Welcome to the Washington Prison History Project

Welcome to the Washington Prison History Project, an online project documenting the history of prisoner activism and policy in our state. The site features a robust collection of prisoner-produced newspapers from the late 20th century; oral histories and testimonials about the Washington state prison system; research on local histories of punishment; and a text-adventure computer game designed inside a maximum security prison. 

Throughout its history, Washington state has been a national leader in both punitive policy and prison reform. By highlighting the stories of currently and formerly incarcerated people, the project provides a fuller understanding of what prison means and how it has changed over time. Explore highlights from the archive here, or visit our complete archive at diglib.uwb.edu/wphp.

This project is in development, and we are regularly adding new material. Please explore the site now and check back again soon!

Updates from the University of Washington Bothell's Project on Mass Incarceration in Washington State