Yuma Territorial Prison
Yuma, Arizona
November 26, 2016

Beth and I visited the Yuma Territorial Prison. It was built in the 1870s and functioned as a prison until 1909. It was later used as a temporary home to Yuma High School and shelter for homeless families until being refurbished and made into a historical attraction.

The prison isn't that big, covering about an acre. The walls are made of mortar and stone, about 5 feet thick. In the days before air conditioning, and that this is an ungodly hot place in summer, the thick walls offered a tiny bit of relief to the heat.

There is a museum with lots of photos from the era. You can walk the grounds, enter into cells, enter the dreaded "Dark Cell", which was the early equivalent to the "Ad Seg" of today's clinks. I backsassed a free man and had to spend a few minutes in the Dark Cell.

This is a popular place. We were amused by the modern fence built to keep people out of the prison! If you're in Yuma with an hour to kill, this is a good place to visit.

Photos (Click to enlarge)


Peering into one room

 


Cell blocks

 


The dreaded Dark Cell

 


Me emerging from the Dark Cell

 


Incorrigible

 


Guard Tower

 

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(c) 2016 Scott Surgent. For entertainment purposes only. Them clothes got laundry numbers on them. You remember your number and always wear the ones that has your number. Any man forgets his number spends a night in the box. These here spoons you keep with you. Any man loses his spoon spends a night in the box. There's no playing grab-ass or fighting in the building. You got a grudge against another man, you fight him Saturday afternoon. Any man playing grab-ass or fighting in the building spends a night in the box. First bell's at five minutes of eight when you will get in your bunk. Last bell is at eight. Any man not in his bunk at eight spends the night in the box. There is no smoking in the prone position in bed. To smoke you must have both legs over the side of your bunk. Any man caught smoking in the prone position in bed... spends a night in the box. You get two sheets. Every Saturday, you put the clean sheet on the top... the top sheet on the bottom... and the bottom sheet you turn in to the laundry boy. Any man turns in the wrong sheet spends a night in the box. No one'll sit in the bunks with dirty pants on. Any man with dirty pants on sitting on the bunks spends a night in the box. Any man don't bring back his empty pop bottle spends a night in the box. Any man loud talking spends a night in the box. You got questions, you come to me. I'm Carr, the floor walker. I'm responsible for order in here. Any man don't keep order spends a night in...