An establishment maintained at public expense as housing for the homeless.(noun)
American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Use "poorhouse" in a sentence
"He said that the creditors had held a protracted meeting, and there was one irritating old party who kept suggesting that the poorhouse was the inevitable solution; but finally arrangements were made by which our old friend can keep his shop as long as he lives."
"In the building that was known as the poorhouse proper was the main office."
"To conceal the fact that the poorhouse was a miserable place to stay would have been an impossibility."