The Old Charleston District Jail

“… the nastiest, dirtiest, filthiest, lousiest place I ever was in …” (prisoner, 1864)

The Charleston District Jail opened for business in 1802 and continued operation until 1937. It has survived countless calamities, both natural and man-made and still stands on Magazine Street in Charleston, SC. The sentiment above was expressed by Lt. A.O. Abbott of the Union army whose misfortunes included being captured and held for a time in the jail’s walled yard.

I shot most of these images in January 2008 for my book, “Abode of Misery — An Illustrated Compilation of Facts, Secrets and Myths of the Old Charleston District Jail.”  (Clicking on the the title in the preceding sentence will take you to Amazon.com where it can be purchased.)