photo sharing and upload picture albums photo forums search pictures popular photos photography help login
trip | profile | all galleries >> Galleries >> Visiting the Pen * Eastern State Penitentiary * tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

Visiting the Pen * Eastern State Penitentiary *

Located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania - this penitentiary is now referred to as a "stabilized ruin". When completed in 1829, it was considered state of the art with its wheel/spoke design copied throughout the world. The penitentiary was modified over time with the last prisoners leaving in 1971.

Its first prisoner arrived on 23 October 1829. "...Charles Williams, Prisoner Number One. Burglar. Light Black Skin. Five feet seven inches tall. Foot: eleven inches. Scar on nose. Scar on Thigh. Broad Mouth. Black eyes. Farmer by trade. Can read. Theft included one twenty-dollar watch, one three-dollar gold seal, one, a gold key. Sentenced to two years confinement with labor..."

The design was meant to induce penitence and reflection. Each prisoner had a cell with its own outside yard, walls 20 feet high or so and very thick, so there was no communication between prisoners. Food was delivered and a rough toilet was located in the corner of each cell. It was connected to rudimentary sewers and this meant the prisoner never had to go outside his cell. If prisoners did go out, a hood was put over their heads, so they couldn't see other prisoners or the guards.

From its beginning it was a tourist attraction of sorts. The Marquis de La Fayette visited the unfinished penitentiary in 1826 with Alexis de Tocqueville and Charles Dickens visiting at later times.

For an interesting Timeline, go to:
For Notable Inmates*, go to:

*Toward the end of my photo gallery, you can see the interior furniture of Al Capone's Cell - not typical of other prisoners.
IMG_0809.JPG IMG_0810.JPG IMG_0807.JPG IMG_0808.JPG
IMG_0811.JPG IMG_0812.JPG IMG_0813.JPG IMG_0814.JPG
IMG_0815.JPG IMG_0816.JPG IMG_0817.JPG IMG_0818.JPG
IMG_0819.JPG IMG_0820.JPG IMG_0821.JPG IMG_0822.JPG
IMG_0823.JPG IMG_0824.JPG IMG_0825.JPG IMG_0826.JPG
IMG_0827.JPG IMG_0828.JPG IMG_0829.JPG IMG_0830.JPG
IMG_0831.JPG IMG_0832.JPG IMG_0833.JPG IMG_0834.JPG
IMG_0835.JPG IMG_0836.JPG IMG_0837.JPG IMG_0838.JPG
IMG_0839.JPG IMG_0840.JPG IMG_0841.JPG IMG_0842.JPG
IMG_0842.2.JPG IMG_0845.JPG IMG_0846.JPG IMG_0847.JPG
IMG_0848.JPG IMG_0849.JPG IMG_0850.JPG IMG_0851.JPG
IMG_0852.JPG IMG_0853.JPG IMG_0854.JPG IMG_0855.JPG
IMG_0856.JPG IMG_0858.JPG IMG_0859.JPG IMG_0860.JPG
IMG_0861.JPG IMG_0862.JPG IMG_0863.JPG IMG_0864.JPG
IMG_0865.JPG IMG_0866.JPG IMG_0867.JPG IMG_0868.JPG
IMG_0869.JPG IMG_0870.JPG IMG_0871.JPG IMG_0872.JPG
IMG_0873.JPG IMG_0874.JPG IMG_0875.JPG IMG_0876.JPG
IMG_0877.JPG IMG_0878.JPG IMG_0879.JPG IMG_0881.JPG
IMG_0882.JPG IMG_0883.JPG IMG_0884.JPG IMG_0885.JPG
IMG_0886.JPG IMG_0887.JPG IMG_0888.JPG IMG_0889.JPG