Westborough State Hospital, formerly known as the Westborough Insane Hospital, was built in the 1800s on hope and compassion. But with little scientific knowledge of mental illness, institutions like Westborough eventually became wretched warehouses. Civil rights activists, disability rights lawyers and politicians made it their mission to end the harsh restrictions imposed on people with mental illness, and the remedy was to close institutions like Westborough, which was shuttered in 2010. As part of the Spotlight team report on mental illness, Boston Globe photographer Suzanne Kreiter toured the abandoned hospital. “I know that technically these photographs have no people in them,” Kreiter says, “but they’re all right there. All these images contain the ghosts of the people who need our help the most.” [ 18 photos total ]

Mark Burns spent five years visiting all 59 of the United States' national parks. Captured in stirring black and white images, his landscape photography project was completed just in time for the National Park Service's centennial celebration. “It's a time to reflect on the rich history of our national parks,” Burns said of his 160,000-mile journey, “but it's also a time to plan wisely for the next 100 years.” Glacier Bay's wild coastline, Death Valley's parched terrain, and Yellowstone's surging geysers are all pictured in searing detail. One image from each park is currently being exhibited at the Houston Museum of Natural Science until September 5th. A selection can be found below. [ 20 photos total ]

Lenin underwater, a penguin weigh-in, monsoon flooding in India, an earthquake in central Italy, a deep blue lake in El Salvador, American partiers blown into Canada on the St. Clair River, towed back across the border by the Canadian Coast Guard, and much more. [ 31 photos total ]

Hundreds of photographers have gathered in Rio to follow the action in the Olympic arenas, swimming pools, racetracks, and more. Over the two weeks of the games, I’ll be featuring some amazing images from recent Olympic events. Today’s entry encompasses gymnastics, BMX racing, water polo, diving, beach volleyball, taekwondo, decathlon, marathon swimming, kayaking, women’s wrestling, and much more. [ 40 photos total ]

President Obama visits the flood-ravaged state of Louisiana today after this historic disaster killed at least 17 and destroyed about 60,000 homes. [ 38 photos total ]

Four Paws, an international animal welfare group, has just completed the removal of the surviving 15 animals from the Khan Younis Zoo—dubbed the “worst zoo in the world”—in the Gaza Strip.  Years of war, few visitors, and an Israeli blockade made it increasingly difficult to keep the zoo open and the remaining animals healthy—their numbers dwindling from 44 to 15. The zoo’s owner asked for outside help, and an evacuation was organized. A tiger, several monkeys, emus, a porcupine, and other creatures were given veterinary attention and shipped to facilities in Jordan, South Africa, and elsewhere. Khan Younis Zoo, once reduced to displaying the mummified carcasses of animals that had died in their care, has now shut down. [ 19 photos total ]

Central Italy was struck by a powerful, shallow, 6.2-magnitude earthquake at 3:36 am local time, devastating several mountain villages, and resulting in at least 73 deaths so far. Buildings in towns close to the epicenter collapsed on top of each other, falling into the streets, trapping hundreds in enormous piles of rubble. The death toll is still expected to rise as rescue teams reach some of the more remote villages in the region. [ 21 photos total ]

As the sun sets for the night on Palace Playland in Old Orchard Beach, Maine, owner Joel Golder says, “Once this amusement park is gone . . . it’s gone. We’re the only beachfront amusement park left in New England.” He says he loves his family’s business. “I’ve been doing this all my life. The smells, the sounds, there’s nothing like it.” It’s said that the boardwalk atmosphere and these nostalgic slices of Americana are disappearing. But if one looks closely, remnants of the past can still be found on the shores of New England. As Fran Amero drives his 1927 Model T four-door Roadster up Ocean Boulevard, he says the car makes him feel connected to New Hampshire’s Hampton Beach. “It’s like I’ve been here before at a different time. I feel like I’m back in the day.” There are still places that allow us to feel safe and share our own childhood with our children. As Alicia Mullings cradles a pile of tickets for her son Marc, 10, at the Dream Machine arcade at Nantasket Beach in Hull, Mass., she says, “I’ve been coming here since I was a kid; it’s fun to see him having fun doing the same things I did as a kid. We don’t go to the arcade all the time, it’s special.” Golder encourages people to take advantage of this history, “We’re not going to be here forever. . . . This is a place filled with good memories of happier times. . . . We like to deliver happiness.” [ 22 photos total ]

Hundreds of photographers gathered in Rio to follow the action in the Olympic arenas, swimming pools, racetracks, and more. The final events wrapped up over the weekend, capped off by the Closing Cermony in Maracana Stadium on Sunday, and the handoff to Tokyo for the 2020 Olympic Games. Today’s entry encompasses rhythmic gymnastics, wrestling, triathlon, mountain biking, canoe, modern pentathlon, soccer, the Closing Ceremony, and much more. [ 40 photos total ]

A sunset over Egypt, a moonrise over Syria, a nude statue of Donald Trump, floods in Louisiana, fires in California, Olympics in Rio, a new airship makes its maiden flight, and much more. [ 35 photos total ]

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