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Home > Crime and Punishment in Durham > Prison Reforms > The work of John Howard
 

 The work of John Howard

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Extracts from The State of Prisons in England and Wales by John Howard. Click to enlarge.

Extracts from The State of Prisons in England and Wales by John Howard. Click to enlarge.

Extracts from The State of Prisons in England and Wales by John Howard, 1777 (DUL ref: Winterbottom+ K2/1)

 

John Howard toured the country in the 1770s visiting many gaols and houses of correction, including Durham. He published his findings in 1777. We are going to use his findings for Durham (an enlarged version and transcript are available) to see why reform was needed.

1. Read the first and final paragraph carefully. Howard is describing the conditions of the debtors prison. Make a list of all the things that Howard finds at fault.

2. Now read the second paragraph about the felons' prison. Make another list of all the things that Howard thinks are wrong with the prison.

3. Do you think Howard was shocked by the conditions in Durham gaol? What do you think the reaction of ordinary people would have been?

Once you have finished, find out more about Howard's views on the prison system in general.

Find out more about Howard's views on prisons

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