The Monson Developmental Center is a historic site at 200 State Avenue in Monson, Massachusetts. The property, whose core has been in state control since 1854, has housed a variety of facilities for providing services to the indigent or sick since then.
In 1854 the Commonwealth of Massachusetts acquired 175 acres of land in Monson, on which it erected an almshouse to provide facilities for poor immigrants fleeing the Irish Potato Famine. In 1855 it was renamed the State Farm School, and later the State Primary School, and it housed children who were wards of the state. It served in this role until 1887. In 1898 the state's Hospital for Epileptics opened on the grounds, using the old facilities and building several more buildings. Over the first half of the 20th century the facility was expanded, growing to 72 buildings on 662 acres of land.
The property was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1994. Since then, its population has continued to decline, and the state in 2008 announced plans to close the facility. In 2012 the state relocated the last 31 residents, and began to consider the future of the property.
Monson Developmental Center last updated: December 2018