orphanage. At the time Lehmann was directing the research institute of the Allan Memorial. What are two Mc Gill psychiatrists doing in a group photo on the steps of this hospital? What legitimate reason would they have to be there?

I am guessing the secret reason is they are setting up an agreement to get children for use in experiments. We know there were orphans living in a sealed off wing of the Allan in those years.

Cameron and Lehmann were key figures in what appears to have been a eugenics program operating out of McGill. Lehmann had trained in Nazi Germany at precisely the universities where the infamous T4 eugenics program was developed. He came to Quebec in 1937 and was soon placed in charge of a major psychiatric hospital known as a place where patients were zombified with drugs and ECT.

There was also a link with New York and Massachusetts hospitals and military bases like Plattsburgh AF base known to have used trafficked orphans from Quebec in classified experiments. Some of this information comes from surviving orphans.

Cameron worked with Dr Nolan D C Lewis from the NY Psychiatric Institute where a Nazi doctor Franz Kalman had run a eugenics program since the 1930s. Lewis worked with Cameron giving LSD to children in the 1950s at McGill.

They needed a lot of children in those days and Quebec was a baby factory, with the highest birth rate in the western world.

Comments?

33 comments:

c.castilloux said...

Interesting.
I was born at the Misericorde hostpital in 1963, and spent the first six months of my life there before being adopted.
Much later, in the 80's, i worked at the MNI, and found out then about the infamous Allen Memorial reasearch.
I hope against hope there was no connection.I'll bet the english medical world, then as now, was a small one. Just about everyone knew everyone else.
On the other hand, many of the orphans at the Misericorde were deemed to be mentally 'deficient'.
Interesting.

LunaMoth1 said...

Dear C.
That is extremely interesting... that you were born at Misericorde and later worked at the MNI. And from googling your name, I see you now live in Toronto and like Leonard Cohen. (I hope against hope there is no connection, although there might be.)


You were lucky to have been adopted. I have met others who were born in Misericorde, and one or two who were labelled mentally deficient, but in talking to them it seems more likely they were guinea pigs in some great experiment which has been quite successfully covered up. And yes, they all knew one another, and maybe this is one reason the cover-up succeeded.

Thank you for leaving this comment, and sorry I only found it today.

mbcampion said...

Hello -
I was born at Misericorde Hospital in December, 1961. I have been searching for my birth mother for a while now, only to find out she died in 1997. When I started researching where I was born, I was appalled and shocked by the practices of the Misericorde back then... I was one of the lucky ones, not being deemed mentally deficient and eventually adopted into the U.S. in 1963.

Fearless Cooking said...

My mother had a daughter at Misericorde in December 1963. I am still looking for her.

Fearless Cooking said...
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johnny said...

MY MOTHER was born there in 1954... her last name is Marcoux. Any link to it...

Dean said...

Hi
I was born here in 1968 and am just now searching my birth parents. This is the first Ive heard of this and would be interested to learn more. Thank you for puting this out for all to see.
Dean

mysavior said...

I was born at Misericorde Hospital in 1957 and adopted to Lieselotte Burkhardt and Roger Joseph Zotique Chartrand. I was told my birth name was Laura.
I am in search of my birth parents and siblings.
I have been told that many adotees information were changed/modified.
Is there anyone who can help me get adoption records. My parents say there are none.
charlotte.heidi@yahoo.com

Kyle said...

My mother (born in 1931)was adopted out of the orphanage at Mc Gill University by a pediatric med student named Chester Mead in 1933. I am trying to find out more about it. I have heard from relatives that it was a place where medical experiments/shots were tried out on the orphans. Does anyone know more about this?
Thank You,
Eve

mbcampion said...

Comment for Kyle (Eve) -
Hi - try looking up Dupleiss orphans and that should give you some more information about what experiments were conducted at Misericorde.....

Andre said...

I was born in Misericorde Dieu Aug 21, 1952 to the name of Gisele Beaulieu. I am looking for my mother and any sibling. My mom was born in approximately 1931.

Ann Diamond said...

I just found these recent comments. Unfortunately, I can't help locate birth parents. You could try contacting the Duplessis orphans' committee in Montreal -- I will try to find their address but i think you can search for them on the internet. They have an archive.

Rod Vienneau has written a book about the Duplessis orphans -- his wife, Clarina Duguay, is one of them. However, it's in French, as is a lot of the information and archival material.

I hope to post more about this soon--

Ann Diamond said...

I highly recommend Rod Vienneau's book on the Duplessis Orphans, available for download at:
http://www.scribd.com/doc/40153255/COLLUSION-THE-DARK-HISTORY-OF-THE-DUPLESSIS-ORPHANS-A-CANADIAN-GENOCIDE-CRIMES-COMMITTED-AT-THE-HANDS-OF-THE-CATHOLIC-CHURCH-AND-STATE

mysavior said...

mysavior
I have some updated information from my first post on March 9, 2011
I have received information on my birth mother after almost 1 year from an agency in Montreal. My DOB is 10-25-57, my birth name was Marie, Laura, Rolande. I was born and adopted at Misericorde. She was 20, brown hair and eyes, was a hatter prior to pregnancy. Father had blond hair brown eyes, did not know of pregancy or birth and he was a laborer. I assume my last name was Rolande. I have requested a reunion and hope she is still alive. I have not been given names of either.

SP Saunders said...

I have been researching my family history and found that my great Aunt died at this hospital in 1975 at the age of 84.

Was this a convalescence hosptial by then?

Joseph Alley said...

I was born at the Misericorde Hostpital in 1957. I was born on March 4, 1957. I was baptised on March 6. I was baptised Joseph along with so many others. My baptismal paper list me as, mother as unknown, father unknown.

Pierre said...

Hello , My name is Pierre Joseph Hervieux . I was born on May 21 , 1968 . My unwed mother had me there at the nunnery / orphanage . My mother is French Canadian and my father is Black so she gave me up for adoption at birth . I stayed at the orphanage until I was 4 at which point my aunt convinced my natural mother to take me home . I have memories of the place . I could not yet speak though I remember sitting in a cafeteria type room at a long table with other children to eat . No one spoke the nuns stood over and tended to portioning out our food .It was a cold unloving type of vibe . I also remember a playground in the courtyard that was fenced in but on the main road . I longed to be on the other side of the fence . It used to be that I could get my birth certificate directly at the nun's office . I am thankful not to have suffered abuse and that they where there otherwise I would have been aborted like my younger brother .

Maria McDonald said...
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Maria McDonald said...
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Maria McDonald said...
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Maria McDonald said...
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Maria McDonald said...
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Maria McDonald said...

I was born at the misericourd in 1952. Never got adopted,still I'm Montreal,I'm on welfare,that's why I'm having problems searching for answers

Maria McDonald said...

I was born at the misericourd in 1952. Never got adopted,still I'm Montreal,I'm on welfare,that's why I'm having problems searching for answers

Maria McDonald said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Maria McDonald said...

I was born at the misericourd in 1952. Never got adopted,still I'm Montreal,I'm on welfare,that's why I'm having problems searching for answers

Maria McDonald said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Patricia Santacroce said...

i was born at this hospital in 1964.Spent 6-9 months while my birth parents visited on weekends. Finally they were told bring me home or i was to be put up for adoption.One day they went to visit and i was gone.Was put into foster care in Gaspe until 1966 when my U.S. citizen parents adopted me.I searched for and found my birth parents back in 1991. I have been searching for who my foster parents might be but can't get any information.

Ann Diamond said...

Thank you all for your comments on this page. They tell a story of their own about the suffering caused to at least two generations of birth parents and children. I hope that all of you can find answers, and wherever possible, your lost loved ones.

I don't really know what has become of Misericorde Hospital since the days when it was filled with abandoned babies and caretaking nuns. I'll try to look into it again when I get to Montreal in a month's time.

Another site to investigate is the notorious Creche d'Youville on Cote de Liesse, where torture allegedly took place. One survivor, Rick Piva, who now lives in Hawaii, has written a memoir describing what he went through there as a very small child.

Below, on this blog, you can also read an interview with Duplessis Orphan Silvio Day, who I believe grew up at Mont Providence, another orphanage on Gouin Boulevard in Cartierville, before he was placed at Hopital St Jean de Dieu, where real horrors took place during this very dark period in Quebec history.



Ann Diamond said...

Rick Piva's memoir at Amazon.com
http://www.amazon.com/Americas-First-Family-Adoptions-Portant/dp/1497419948

Map of Creche d'Youville (and a strange story in the Comments)
http://wikimapia.org/6333857/Former-Youville-Orphanage-Ancienne-Cr%C3%A8che-D-Youville

Patricia Santacroce said...

I think Misericorde Hospital has been turned into a home for the aged.

France Frechette said...

Hello,
Was born in st-Lambert private hospital, with 24 hrs to live. Then apparently transferred to Misericorde. Was told stayed for 4 months but only stayed 13 days as per hospital records Only dad had access to baby not mother who claims my hospital stay costed $4,000.00 in notary fees...1
Need the truth.
Thanks

tsanta64 said...

What year were you born.I think approx. pre 1960.there were many tortures/ experiments inflicted on the supposed "infirm" children born at the hospital.I can't get any other info other than that.I am still trying to get info on who my foster parents were at the time but have always hit a dead end.My feeling is i was not placed into a foster family type situation as we might know of today but rather another institution .