San Francisco is one of the most liberal cities in the US. Therefore, apart from business, social life is growing here. There are various forms of entertainment waiting for visitors or residents. Loads of interesting meeting places, restaurants and clubs mean that life in Cisco almost never dies. This state of affairs has been maintained for a very long time. In contrast to the bustling city, about 2 km north of the shoreline, there is a small island. It is best known under the name Alcatraz.
We associate Alcatraz primarily as a high-security prison. It had operated for 29 years from 1934 to 1963 and had been managed at that time by four heads. To “The Rock”, as Alcatraz was otherwise described, were sent the worst criminals or those who managed to escape from other penal prisons earlier. The most famous gangster serving the sentence on The Rock was Al Capone. Criminals often stressed that the worst punishment was the view of San Francisco and the nighttime sounds of the city.
The core of infrastructure of the island are residential buildings for guards, gardens, a large water tank (no running water on the island) and a prison pavilion. The latter was divided into zones, which prisoners gave names to famous streets or squares. So there were, for example, Times Square or Michigan Square.
The last corridor hardly had access to daylight. The most problematic prisoners were punished here. Nobody wanted to be sent to a solitary confinement. A narrow, completely darkened cell, without any comforts in which people were going mad.
Of course, prison employees lived in slightly different conditions. The headmaster had his office with a beautiful view. There were also administration offices and dining rooms with a Coca-Cola refrigerator. These contrasts were certainly a great burden for the guards. On the one hand, serious criminals who were locked in the cells and dark corridors, on the other a beautiful view, a fantastic garden and the opportunity to take a deep breath in the California sun.
An interesting place in Alcatraz was the canteen. At one time there were many prisoners here who had access to the cutlery. It was not hard under such conditions to cause a problem. However, no incident has been reported here for 29 years. Why? This you will learn from our mini-document about Alcatraz next Saturday! An interesting fact is that the food served to prisoners was of a very high quality. Apparently, it was as good as in the best San Francisco restaurants!