What was it, and where? • Alcatraz was first a military base equipped with full weaponry to protect California during the gold rush. • In San Francisco bay • Reserved for military use under President Millard Fillmore in 1850 • Soon, Alcatraz was being turned into a prison during the early 1860’s for civilians that were being arrested for treason during the civil war. • With many men being imprisoned, living quarters were being built to house all of the prisoners. • It was built to house 500 men, but only hovered around 200-300. • The prison was designed to last 100 years. • The island was discovered in 1775 • It housed Americas most difficult and dangerous felons during its years of operation 1934-1963
WHY WAS IT BUILT? • It was first built as a military base to protect San Francisco Bay during the gold rush. • It was then used to house many of Americas most hazardous and challenging felons. • Such as, notorious gangster, Al “Scarface” Capone (1899-1947), and murderer Robert “ Birdman of Alcatraz” Stroud (1890-1963)
Why is it significant • This prison was very important and useful because it housed many dangerous, violent murderers and kept them away from the rest of the world, keeping us safe. • It kept inmates in and didn’t let them out until they were allowed to. • It was impossible to escape from and isolated the inmates from humanity.
WHO WAS IT MEANT FOR? • Alcatraz was meant for dangerous serial killers, gangsters, and people who completed very illegal tasks. • Alcatraz was the best for these types of people because it would isolate them from humanity.
WHO WERE SOME OF THE INMATES? • Al Capone Gangster, bootlegger, racketeer, criminal, murder, boss of Chicago outfit 11 years on Alcatraz • George “Machine Gun” Kelly Kidnapping, bank robbery, murder 17 years on Alcatraz • Alvin Karpis Theft, robbery, murder and kidnapping 26 years in Alcatraz • Arthur “Doc” Barker Theft, robbery, murder, and kidnapping 1936-1939 killed by prison guard after escape attempt in Alcatraz • Robert “bird man of Alcatraz” Stroud Manslaughter, assault, and murder 17 years in Alcatraz
Did anyone ever try to escape and how ? • In its 29 years of operation there were 14 escape attempts, all were failed. • December, 16,1937, Theodore Cole, and Ralph Roe, had filed through iron bars in the prison's mat shop in the industries building. The two jumped into the water and were never seen again, but the severe weather conditions at the time have led to them drowning in the bay and their bodies were swept out to sea by the strong current. • Most of the escape attempts were jumping into the water and attempting to swim to shore. • Most people who tried to swim were shot and killed, died of hypothermia, surrendered, or drowned.
WHEN DID THEY SHUT IT DOWN AND WHY? • Very expensive to run, difficult location, and it was very hard to keep control of activities inside of it. • It is now a tourist attraction that runs year round, and is usually ranging on price tickets from $70-$100.
RUMORS AND FACTS • There are tons of Fantasized, daring escape events • First nations used to leave their own people who had committed crimes on the island to die, people believe their ghosts still roam the island today • Alcatraz (2012) TV show based on Alcatraz prison • Alcatraz island, (1935) movie • Escape from Alcatraz, (1979) movie • Birdman of Alcatraz, (1962) movie • Murder in the First, (1995) movie