Laurelton State Village

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Laurelton State Village
Established 1913
Opened 1917
Closed 1998
Current Status Closed
Building Style Cottage Plan
Architect(s) George S. Idell
Location Hartley Township, PA
Architecture Style Georgian Revival
Alternate Names
  • Laurelton Center
  • Laurelton State Village For Women
  • Laurelton State Village Farms


Laurelton State Village started its life as the Laurelton Village for feeble-minded women of childbearing age. Being the first of its kind, the initial concept was intended to detain, segregate, care for, and train feeble-minded women of childbearing age (between the ages of 16 and 45 years). Construction began in 1914 on 230 acres of land, with the first cottage opening in 1917 with 36 residents. Within the next ten years six more buildings were constructed, with the population increasing to 500. The institution was self-sufficient, with residents working on the farm harvesting food, doing laundry and working in the kitchen.

By 1939, all buildings on the grounds had been completed, and included a theater, recreation building, administration offices, two cottages, a power house and several buildings for hospital purposes. Within the administration building, they had a garage, psychological laboratory, a post office and various service and storage rooms; these were all located in the basement floor. There were also board and staff rooms on the first floor, among a number of offices. The second and third floors were used as living quarters for the staff and officials.

In 1969, a radical change took place when the decision was made to admit males into the institution. With the addition of male residents the institution was renamed to the Laurelton State School and Hospital. The Center closed in 1998. The property was purchased by Mountain Valley Inc in 2006, who have expressed interest in turning it into a resort among other things.

Images of Laurelton State Village[edit]

Development Plans[edit]

Plans for the former institution, which once housed mentally-challenged residents, include a conference center and a championship-length, Arnold Palmer Design golf course.

The Hickernell Springs Resort will feature 125 rooms, most of which will be in the former hospital building, with the remaining rooms in surrounding cottages. Also included is a registration area; ballrooms (located in two of the larger buildings on campus); an indoor pool and health spa; an outdoor pool; and at least two restaurants. About five of the cottages may be earmarked for condominiums and sold to corporations for use by employees.

The Palmer course will wrap around the complex, which spans 335 acres and involves 52 buildings. The Laurelton Center was closed in 1998 following a 77-year period as a state-run institution. Besides $7 million budgeted for the golf course, another $24 million is needed to renovate the buildings. About $5 million of that amount will be used to remove asbestos hazards. Two other hazardous disposal sites on the property must also be cleaned up. [1]

Links & Additional Information[edit]


information about Laurelton State Village and its history is in this link as well as information about the local area around this facility