Kingston Penitentiary

Originally constructed in 1833?1834, and officially opened on June 1, 1835 as the "Provincial Penitentiary of the Province of Upper Canada," the Kingston Penitentiary was one of the oldest prisons in continuous use in the world at the time of its closure in 2012. It was one of nine prisons in the Kingston area that ranged from minimum-security facilities to the maximum-security facilities Kingston Penitentiary and Millhaven Institution (which was initially built to replace Kingston Pen).

Kingston Pen, or simply "KP", was well-known for its high-profile prisoners and a few famous escapes. On a literary note, Charles Dickens visited back in 1842, and made mention of the prison in his book American Writing For General Circulation.  Today, getting a look inside isn't easy. KP has occasional tours open to the public, but the tickets sell out within a few hours. 

To learn more about the Kingston Pen, visitors can go directly across the street to the Correctional Service of Canada Museum where a life-size replica of an inmate's cell can be seen, as well as artifacts and historical records. 

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