Monroe County, New York. Penitentiary Papers

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Monroe County Penitentiary papers
Creator: Monroe County Penitentiary (Rochester, N.Y.)
Call Number: D.48
Dates: 1854-1971
Physical Description: 12 boxes, 108 Volumes
Language(s): Materials are in English
Repository: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester

Table of Contents:

Scope and Content
Subject(s)
Access
Use
Citation
Related Materials
Content List
Box 1
Box 2
Box 3
Box 4
Box 5
Box 6
Box 7
Box 8
Box 9
Box 10
Box 11
Box 12
Volume Contents
Collection Overview
Title: Monroe County Penitentiary papers
Creator: Monroe County Penitentiary (Rochester, N.Y.)
Call Number: D.48
Dates: 1854-1971
Physical Description: 12 boxes, 108 Volumes
Language(s): Materials are in English
Repository: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester

Scope and Content
The papers and records of the Monroe County Penitentiary on South Avenue in Rochester, N. Y., are arranged in five categories: correspondence, financial, legal, attendance reports, and miscellaneous.

Boxes 1 - 3 contain correspondence (1855- 1964) primarily to and from the superintendent of the penitentiary. The letters are filed in chronological order. The superintendents, with terms of office, include:

In 1971, when the penitentiary was demolished, Mr. Riley was appointed superintendent of the Monroe County Jail, 130 Plymouth Avenue South in downtown Rochester. The printed annual reports and other relevant information of the superintendents are included in: Monroe county, N. Y. Board of Supervisors. Proceedings., which can be located through the card catalog.

For the period 1854-1915, The subjects covered in the letters vary widely. Most refer to financial matters, such as transfer of funds, requests for payment or goods, old formal check vouchers, and deliveries. These cover the day to day operation and management of the several shops, the farm, and other facilities within the penitentiary. Other subjects covered in this correspondence include notification of bail, the delivery and discharge of prisoners, and similar matters. There are also requests for information about individual prisoners by state and county officials for the purpose of pardons and clemency.

From 1915 on, monthly financial reports in letter form to the County Treasurer make up the bulk of the correspondence. Until 1935, letters regarding the areas above can also be found interspersed with the monthly reports. After 1933, very few letters are present, while the monthly financial reports continue until 1964.

Boxes 4 - 7 (financial 1854 - 1963) are arranged in approximate chronological order. The material includes inventories, balance sheets and ledgers, receipts, bills and statements, checks and vouchers, and other miscellaneous arterial. In the late 1870's, several reports of the payments by and charges to other agencies who had prisoners at the Monroe County penitentiary also appear. They include the federal government and surrounding counties. From about 1880 until 1920, the material is mostly bills and receipts. There are only a few pieces between 1920 and 1938. From 1939 to 1952, only monthly balance sheets between the penitentiary and the Rochester State Hospital appear. They reflect the sale of fare and shop products to the hospital and garbage collection there. In 1953, ledger sheets of prisoners wages paid begins; the monthly hospital reports end in 1959. From then until 1963, only the prisoner wage listing can be found.

Box 8 contains legal material from 1854 until 1949. The material is arranged in approximate chronological order by decades. From 1854 until 1919, the material includes insurance policies, contracts and agreements, discharges of prisoners, requests for information from the governor, and a few court transcripts and some state legislation. After 1920, most of the material deals with inspections and tests of the penitentiary's farm, particularly the herds for tuberculosis. After 1940, the only item is the contract and blueprint for a new front driveway for the penitentiary grounds.

Box 9 contains several years of very detailed statistics of attendance at the penitentiary. The reports cover 1909-1914 and include the summary of the daily flux of prisoners, the number received, discharged, and a running total. Also, there are lists of names of the persons that were discharged each day, along with notes of their personal belongings that were returned as they left. There a several months in 1912 that are missing, but most are present and filed in chronological order.

Box 10 contains folders of miscellaneous material. The first folder is a detailed inventory conducted in 1933 of the entire penitentiary. The second folder contains receipt books from 1956 to 1962. The third folder contains various types of printed material, including a federal statement regarding health facilities in jails, newspaper clippings, and advertisements of vendors. The fourth folder captains twenty 8x10 inch photos of the penitentiary taken in 1971 just before it was demolished.

Box 11 contains folders of annual reports of several penal institutions around the country, an outline for layout and equipment of prisons and penitentiaries, and the annual reports from the Monroe County Penitentiary from 1937 until 1959.

Box 12 contains miscellaneous financial and legal material. A record of services performed by the superintendent in 1963 is in the first folder. The last four folders contain miscellaneous contracts between the penitentiary and other counties and law enforcement agencies, and are arranged in chronological order from 1923 until 1938.

The 107 Bound Volumes in the collection cover various matters relating to the running of the penitentiary, including financial ledgers, inmate records, labor accounts, statistical reports, inventories, and report scrapbooks. Dates vary according to category.

Also included with the papers are four record storage boxes of Sheriff's Records that were added to the collection on June 11, 1990. These are shelved with the collection, but have not been indexed.

Subject(s):
New York (State)--Monroe County
Prisons
Prisoners
Law enforcement
Correspondence
Financial records
Monroe County Penitentiary (Rochester, N.Y.)
Access
The Monroe County Penitentiary papers is open for research use. Researchers are advised to contact Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation prior to visiting. Upon arrival, researchers will also be asked to fill out a registration form and provide photo identification.Use
Reproductions are made upon request but can be subject to restrictions. Permission to publish materials from the collection must currently be requested. Please note that some materials may be copyrighted or restricted. It is the researcher's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections. For more information contact rarebks@library.rochester.eduCitation
[Item title, item date], Monroe County Penitentiary papers, D.48, Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of RochesterRelated Materials
Monroe County Penitentiary Papers, Addition .


Administrative Information
Author: Finding aid prepared by Rare Books and Special Collections staff
Publisher: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester
Address:
Rush Rhees Library
Second Floor, Room 225
Rochester, NY 14627-0055
rarebks@library.rochester.edu
URL:


Content List
Box 1
Correspondence
Folder
1. 1855 - 1857
2. 1858 - 1859
3. January - June, 1860
4. July - December, 1860
5. January - June, 1861
6. July - December, 1861
7. 1862
8. January - July, 1863
9. August - September, 1863
10. October - December, 1863
11. 1864 - 1869
12. January - February, 1870
13. March, 1870
14. April, 1870
15. May - June, 1870
16. July - August, 1870
17. September - December, 1870
18. 1871 - 1872
19. 1873 - 1875
20. 1876 - 1879
21. 1880 - 1889
22. 1890
23. 1891
24. 1892
25. 1893 - 1899
Box 2
Correspondence
Folder
1. 1900 - 1915
2. 1916
3. 1917
4. 1918
5. January - June, 1919
6. July - December, 1919
7. January - June, 1920
8. July - December, 1920
9. 1921
10. 1922
11. 1923
12. 1924
13. 1925
14. 1926
15. 1927
16. January - July, 1928
17. August - December, 1928
18. January - March, 1929
19. April - June, 1929
20. July - December, 1929
21. 1930
22. 1931
23. 1932
24. 1933
25. 1934
26. 1935
Box 3
Correspondence
Folder
1. 1936
2. 1937
3. 1938
4. 1939
5. 1940
6. 1941
7. 1942
8. 1943
9. 1944
10. 1945
11. 1946
12. 1947
13. 1948
14. 1949
15. 1950
16. 1951
17. 1952
18. 1953
19. 1954
20. 1955
21. 1956
22. 1957
23. 1958
24. 1959
25. 1960
26. 1961
27. 1962
28. 1963 - 1964
29. No Date
Box 4
Financial
Folder
1. 1854 - 1856
2. 1857 #1
3. 1857 #2
4. 1858
5. 1859
6. 1860
7. 1861
8. 1862
9. 1863 - 1867
10. 1868
11. 1869
12. 1870 #1
13. 1870 #2
14. 1870 #3
15. 1871 #1
16. 1871 #2
Box 5
Financial
Folder
1. 1872
2. 1873
3. 1874
4. 1875
5. 1876
6. 1877
7. 1878
8. 1879
9. 1880
10. 1881
11. 1882
12. 1883 - 1884
13. 1885
14. 1886
15. 1887
16. 1888 #1
17. 1888 #2
18. 1888 #3
19. 1888 #4
20. 1888 #5
Box 6
Financial
Folder
1. 1889
2. 1890 - 1892
3. 1893 - 1896
4. 1897 - 1899
5. 1900 - 1901
6. 1902 #1
7. 1902 #2
8. 1902 #3
9. 1903 - 1905
10. 1906 #1
11. 1906 #2
12. 1907
13. 1908
14. 1909
15. 1910 - 1912
16. 1913
Box 7
Financial
Folder
1. 1914 #1
2. 1914 #2
3. 1914 #3
4. 1915 - 1916
5. 1917 - 1919
6. 1920 - 1938
7. 1939
8. 1940
9. 1941
10. 1942
11. 1943
12. 1944
13. 1945
14. 1946
15. 1947
16. 1948
17. 1949
18. 1950
19. 1951
20. 1952
21. 1953
22. 1954
23. 1955
24. 1956
25. 1957
26. 1958
27. 1959
28. 1960
29. 1961
30. 1962
31. 1963
Box 8
Legal
Folder
1. 1854 - 1859
2. 1860 - 1869
3. 1870 - 1879 #1
4. 1870 - 1879 #2
5. 1880 - 1889
6. 1890 - 1899
7. 1900 - 1909
8. 1910 - 1915
9. 1920 - 1929
10. 1930 - 1939
11. 1940 - 1949
Box 9
Attendance Reports
Folder
1. 1909 - 1914 Summary
2. 1909 Reports
3. 1910 Reports
4. 1911 Reports
5. 1912 Reports
6. 1913 Reports
7. 1914 Reports
Box 10
Miscellaneous
Folder
1. Inventories, 1933
2. Receipts Books, 1956 - 1962
3. Printed Material
4. Photographs, 1971
Box 11
Miscellaneous
Folder
1. Outline of Plans Equipment for Penal Institutions
2. Reports of Other State Prisons:
Detroit House of Corrections, 1863
Detroit House of Correction, 1870
Kansas State Penitentiary, 1877
California State Board of Prison Directors, 1888
Indiana State Prison, North, 1888
Wisconsin State Prison, 1887
Vermont House of Correction, 1892
Illinois State Reformatory, 1895
Nevada State Prison, 1895
3. Monroe County Penitentiary Annual Report, 1937 - 1945
4. Monroe County Penitentiary Annual Report, 1946 - 1952
5. Monroe County Penitentiary Annual Report, 1954 - 1959
Box 12
Miscellaneous
Folder
1. Record of Miscellaneous Services of Superintendent Thomas P. Riley, 1963
2. Miscellaneous Contracts, 1920 - 1924
3. Miscellaneous Contracts, 1925 - 1929
4. Miscellaneous Contracts, 1930 - 1934
5. Miscellaneous Contracts, 1935 - 1938
Volume Contents
Ledger: 4 Volumes. Balance books of accounts with merchants, suppliers, municipal groups, and other counties -- different accounts of prison departments.
1. 1854 - Sept. 1862
2. Sept. 1862 - 1869
3. 1870 - 1889
4. 1890 - 1914
Inventories of Property: 3 Volumes. General inventory and debt evaluation of materials, furniture, purchases, equipment and repair costs.
5. 1855 - 1866
6. Sept. 1867 - Sept. 1869
7. Sept. 1869 - Dec. 1908
List of Employees: 1 Volume. List of Monroe County Penitentiary employees, includes wages and debts for each person.
8. Nov. 1857 - Dec. 1871
Day Book: 4 Volumes. Daily accounting of expenses and income of penitentiary with details of who, what, where, and why for each.
9. July 1858 - Oct. 1865
10. July 1861 - Sept. 1863
11. Oct. 1863 - Sept. 1867
12. Oct. 1867 - Nov. 1870
Shoe Shop Time Book: 5 Volumes. Month by month account of prisoner work attendance, list of how employed and when discharged.
13. June 1859 - Oct. 1865
14. Jan. 1871 - March 1873
15. April 1873 - Jan. 1876
16. May 1881 - Oct. 1883
17. Sept. 1885 - Nov. 1886
Cash Books: 6 Volumes. Daily cash flow and balance of accounts with various merchants and others. Listing of name, purpose, and amount.
18. April 1859 - March 1867
19. Oct. 1867 - March 1875
20. April 1875 - Oct. 1886
21. Jan. 1887 - Sept. 1892
22. Oct. 1892 - Aug. 1902
23. Aug. 1902 - Sept. 1912
Letterpress Copies of Letters: 1 Volume. Letterpress copies of correspondence, accounting sheets and bills.
24. 1861 - 1869
Journals: 3 Volumes. Journal of payments to merchants and companies, listing by day of month and often divided into appropriate department of the penitentiary.
25. 1862 - 1889
26. 1889 - 1903
27. 1903 - 1912
Cooper Shop Accounts: 1 Volume. Daily account of number of barrels made, and from what materials they were made.
28. 1864
Journal: 1 Volume. Daily accounts of debits and credits with listing of merchant, item purchased, quantity, and total prices.
29. 1870 - 1879
Wooden Ware Accounts: 2 Volumes. Accounts of woodenware deliveries which include date, quantity and item, cost, and purchaser.
30. 1870 - 1872
31. 1872 - 1884
Daily Prisoner Record: 1 Volume. Mainly daily record of prisoners received and discharged with total enrollment. Record of escapes with dates.
32. 1875 - 1876
Lower Shop Time Book: 3 Volumes. Month by month record of work attendance.
33. Jan. 1875 - Dec. 1879
34. Jan. 1880 - Sept. 1881
35. Oct. 1881 - Aug. 1883
Labor Account: 1 Volume. Record of prisoner payments with date, amount, number of days worked, pay rate, and if actually paid.
36. 1877 - 1882
Monthly Statements: 1 Volume. Monthly credit and debit statements with merchant or company to which the statement applies.
37. 1898 - 1906
Prisoner's Cash Accounts: 3 Volumes. Account and balance of items at unit price, total money, specified by numbers, probably coded to merchant companies.
38. 1894 - 1905
39. 1905 - 1910
40. 1910 - 1912
Day Book and Journal: 2 Volumes. Alphabetical list of individual prisoner cash account, probably wage payments.
41. 1898 - 1908
42. 1908 - 1912
Dispensary Report: 1 Volume. Monthly record of medical treatments and medicines rendered to named patients.
43. 1899 - 1907
Annual Statistical Reports: 20 Volumes. Total statistics of prison, e.g. prisoners age, average prison term, deaths, social relations, amount working, breakdown on crimes committed, etc.
44. 1899 - 1916 Record of money accounts with a net balance.
45. 1917 - 1918
46. 1918 - 1919
47. 1922 - 1923
48. 1923 - 1924
49. 1924 - 1925
50. 1928 - 1929
51. 1935 - 1936 Warrants records in alphabetical listing by person abducted, person abducting and date of warrant discharge.
52. 1936 - 1937
53. 1937 - 1938
54. 1938 - 1939
55. 1939 - 1940
56. 1940 - 1941
57. 1941 - 1942
58. 1942 - 1943
59. 1943 - 1944 Warrants records in alphabetical listing by person abducted, person abducting and date of warrant discharge.
60. 1944 - 1945
61. 1945 - 1946
62. 1946 - 1947
63. 1947 - 1948
Prisoner's Personal Belongings: 1 Volume. Record includes individual prisoner's name, date belongings received, date prisoner discharged and item held.
64. 1901 - 1912
General Supplies: 1 Volume . Monthly accounts and balance on salaries, fuel expenses, contingency fund and power house fund.
65. 1905 - 1908
Monroe County Power Plant: 1 Volume. Monthly listing of accounts and balance for power plant, salaries, and supplies.
66. 1905 - 1910
Non-Monroe Area Attorneys: 1 Volume. Record of attorneys including name, address, date hired, wage paid, and case hired for.
67. Feb. 23, 1906 - 1908
Sales Inventory Attachments, Executive Sales: 1 Volume. Accounts on sales undated, money received from sale and parties involved in sale.
68. 1906 - 1908
Ledger--Payments to Lawyers: 1 Volume. Record and balance of lawyers paid, date of payment, amount paid and case undertaken for payment.
69. 1906 - 1908
Journal: 1 Volume. Accounts and balance of individuals by date. Separate section for Auburn convicts with record of name, offense, court tried in, sentence and fees.
70. 1906 - 1908
Journal--Daily Income and Expense: 6 Volumes. Daily account and balance of income and expenses with note of merchant or company dealt with.
71. 1906
72. 1906
73. 1907
74. 1907
75. 1908
76. 1908
Real Estate from Sheriff's Sale: 1 Volume. Newspaper clippings, receipts and contracts plus account and balance of sheriff's sales.
77. 1906 - 1908
Cash Book: 1 Volume. Account and balance of payment to workers for special jobs and date of receipts for work.
78. 1908 - 1911
Farm Accounts: 1 Volume. Account and balance of farm production.
79. 1912 - 1919
General Ledger: 2 Volumes. Monthly credit and debit statements, running account with merchant or company name and services rendered.
80. Oct. 1912 - 1914
81. 1914 - 1920
Scrapbook of Monthly Reports: 2 Volumes. Printed material on expenses and accounts of penitentiary, especially of power plant department.
82. 1912 - 1926
83. 1926 - 1934
Distribution of Claims, Maintenance: 1 Volume. Claims on maintenance with listing of companies and merchants performing the services.
84. 1914 - 1918
Purchasing Department Requisitions: 9 Volumes. Requisites of all general needs.
85. 1917 - 1918
86. 1918 - 1919
87. 1919 - 1920
88. 1920 - 1921
89. 1921 - 1922
90. 1923 - 1925
91. 1925 - 1926
92. 1926 - 1927
93. 1927 - 1928
Receipt Book, Fines Paid: 1 Volume. Receipt book for fines paid.
94. 1929 - 1933
Medical Report: 3 Volumes
95. 1929 - 1930 Daily account of medicines rendered upon named patients
96. 1930 - 1935 Record of name, sex, and date of prisoners given blood tests and injections.
97. 1935 - 1940 Record of name, sex, and date of prisoners given blood tests and injections.
Medical Record: 1 Volume. Alphabetical listing of patient, affliction and date of treatment.
98. 1935 - 1940
1938
Accounts, General and Farm Production: 1 Volume. Daily account and balance of credits and debits of farm produce with listing of merchants dealt with and an account of crops and weights produced.
99. 1935 - 1937
Dairy Products: 1 Volume. Separate daily accounts of following areas: Milk production, egg production, bread and roll production, plus a record of cows including sex, date sold, place of purchase, etc.
100. 1938 -1942
Daily Record of Newly Admitted Prisoners: 1 Volume. Alphabetical index of incoming prisoners with name, birthplace, address, marital status, sex, birthday and blood test results.
101. 1948 - 1949
Daily Record of Number of Prisoners: 1 Volume. Daily record by county until March 1952; then just total number in and out.
102. 1948 - 1954
Employees Vacation and Sick Leave: 2 Volumes. In roll book form, listing alphabetically by name with days of vacation or sick leave checked off.
103. 1952 - 1955
104. 1956 - 1960
Indexes--No dates: 3 Volumes. Index list of prisoners, merchants, and companies apparently dealt with in some financial way. Each entry is followed by a code number.
105. n.d.
106. n.d.
107. n.d.


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