Australian Heritage Gaols

Oct 2, 2015 0 comments
The links above lead to comprehensive lists of 19th-century prisons, lockups, courthouses and police stations that are scattered around the Australian landscape. This is intended to be a handy resource for tourists and researchers alike.

These buildings were built to last, and last they have. Many have become important heritage centres, and not just the big prisons in major cities. Smaller heritage prisons and court-houses often house local-history museums in regional towns and are an integral part of the Australian heritage industry.

The content here is divided into 3 categories:
  • Heritage Prisons: Buildings that housed prisons 
  • Lockup Cells: Self-standing or attached to courthouses, police stations or 'historical villages'
  • Justice Museums: Police or courthouse museums with no cells 
What is presented here is still the first stage of research on this subject. We continue to collect new information, so please contact us if you can help with updated information or corrections.

'Prisons' or 'Gaols' or 'Jails'?
These terms all refer to the same thing. The old English term for prisons was 'gaol', which in American English became 'jail' (both pronounced the same). The name 'gaol' was used officially in Australia until the late 19th century, when 'prisons' came into use.

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