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Confederate Prison

William Street & Broadway Street
Alton, IL 62002
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P: (800) 258-6645
P: (800) 258-6645
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3.5 of 5 bubbles
40 Reviews
Confederate Prison

In just three years, more than 11,700 Confederate prisoners passed through the gates of the Alton Prison and were held captive with its walls. The Alton Prison, opened in 1833 and closed in 1860, was the first Illinois State Penitentiary. In December of 1861, after inspecting the facilities, Major General Henry Halleck, Commander of the Department of the Missouri, prepared to have the prison re-opened as a the Alton Federal Military Prison.

Click here to listen to a story about the old Confederate Prison.

On Feb. 9, 1862, the first prisoners arrived at the prison. Inmates of the prison included Confederate soldiers, citizens imprisoned for treason acts, and bushwackers or guerillas imprisoned for acts against the government. Much of the time, the prison was overcrowded, prisoners were malnourished and had inadequate clothing.  

Under these dilapidated conditions, prisoners were exposed to influenza, dysentery and small pox. The small pox epidemic grew in numbers, and the official military death toll listed 1,354 deceased. A monument dedicated to those who perished can be found at their burial site in the Confederate Cemetery.

After the war, the prison was privately purchased and building blocks were removed.  The remaining small portion of the wall was restored in 1973 and may be visited today.


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Traveler Reviews brought to you by
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Alton Prison
214 William St, Alton, IL 62002-6146
3.5 of 5 bubbles
40 Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
Excellent
7
Very Good
11
Average
18
Poor
3
Terrible
1
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Recent Reviews
DuneBug2
Illinois
Trip type:
Family
Neat Little Stop
Aug 4, 2018
Not too much here but still a neat little stop to view the ruins that are left. Several detailed informative boards give some history of the Prison and its' role... more »
Dawn B
Trip type:
Couples
Very informative.
Aug 4, 2018
Little difficult to find if you don't know where your going, as there isn't much of it left. One small wall that isn't even in it's original location. It was... more »
mkitchens
Oxford, Mississippi
Trip type:
Couples
Only a portion of wall left standing
Jun 20, 2018
There are a couple of kiosks with information, too, but that's about it. From the reviews I read, it is what I expected to see, but I still had to... more »
Irene M
Houston, Texas
Trip type:
Solo travel
Small Rock Wall Left
Mar 19, 2018
There is a small wall of the prison thats left. Some how they forgot to preserve history. On the side of the wall there is billboard types of information interesting.... more »
etherius
Bismarck, Missouri
A little bit of history... little bit only
Jan 22, 2018
Easily missed, this tiny portion of Alton history is all that is left of the Alton prison. Stones from the original prison have been used in buildings all over town.... more »
1-5 of 40 Reviews

These reviews are the subjective opinions of individual travelers and not of TripAdvisor LLC nor of its partners.

© 2018 TripAdvisor LLC
Confederate Prison

In just three years, more than 11,700 Confederate prisoners passed through the gates of the Alton Prison and were held captive with its walls. The Alton Prison, opened in 1833 and closed in 1860, was the first Illinois State Penitentiary. In December of 1861, after inspecting the facilities, Major General Henry Halleck, Commander of the Department of the Missouri, prepared to have the prison re-opened as a the Alton Federal Military Prison.

Click here to listen to a story about the old Confederate Prison.

On Feb. 9, 1862, the first prisoners arrived at the prison. Inmates of the prison included Confederate soldiers, citizens imprisoned for treason acts, and bushwackers or guerillas imprisoned for acts against the government. Much of the time, the prison was overcrowded, prisoners were malnourished and had inadequate clothing.  

Under these dilapidated conditions, prisoners were exposed to influenza, dysentery and small pox. The small pox epidemic grew in numbers, and the official military death toll listed 1,354 deceased. A monument dedicated to those who perished can be found at their burial site in the Confederate Cemetery.

After the war, the prison was privately purchased and building blocks were removed.  The remaining small portion of the wall was restored in 1973 and may be visited today.


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