Partlow State School

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Partlow State School
Established 1919
Opened 1923
Closed 2011
Current Status Closed
Building Style Cottage Plan
Location Tuscaloosa, AL
Peak Patient Population 2,245 in 1966
Alternate Names
  • Alabama Home for Mental Defectives
  • Partlow Developmental Center


Partlow opened in September 1923 as the Alabama Home for mental Defectives & housed 116 people between the ages of 6-18. Originally all patients were housed in 1 building that quickly became overcrowded. The following year a second dormitory was built, but by 1930 the facility had over 400 patients and had changed it's name in 1927 to Partlow State School. Due to economic problems with the depression, the hospital saw understaffed wards & little maintenance or repairs.

It wasn't until 1946 that a separate building was built for "Black feeble minded" children, who previously had nowhere to go. By 1961 8 new cottages were constructed & education became a priority. In December, 2011 the facility was closed and future of the site has not been decided. The site has been renovated and now houses the University of Alabama Human Resources Department. The southern portion of the former campus was redeveloped into a new location for the Bryce Hospital.