Hi-ho Hi-ho it's to Alaska I go! travel blog

The entrance to Alcatraz

The Guards Accomodations

Graffiti from the Indian takeover

Supplies for the cellmates, the first thing th einmates saw inside

The Showers, the next stop

 

The recreation area

How the cells may have looked - if you had privilages

The hall, cells to each side

 


I was awoken with a startle to my alarm wrenching out of a lovely dream. My first reaction was to get annoyed, then reality clicked in and I rememered that I was on holiday!! So in light of this realisation I BOUNCED out of bed ready for my tour of Alcatraz. And, again it is a beautiful sunny day, YAY! Alcatraz was originally a fort , the civil War-era buildings dotting the island give insight into the 19th century when the island served as both a harbor defense fort and a military prison. Then as a depression hit and crime rose the residents demanded more secure jailhouses. As Alcatraz was too costly to maintain as a miltary base, it was renamed and turned into the most high security and technologically advanced prison of it's time. It bacame home to some of America's most notorious criminals, it operated from 1934 to 1963 and was said to have brought a dark mystique to 'The Rock'. The presence of infamous inmates like Al "Scarface" Capone, and the "Birdman" Robert Stroud helped to establish the island's notoriety. To this day, Alcatraz is best known as one of the world's most legendary prisons.

Many people, though, are unaware of the wealth of other stories to be learned on the island. One I found interesting was the visible reminders of the American Indian Occupation that started in 1969 after the prison closed, highlighting an important milestone in the American Indian rights movement.

I joined a walking tour and met a trooper that worked the prision in the late 50's. There was also a really well documented audio tour with sacarily real sound effects of prisioners life inside. The story is truely an engaging one, more so in actually being there.

I've been lucky to stumble across the library for free internet and wifi - had a skype call with Dad, updated this journal, and with that being the end of my admin thus far, am off to collect my things from the hotel and get a ride to the airport.

Next stop - Alsaka!



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