Story: Prisons

Auckland jail, stocks and gallows, 1850s

This is (left to right) the courthouse, guardroom, stocks, jail and gallows at the corner of Queen and Victoria Streets in Auckland in the 1850s. The jail, little more than a large hut, is typical of those built in colonial towns. Colonial jails tended to be underfunded and overcrowded. The stocks and gallows illustrate the range of punishments available and the fact that imprisonment was seen as a deterrent or a means of retribution rather than a means to rehabilitation.

Using this item

Auckland City Libraries - Tāmaki Pātaka Kōrero, Sir George Grey Special Collections
Reference: 4-2587

Permission of Auckland City Libraries Tāmaki Pātaka Kōrero must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

Peter Clayworth, 'Prisons - Early prisons, 1840–1879', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 20 July 2024)

Story by Peter Clayworth, published 20 Jun 2012