Way back in 1872, the Old Idaho Penitentiary opened it's doors to some of the West's most desperate criminals. Today, YOU can be the inmates (only for a couple of hours kids, don't worry!) as the doors have been opened for visitors to experience 100 years of unique prison history!
As you make your way around the prison, you can learn all about the people who one called it home, and what that meant for their days. You can visit the Solitary Confinement, as well as the cell blocks, and even the Gallows where men met their untimely ends.
Idaho Territory was less than ten years old when the Old Idaho Penitentiary was built east of Boise in 1870. The penitentiary grew from a single cellhouse into a complex of several distinctive buildings surrounded by a high sandstone wall. Convicts themselves quarried the stone from the nearby ridges and completed all the later construction.
Throughout the prison, you can see thirty historic buildings, as well as special exhibitions. Across the year you can also take part in a number of events and programs designed just for families, where you can relive the Old Penitentiary's past of daring escapes, executions and scandals.
A fascinating insight into Idaho's past, where history comes back to life as you explore this historic and very important Boise attraction!
Don't worry kids, your time in the prison will only be a few hours, we promise!