Archive for September 10, 2015


Alcatraz Island has been the site of a lighthouse (the oldest one on the west coast of the USA); a military fortification; a military prison (from 1868); a federal prison (from 1933-1963) and is from 1972 a National Historic Landmark.


Its height of fame was reached during its time as a federal prison when many famous criminals were incarcerated here including Al Capone; Robert Stroud (made famous as ‘The Birdman of Alcatraz’ by a 1962 film) and ‘Machine gun’ Kelly.


As far as anyone knows no-one ever escaped from Alcatraz prison and made it safely to the shore, although 5 prisoners remain listed as ‘missing presumed drowned’