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Manuscript Group 197
ALLEGHENY COUNTY WORKHOUSE RECORDS
1866-1971
28 cu. ft.


In response to a petition from the Board of Prison Inspectors of Allegheny county concerned with the rising costs of maintaining prisoners at the county jail and the increasingly crowded conditions there, in 1866 the state legislature authorized the construction of a workhouse in Allegheny County. The Allegheny County Workhouse and Inebriate Asylum at Claremont (Blawnox) admitted its first inmates in 1869, two years before the buildings and wall were completed. The workhouse was officially closed in 1971.

The records of the Allegheny County Workhouse consist of minute books of the Board of Managers, 1866-1971, 11 volumes; oaths of officials, 1888-1912, 1 volume; visitors' records, 1871-1880, 1 volume; account books, 1866-1940, 9 volumes; and various population records (admission and discharge books, 1870-1877, 3 volumes; conduct books, 1870-1906, 1915-1919, 8 volumes; discharge and descriptive dockets, 1873-1971, 24 volumes; daily sick call books, 1896-1940, 18 volumes; escaped prisoners records, 1882-1971, 3 volumes; hospital record books, 1913-1939, 6 volumes; prison registers, 1869-1951, 17 volumes; punishment books, 1870-1873, 1880-1892, 1904-1959, 7 volumes; and hard labor registers, 1869-1971, 24 volumes. Included are 11 annual reports (printed) partially covering the period 1873-1899, and a typed manuscript entitled "Feeding of Inmates of Allegheny County Workhouse," by E. W. Tillotson, Jr., and W. A. Hamor.


Board of Managers

Population Records

Printed Books and Manuscripts

PA State Archives Hours, Directions, & Fees Research Topics Finding Aids for Collections Land Records