The Tombs

Tombs PrisonTombsTombs Police CourtManhattan Detention ComplexThe New York Halls of Justice and House of DetentionCity PrisonCriminal Courts BuildingFederal House of DetentionLas tumbasManhattan Police Court
The Tombs is the colloquial name for the Manhattan Detention Complex (formerly the Bernard B. Kerik Complex ), a municipal jail in Lower Manhattan at 125 White Street, as well as the nickname for three previous city-run jails in the former Five Points neighborhood of lower Manhattan, an area now known as the Civic Center.wikipedia
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Rebecca Salome Foster

Rebecca Salome Foster, a prison relief worker and missionary, became known as "the Tombs Angel" for her efforts to help and advocate on behalf of the many poor people held in squalid conditions at the Tombs.
She became known as the "Tombs Angel" because she attended to suspects held before trial at The New York Halls of Justice and House of Detention (otherwise known as "The Tombs").

Egyptian Revival architecture

Egyptian RevivalEgyptianEgyptian Revival style
The original Tombs was officially known as the Halls of Justice, built in 1838 in the Egyptian Revival architecture style. The first complex to have the nickname was an Egyptian Revival design by John Haviland completed in 1838.
The first Egyptian revival building in the United States was the 1824 synagogue building of Congregation Mikveh Israel Synagogue in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania It was followed by a series of major public buildings in the first half of the 19th century including the 1835 Philadelphia County Prison, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States, the 1836 Fourth District Police Station in New Orleans and the 1838 New York City jail known as the Tombs.

John Haviland

The first complex to have the nickname was an Egyptian Revival design by John Haviland completed in 1838.
Elsewhere, however, Haviland's reputation as a designer of prisons brought him important commissions, including the New Jersey Penitentiary, The Tombs in New York City, and prisons in Missouri, Rhode Island, and Arkansas.

Ernestine Schaffner

She was the first to do volunteer missionary work among those detained in the New York City Prison, known as The Tombs, having the financial means to indulge her charitable leanings in a substantial way.

Five Points, Manhattan

Five PointsFive Points districtBeekman's Swamp
The Tombs is the colloquial name for the Manhattan Detention Complex (formerly the Bernard B. Kerik Complex ), a municipal jail in Lower Manhattan at 125 White Street, as well as the nickname for three previous city-run jails in the former Five Points neighborhood of lower Manhattan, an area now known as the Civic Center.
The corrections facilities are the most direct link to the neighborhood's past: the infamous The Tombs jail/prison, in which many criminals from Five Points were incarcerated and quite a few executed, stood near the site of the current "City Prison Manhattan" at 125 White Street.

Harvey Wiley Corbett

CorbettCorbett, Harvey W.Harvey Corbett
The 795,000 square foot Art Deco architecture facility was designed by architects Harvey Wiley Corbett and Charles B. Meyers.
Corbett, continued to design some structures during the Great Depression, notably the massive New York City Criminal Courts Building in downtown Manhattan, the northern tower of which is the Manhattan Detention Center (The Tombs).

William J. Sharkey (murderer)

William J. Sharkey
Convicted murderer and New York City politician William J. Sharkey earned national notoriety for escaping from the prison disguised as a woman on November 22, 1872.
Throughout the trial and subsequent sentencing, Sharkey was confined in a prison adjacent to the courthouse called The Tombs.

Bartleby, the Scrivener

BartlebyBartleby the ScrivenerBartlebies
Later the narrator returns to find that Bartleby has been forcibly removed and imprisoned in the Tombs.

Pierre; or, The Ambiguities

Pierre: or, The AmbiguitiesPierrePierre, or the Ambiguities
Beset by debts, by fears of the threats of Glen Stanley and Lucy's brother, by the rejection of his book by its contracted publishers, by fears of his own incestuous passion for Isabel, and finally by doubts of the truth of Isabel's story, Pierre guns down Glen Stanley at rush hour on Broadway, and is taken to jail in The Tombs.

Collect Pond

Collect Pond ParkFresh Water PondKolck
The building site had been created by filling in the Collect Pond that was the principal water source for Colonial New York City.
New York's jail, nicknamed "The Tombs", was built on Centre Street in 1838 on the site of the pond and was constructed on a huge platform of hemlock logs in an attempt to give it secure foundations.

Bridewell (New York City jail)

Bridewell PrisonBridewell
It was a replacement for the Colonial-era Bridewell Prison located in City Hall Park, built in 1735 and demolished in 1838.
It stood until it was replaced by The Tombs in 1838; some of the dressed stone blocks from the Bridewell were used to construct The Tombs.

Kiss of Death (1947 film)

Kiss of Death1947 film noir classicTommy Udo
Much of the filming was done in New York, using locations as practical sets, including the Chrysler Building, the Criminal Courts Building at 100 Centre Street, the old Hotel Marguery at 270 Park Avenue at 48th Street, the St. Nicholas Arena, and the now-demolished Bronx House of Detention for Men (later known as the Bronx County Jail) at 151st Street and River Avenue.

Short Eyes (film)

Short Eyesfilmfilm adaptation
It was filmed in the Manhattan House of Detention for Men, otherwise known as The Tombs.

Edward Coleman (gangster)

Edward Coleman
Coleman was quickly arrested and convicted of murder in early January 1839, and on January 12, 1839, Coleman became the first man to be hanged at the newly constructed 1838 built Tombs Prison.

William M. Tweed

Boss TweedTweed RingWilliam Tweed
After his release from prison, a year spent in the Tombs, New York State filed a civil suit against Tweed, attempting to recover $6 million in embezzled funds.

John C. Colt

A fire destroyed part of the building on November 18, 1842, the same day that a notorious killer named John C. Colt was due to be hanged.
On September 28, 1842, after exhausting his final appeal, Colt was sentenced to death by hanging and remanded to New York City's infamous prison, the Tombs.

Memos from Purgatory

Memo from Purgatory
"Book Two: The Tombs" is expanded from an essay "Buried in the Tombs" for The Village Voice and describes Ellison's experience in The Tombs, as New York City's jail was nicknamed.

Frederick Clarke Withers

Frederick C. WithersFrederick WithersWithers, Frederick
The architects were Frederick Clarke Withers and Walter Dickson from Albany, who had partnered together since the 1880s.

Lower Manhattan

Downtown ManhattanLowerdowntown
The Tombs is the colloquial name for the Manhattan Detention Complex (formerly the Bernard B. Kerik Complex ), a municipal jail in Lower Manhattan at 125 White Street, as well as the nickname for three previous city-run jails in the former Five Points neighborhood of lower Manhattan, an area now known as the Civic Center.

Civic Center, Manhattan

Civic CenterCivic Center neighborhoodCity Hall Park
The Tombs is the colloquial name for the Manhattan Detention Complex (formerly the Bernard B. Kerik Complex ), a municipal jail in Lower Manhattan at 125 White Street, as well as the nickname for three previous city-run jails in the former Five Points neighborhood of lower Manhattan, an area now known as the Civic Center.

John Lloyd Stephens

StephensStephens, John Lloyd
There was a rumor at the time that the building was inspired by a picture of an Egyptian tomb that appeared in John Lloyd Stephens' Incidents of Travel in Egypt, although this appears to be untrue.

Centre Street (Manhattan)

Centre StreetCentreCentre St.
The building was 253 feet, 3 inches in length and 200 feet, 5 inches wide, and it occupied a full block, surrounded by Centre Street, Franklin Street, Elm Street (today's Lafayette), and Leonard Street.

Lafayette Street

Lafayette PlaceLafayetteElm
The building was 253 feet, 3 inches in length and 200 feet, 5 inches wide, and it occupied a full block, surrounded by Centre Street, Franklin Street, Elm Street (today's Lafayette), and Leonard Street.

Leonard Street

LeonardLeonard Streets
The building was 253 feet, 3 inches in length and 200 feet, 5 inches wide, and it occupied a full block, surrounded by Centre Street, Franklin Street, Elm Street (today's Lafayette), and Leonard Street.

Charles Dickens

DickensDickensianDickens, Charles
Charles Dickens wrote about the jail in American Notes: "Such indecent and disgusting dungeons as these cells, would bring disgrace upon the most despotic empire in the world!"