Living History: Workhouse Prison Lecture Series Begins

Uncover the Prison in Your Backyard at the Workhouse Arts Center!

Wednesday, the Workhouse will invite everyone to uncover the prison in their own backyard by attending Workhouse Prison Museum’s first ever Prison Lecture Series. Starting in January, attendees will be taken on a historical journey through the life and times of the Lorton Prison. Each month will focus on a unique perspective or story from the experiences at the former Workhouse.

The Prison Lecture Series was inspired by the questions of the Prison Museum’s visitors, according to Laura McKie the Workhouse Museum Committee Chair. Being unable to answer everyone’s questions, in combination with former employees and prisoners wishing to share their life changing experiences, the lecture series is the perfect way to connect the questions with the answers. By giving focus to the topics and discussions in the form of lectures, the audience will be able to get a clear picture of what the Workhouse was really like during that time.

The Workhouse Prison Museum is currently located within one of the artist studio buildings at the Workhouse Arts Center, a temporary location until funds can be secured to renovate another building that actually contains prisoner cells. Laura McKie hopes that this lecture series will gain momentum within the community and rally support for a more permanent location. “As people became more acquainted with the knowledge and history of the prison, we hope to gain excitement and interest in the permanent museum.”

The history of the Lorton prison is important to the surrounding community because it is a reflection of what was happening in society at the time. “We hope in this new museum to tell the stories of the people who lived them,” Laura McKie explains. The Prison Museum has worked to collect oral histories of the experiences of former inmates and employees so that they will be able to re-create for future generations the rich history of the Lorton prison.

There is still plenty of room left at the first lecture this Wednesday. The lectures are free but require an online reservation beforehand. Click here to make your reservation. Additionally, the Prison Museum will be open special hours for attendees from 6-7:15pm before each lecture.

Planning on attending? Please leave your comments below! After the presentation, let us know what you have learned and what you would like to see next time.




Stop by and visit us! 

The Workhouse is open Wednesday – Saturday from 11am – 7pm and Sundays from 12 – 5pm.  The Workhouse Prison Museum is open Wednesday – Friday from 12 – 3pm and Saturday – Sunday from 12 – 4pm.  Visit www.WorkhouseArts.org for more information, to purchase tickets or to register for classes.

Camela Speer

Director of Marketing

Workhouse Arts Center . . . Escape to Arts & Entertainment!



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