Carbon County Jail

The Carbon County Jail is a historic jail located in Jim Thorpe, Carbon County, Pennsylvania.

Carbon County Jail
Carbon County Prison Sides 2724px.jpg
Carbon County Jail, December 2007
Carbon County Jail is located in Pennsylvania
Carbon County Jail
Carbon County Jail is located in the United States
Carbon County Jail
Location128 Broadway Street, Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania
Coordinates40°51′50″N 75°44′49″W / 40.86389°N 75.74694°W / 40.86389; -75.74694Coordinates: 40°51′50″N 75°44′49″W / 40.86389°N 75.74694°W / 40.86389; -75.74694
Area4.9 acres (2.0 ha)
Built1869–1870
Built byHenry Bowman
ArchitectEdward Haviland
NRHP reference No.74001764[1]
Added to NRHPNovember 8, 1974

HistoryEdit

The jail was built in 1869–1870 by Harry Bowman (under architect Edward Haviland) and is a two-story, fortress-like rusticated stone building. It has thick, massive walls and a square, one-story guard turret above the main entrance. It features arched windows on the main facade and on the turret. There is a basement which was used for solitary confinement until 1980. The building is most notable as the jail where a number of suspected "Molly Maguires" were imprisoned while awaiting trial in 1875–1876 and subsequently hanged.[2]

It was added to the National Register of Historic Places on November 8, 1974.[1] It is located in the Old Mauch Chunk Historic District.

On January 23, 1995, following the completion and opening of the new $8.2 million Carbon County Correctional Facility in Nesquehoning, the prisoners were transferred out of the jail to the new facility.[3]

MuseumEdit

 
A typical jail cell of the time as seen in the Old Jail Museum

When the county put the jail up for sale in the fall of 1994, local residents Thomas McBride and wife Betty Lou purchased the building for $160,000 with the goal of preserving the local history.[4] The building is now operated as the Old Jail Museum with seasonal tours. In cell 17, there is a handprint left by Alexander Campbell, a "Molly Maguire" who was hanged in 1877, to proclaim his innocence. Legend has it that despite many attempts to remove it, including building a new wall, the mark still remains today.[5]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. March 13, 2009.
  2. ^ "National Historic Landmarks & National Register of Historic Places in Pennsylvania". CRGIS: Cultural Resources Geographic Information System. Archived from the original (Searchable database) on 14 September 2005. Note: This includes Sally McMurry (August 1974). 01H.pdf "National Register of Historic Places Inventory Nomination Form: Carbon County Jail" Check |url= value (help) (PDF). Retrieved 2012-10-30.
  3. ^ Call, WALT ROLAND, The Morning. "OLD JAIL MAY HOUSE MOLLY LORE JIM THORPE BUSINESSMAN PURCHASES FORMER CARBON PRISON". mcall.com. Retrieved 2021-08-25.
  4. ^ Call, WALT ROLAND, The Morning. "OLD JAIL MAY HOUSE MOLLY LORE JIM THORPE BUSINESSMAN PURCHASES FORMER CARBON PRISON". mcall.com. Retrieved 2021-08-25.
  5. ^ O'Donnell, Matt (2007-06-01). "The Ghostly Handprint". An Action News Special Report. ABC News. Archived from the original on 2012-08-12. Retrieved 2007-06-26.

External linksEdit