ALCATRAZ – 10,000 Years of Life on the Rock


On March 21, 1963, U.S. Penitentiary Alcatraz closed its doors for the last time. For 29 years, the three-story concrete cell house atop the windswept 22-acre island in San Francisco Bay had housed inmates who had worn out their welcome in other penitentiaries—from incorrigible gangsters like Al Capone to petty thieves, murderers, kidnappers, and political prisoners. There would be no last-minute reprieve. Attorney General Robert Kennedy’s decision to retire the aging facility was final. Like its predecessor, the U.S. Army, which had operated a fortress then a military prison on the island from 1853 to 1933, the Bureau of Prisons could not afford the millions of dollars necessary to repair the crumbling prison. It had always been expensive to run and had generated controversy from the beginning. Now, with the pendulum swing of public opinion favoring rehabilitation, not retribution, Alcatraz had gone from being a necessary “big stick prison” during the violent Depression years to a symbol of a dated penal system criticized for dishing out “cruel and inhuman punishment” to caged men.…Alcatraz Island is a designated National Historic Landmark and part of Golden Gate National Recreation Area. It is located in San Francisco Bay, 1.25 miles from the mainland, and preserves the West Coast’s first lighthouse, Civil War-era military fortifications, remnants of the U.S. Federal Penitentiary cell house, signs of the 1969–1971 Native American occupation, and unique natural features, including endemic flora and fauna, naturalized flower gardens, tide pools, thriving bird colonies, and dramatic views.”

​This stunningly beautiful, oversized Alcatraz book is lavishly illustrated with breathtaking color imagery by America’s leading landscape photographers. In addition to the stunning photography, the book also includes detailed stories on human histories and those who resided on the island.

​Author: Nicky Leach

pages: 64

size: 10” x 13”

​Type: softcover

SKU: ISBN 978-1-58071-040-4 Categories: ,


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