Work was a very common thing for inmates of early prisons, and it is also a common thing even in today’s world. Although the type of work has differed throughout the centuries whether it be manual labor, or making license plates the fact is that work has been a major factor in prisons throughout their existence. In the beginning of prisons existing, the main type of work was manual labor, such as breaking up rocks, or even cleaning up the sides of roads inmates were made to do anything and everything the prisons saw fitting. The inmates that were a part of the early prisons during the 18th century were made to do work such as breaking up rocks in the yard and doing other very simple but extremely harsh on the body tasks. The main reason the inmates did this type of work was because they were not able to eat unless they agreed to do the work that the prisons were asking of the inmates. (Hill, D. 2004) It was either break up rocks in the yard or sit in your cell all day and never get fed. This system stayed in place throughout prisons for a very long time, because it gave the inmates something to do but it also gave them a reason to stay alive, because if they did not work, they didn’t get any food and they wound up dying shortly thereafter. The 19th century saw a much more organized type of prison system, a lot more inmates were kept in the same facility and new buildings were being built all the time to serve as more prisons and penitentiaries. The first national penitentiary was built in Millbank in London, in 1816. It held 860 prisoners, kept in separate cells. Work in this prison was mainly centered on simple tasks such as picking 'coir' (tarred rope) and weaving. The work was a lot less harsh but there were still a lot of work for the inmates to accomplish and if they did it well enough they might even get there sentence shortened, and it would also make their stay in the prison a whole lot easier. The...
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