Coverage of some recent violent attacks on female patients in mental health facilities in Milwaukee County in the U.S., prompted a medical journalist to contact me with an interesting set of questions – ones for which I had no ready answers. Perhaps, some readers and subscribers of H-Madness have some thoughts on the subject. When did mixed-gender wards and units begin to emerge in psychiatric facilities? How widespread have these historically been? Were they the results of institutional pressures in the wake of de-institutionalization? Were they a function of changing ideas about reintegrating institutional patients in society following World War II? Or do they have a longer history?