Snake Thompson first met Clara Thompson at St. Elizabeths Hospital in 1918. Clara took a summer job there between semesters at Johns Hopkins. Snake was then stationed at St. Elizabeths. It was rumored that the two were romantically involved, but this was denied by Clara.
Clara did her psychiatric residency at Phipps Clinic under Adolf Meyer. During her last year, she began psychoanalysis with Snake Thompson, an arrangement that led to her dismissal from the clinic.
(Emphasis mine.)Adolf Meyer to Dr. Warfield T. Long-cope (Johns Hopkins Hospital), May 19, 1926 (AMP, Series I.) wrote: Dr. Clara Thompson resigned from the Clinic last October or November, and I allowed the resignation to pass because at the time I did not actually know that, in addition to matters which would have made continuation of service impossible, she had since June treated one of several patients of the Clinic for a fee of $100 a month at the offices of a clever but unsavory psychoanalyst, a Navy recruiting officer who was a U.S. spy in the Orient during the War. If any other facts were needed to settle the question of further connections with the Johns Hopkins Hospital, I should let you have them. She is bright, but unduly free of some traits we would like to consider obligatory. (Grob, p. 276-7) —Grob, G. N. (1985). The inner world of American psychiatry, 1890-1940 : selected correspondence. New Brunswick, N.J., Rutgers University Press.
The following passage from Clara Thompson's papers undoubtedly refers to her own analysis by Snake Thompson.
Clara Thompson and Frieda-Fromm Reichmann were both staff at Chestnut Lodge, a private mental hospital to which St. Elizabeths apparently referred some of their schizophrenic patients. Another site about Chestnut Lodge...Interpersonal psychoanalysis : the selected papers of Clara M. Thompson, Thompson, Clara, Green, Maurice R. (Ed.) wrote:Notes on the Psychoanalytic Significance of the Choice of Analyst
The second case is that of a woman with a male analyst. The first meeting was at a social gathering. In the course of the evening they had a conversation together which led to his suggesting that she come to see him professionally and discuss her being analyzed. Her reaction was fear but she realized that she needed analysis, that he would probably accept her for a fee which she could pay, and finally she felt irresistibly attracted to the situation. Analysis was begun, fear continued, sleeplessness developed, difficulty in working appeared, and the patient finally lost her job. The analyst repeatedly urged the patient to seek the sources of her fear of him in her fear of her father-to no avail. The difficulty lay in the analyst. There was in him some tendency to get women away from other men and make them entirely dependent on him. The patient in question had a neurotic attachment to her employer which was reciprocated by the employer, who also had a neurotic need for power. When this situation began to be analyzed, the analyst's jealousy reinforced the patient's own tendency to make indirect aggressions of a serious nature against her employer with disastrous consequences. Although the patient continued in analysis for some months after the loss of her position, she made no further progress, having lost confidence in the analyst on a reality basis. Later her analysis was successfully completed by another. p. 1351
Hubbard spoke about Chestnut Lodge in a Philadelphia Doctorate Course lecture, although he called it Walnut Lodge.
Hubbard recommended one of Dr. Clara Thompson's books, Psychoanalysis: Evolution and Development, in Operational Bulletin 17 No. 2 14 Feb 1956 Processing Results. (Technical Bulletins Volume III p. 323 (c) 1991 L. Ron Hubbard Library)Lecture 04 December 1952: The Logics Methods of Thinking by L. Ron Hubbard wrote:This is the most gorgeous, by the way, piece of classification that has ever been done. And it hasn’t any use. Its level of use is demonstrated by the fact that there’s a place by the name of Walnut Lodge. I… I… They don’t see anything humorous in that, by the way; it’s Walnut Lodge. And that’s a spinbin down the line here. And uh… Walnut Lodge has… has… treats only… only uh… psychiat… oh uh… pardon me I… I said that accidentally, not as a gag, uh… uh… not as a gag.
They… they… they sent three people to see, to… to see me and every one of them was under treatment. And this was their staff. But anyway, very good people there, I’m sure, didn’t happen to meet any. Have some fine patients though. Anyway, they… they treat only schizophrenia. And so they take only schizophrenics. Now how do they get only schizophrenics?
Well, anybody sent to Walnut Lodge is a classified schizophrenic. And they take somebody who is a dementia praecox unclassified or a more modern definition, a mania-depressive and they take him from Saint Elizabeth’s and they take him over to Walnut Lodge and he goes onto the books as a schizophrenic. Why? Because Walnut Lodge takes only schizophrenics.
Now you can look at them and you say, "Now wait a minute, let’s go over this awfully slow," you say, "What’s a schizophrenic?"
"A schizophrenic? We take schizophrenics here."
You say, "No, no, no, what is a schizophrenic?"
"You know what a schizophrenic is," they say, "a schizophrenic is a general type of insanity and so when we take schizophrenics here that ends the whole thing."
Actually, the modern definition of schizophrenia… actually the American psychiatrist does not define schizophrenia from its root word of shizoid or schizoid, meaning scissors-like, and it means a split personality. And you think that a schizophrenic today is a split personality person? That’s not true. It hasn’t anything to do with… it’s… I don’t know, I don’t know what it is. I go around and I get these guys and I hold them against the wall and I say, "Now look, what… what is this?"
And they say, "Well, uh… we had to go to school for twelve…" "Well, wai… wai… wait a minute now. All I want is a common English definition or a Latin definition or even put it in Sanskrit. I can find a translator, but I want you to tell me what so and so is or why." And you get the most… it’s… it’s just A=A=A=A explanations.
Well, he rowed a horse because he rode a horse and that’s on down the line – no sense. You get that way by treating psychotics. Don’t ever treat psychotics.