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House of Correction (Boston, Mass.)


Historical note

In October of 1823, a House of Correction was organized temporarily in the North Jail on Leverett Street for the confinement and labor of lewd, idle and disorderly persons sentenced by the Police Court. By Chapter 28 of the Acts of 1824, the House of Correction in the City of Boston was established as the House of Correction for the County of Suffolk. The House of Correction was located in South Boston until 1896. By Section 15 of Chapter 536 of the Acts of 1896, the House of Correction at South Boston ceased to be a house of correction after all the prisoners sentenced there were transferred to the former House of Industry on Deer Island which was designated the House of Correction at Deer Island or discharged. The last inmates were transferred from the South Boston facility by 1902. The House of Correction was located on Deer Island until 1991 when it was transferred to its current location at South Bay. The House of Correction houses inmates convicted of crimes with sentences of 2 ½ years or less.

Found in 6 Collections and/or Records:

Almshouse records

Identifier: 8501.100
Scope and Contents note The records in this collection consist of three volumes documenting persons admitted to the almshouses on Deer and Rainsford Island from 1853-1914. There are two registers and one index. The registers cover the dates November 1853 through August 1914. The dates of the index are January 1893 through August 1914. The Registers record the name of every person who entered the Almshouse along with a register number, age, place of birth, date admitted, date discharged, whether the person was...
Dates: 1853-1914

Charles Street Jail and Deer Island cases

Identifier: 0700.011

Earl Hamilton collection

Identifier: 9800.031
Scope and Contents Includes scrapbooks, framed memorabilia and plaques compiled and kept by Earl Hamilton who worked at the Suffolk County House of Correction on Deer Island and at South Bay from 1970-1993. Scrapbooks in Box 1 and 2 includes news clippings, photographs, correspondence, etc. Scrapbooks in Box 3 include personal and work correspondence, photographs and other items relating to work at House of Corrections. Also includes a diary writted by Earl Hamilton detailing his experiences. Diary is...
Dates: circa 1901-2002

House of Correction records

Identifier: 8502.001
Scope and Contents note The records for the House of Correction range in date from 1848 through 1970, with the bulk of the dates covering 1878 through 1970. Both the House of Correction at South Boston and the Deer Island House of Correction are represented. The records consist entirely of large volumes including Registers, Indexes, Log Books, various Financial Records, as well as Pardons and Permits. The Registers, in addition to an inmate register, include records of inmate personal property,...
Dates: 1848-1979; Majority of material found within Bulk, 1878-1960

Institutions annual reports

Identifier: 8500.001
Scope and Contents

Includes copies of annual reports of the Board of Directors of Public Institutions, 1857-1886 and 1888; Commissioner of Public Institutions, 1890-1891, 1893-1894, 1897, and 1928; Institutions Registration Department, 1901, 1913-1915; and one bound volume of City Documents relating to the Lunatic Hospital, Inspectors of Prisons, Directors of Public Institutions and Rules and Regulations, 1863-1869. Annual reports can also be found in the City Documents series.

Dates: 1857-1928 with gaps

Additional filters:

Jails 4
Deer Island (Mass.) 3
Public institutions 3
Prisoners 2
Almshouses 1