Research for a Thief on King Street: The Charleston Gaol
The more I read about the Old City Jail in Charleston, SC, the more I realize the place was evil. In my opinion, it should be torn down and its foundations salted
In operation from 1802 to 1939, its speculated that over 10,000 people died within its confines. The conditions were abysmal and punishments severe. Those imprisoned there were made examples – not reformed. It was Colonial Justice – not Criminal Justice.
There was a huge debate (not to mention a Civil War) between those who fought for States Rights over Federal Rights. What I didn’t realize was that this debate extended to the Bill of Rights. Something I thought everyone (in their right mind) would support. The right to keep and bear arms, unreasonable search and seizure, right to a grand jury, and impartial jury, were of oftimes overlooked. In fact, I suspect some states even had laws that contradicted the language of the Bill of Rights.
With roots that stemmed as far back as medieval times, the Old City Jail and the former Workhouse (aka the Sugar House) were built to be brutal, deplorable places where your humanity was stripped. If there was any place that had reason to be haunted it would be those halls.
Six Miles to Charleston: The True Story of John and Lavinia Fisher (Murder & Mayhem)