Friday, March 7, 2008

Old Stone Jail House

Anderson Jail House

The Anderson jail house is located at the northwest corner of Balls Ferry Road and Freeman and South streets in Anderson, and the Fall River Mills jail house is located at the Fort Crook Museum at the corner of Highway 299 and Fort Crook Museum Road in Fall River Mills.

Both jails were built in 1936 as Works Project Administration projects for Shasta County. They were used mainly as overnight holding cells. Anderson historian Gene Vonk remembers the Anderson jail as being a place where drunks were held overnight to dry out.

The first to be built was the Anderson jail house. When it was completed, the building forms and crew moved on to Fall River Mills to build a duplicate jail there. A crew of seven men was employed to build the jails. The first prisoner in the Fall River Mills jail was one of the men who helped construct it.

Each jail had two cells, separated by a vestibule, and each cell contained a wash basin, drinking fountain, toilet and a cot with a blanket. An oil stove located in the vestibule provided heating. The jail houses were constructed with steel-reinforced concrete walls and floors. Housecleaning was performed with a water hose that was used to clean the cells and toilets.

The Anderson jail sits at the same spot where it was constructed. The Fall River Mills jail house was moved from its original location near the center of town to the museum grounds.

Both jails opened in 1936. The Fall River Mills jail closed in 1956. It is unknown when officials stopped using the Anderson jail.

Fall River Mills Jail House