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Montgomery County Rotary Jail

Location: Old Jail Museum, 225 N. Washington Street/US 231 & Spring Street, Crawfordsville. (Montgomery County, Indiana)

Installed: 2000 Indiana Historical Bureau and Montgomery County Cultural Foundation, Inc.

ID# : 54.2000.1


Side one:

This jail and sheriff's residence built 1882. First rotary jail built in U.S. Constructed to plans based on patented design of William H. Brown and Benjamin F. Haugh of Indianapolis. In use until 1973. Opened as museum and restoration begun 1975. Listed in National Register of Historic Places 1975.

Side two:

Circular cell block has sixteen wedge-shaped cells on a two-story turntable around a central shaft. Design promised better prisoner security and jailer safety. Cell block immobilized 1930s as hazard to prisoners. County jails first established 1792 under laws of Northwest Territory; continued under laws of Indiana Territory and state constitutions of 1816 and 1851.


Government Institutions, Buildings and Architecture