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Exhibits

  • Al Capone's Cell

    Alphonse “Scarface” Capone got his first taste of prison life in Philadelphia. 

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  • Prisons Today

    Prisons Today: Questions in the Age of Mass Incarceration elicits personal connections to recent historic changes in the U.S. criminal justice system, encourages reflection, supports dialogue, and suggests steps that visitors can take to help shape the evolution of the American criminal justice system moving forward.

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  • Jewish Life at Eastern State

    Eastern State’s synagogue was almost certainly the first built in an American prison. A set of workshops next to the synagogue has been converted into The William Portner Memorial Exhibit on Jewish Life at Eastern State Penitentiary. 

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  • Murals of the Catholic Chaplain's Office

    TEMPORARILY UNAVAILABLE. Warden Michael Cassidy built these impressive spaces for his offices in the 1880s. This space became the offices of the prison’s religious staff: the Protestant, Jewish, and Catholic chaplains. Inmate Lester Smith painted 23 murals on these walls in 1955.

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  • The Big Graph

    This 16-foot tall, 3,500-pound plate steel sculpture illustrates the unprecedented growth in U.S. incarceration rates since 1900.

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  • Hidden Lives Illuminated

    Hidden Lives Illuminated featured original animated films by currently incarcerated artists. Debuting in August 2019, 20 newly commissioned short films were projected onto the façade of Eastern State Penitentiary for 29 nights. All 20 original animated films are screened during public hours.

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2017 American Aliance of Museums Excellence in Exhibitions Overall Winner