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Mary LaskerMary Lasker
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L. Dix over a hundred years before, or about a hundred years before, was vetoed by President Pierce. It had suggested that large amounts of government land be sold for the benefit of the mentally ill in the country and what would have happened and what might have been accomplished for the mentally ill had her bill passed over a hundred years before and not been vetoed is just not to be overlooked. It's sad to imagine what this might have done to change the picture. But she actually had gotten the bill passed.

Well, our bill wasn't vetoed because President Truman was friendly and the budget at that time hadn't gotten on to our views about large money.

The date of Dorothea L. Dix's bill was 1845, and this was 1946.

Now, the National Mental Health Institute developed. I urged the appointment of Dr. Franz Alexander, who was a well-known psychoanalyst, and Will Menninger, and they were both appointed to the early Council, the first Council. I think Helen Ross was also appointed to it; she was from Chicago. These analysts were very surprised by this development of funds, Federal funds, being made available and were almost annoyed by it, but they were not oriented to medical research at all, and a great deal of work was done in supporting psychological testing and efforts for training. In the beginning there was very, very little orientation toward any physical or medical aspects of mental illness.

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