Sentences of Inmates the Eastern State Penitentiary

This app graphs and maps the average sentences passed for inmates admitted to the Eastern State Pennitentiary. The results present information collected in Volumes A, B, and D of the Eastern State Penitentiary's Admission books, which cover the years 1830-1858. Volume C of the Admission Books, covering the years 1850-1853 remains unaccounted for. These books are held in the collections of the American Philosophical Society.

There are nearly 1,730 entries in these three Admission Books but researchers can narrow this down by manipulating a variety of parameters to see the average prison sentence awarded to inmates of a particular demographic, to inmates charged with a particular crime, or to see how the length of prison sentences varied by year.

This app also generates a list of inmates that match the parameters entered in the drop-down menus, along with a link to the Admission Book in which that inmate's information was recorded.

Length of Inmates' Sentence

This graph shows variations in the length of inmates' prison sentence.

The position of each dot on this graph reflects the length of an inmate's sentence in months, while the size of the dot reflects the amount of times that sentence was passed down.


Sentencing Locations

This map show how sentencing varied in length and frequency in different places.

Based on the selections made in the drop-down menus, the size of the red dot reveals the average length of prison sentences passed, while the size the blue dot indicates roughly how many cases are represented in that average.


These results include: