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|Record Creator:||Corrections, Department of|
This database contains the prison register of more than 500 inmates housed in the Seatco Prison, near what is now the town of Bucoda. The privately-run prison operated from 1877 until 1888 when the new Territorial Penitentiary opened in Walla Walla. The register shows name, alias, residence, place convicted, crime, sentence, physical condition, and date of discharge, parole or escape.
The Prison at Seatco was established by Pierce County Sheriff Jeremiah K. Smith, Thurston County Sheriff William Billings, and Territorial Governor Elisha P. Ferry, with private funds provided by businessman Oliver Shead. Prisoners were contracted out as laborers for seventy cents per day. The poor conditions at Seatco may have encouraged the government to build the Territorial Penitentiary in Walla Walla.
Although Seatco Prison was privately operated, the records from that facility were passed along to the appropriate government body. The responsibility for operating prisons has passed through various departments, starting in 1897 with the Board of Audit and Control. Since 1981, all adult correctional institutions have been run by the Department of Corrections.
|Related Records:||For more information, or to learn about related records, contact the Washington State Archives at (360) 586-1492, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.|
|Access Restriction Notes:||These records are open for research.|
|Source of Transfer||State Government Archives
|Agency History:||The Washington State Department of Corrections was created in 1981 to establish a comprehensive system of corrections for convicted law violators within the state of Washington. The Department of Corrections manages all state–operated adult prisons and supervises adult offenders who live in the community.|
|Preferred Citation:||[Identification of item], Corrections Department, Penitentiary, Convict Record, 1877-1888, Washington State Archives, Digital Archives, http://digitalarchives.wa.gov, [date accessed].|