Model of a gas chamber, Canon City, CO

America's Glamorous Gas Chambers

Stop here for a breather! And don't forget to check out America's Excellent Electric Chairs!



Cannibals & Gas Chambers

Colorado Territorial Prison Museum,
Canon City, Colorado

An actual gas chamber sits on the lawn of the Territorial Prison Museum, a little weather-worn, but nonetheless impressive. Two vintage cells sit outside, apparently used to store gardening tools.

Canon City, Colorado - Gas Chamber.
Canon City, Colorado - Gas Chamber.

Inside are more tributes to justice. Sit in the cell of Alferd Packer, America's favorite cannibal, who did time here! The wide main hall leads to side rooms featuring artifacts such as the actual hangman's noose of the last man to have his neck stretched in Colorado, prison contraband, a scale model of a gas chamber, and disciplinary paraphernalia used from 1871 to the present.

Thirty-two cells are outfitted with exhibits devoted to all aspects of prison life (substance abuse, rioting, and isolation, among others). One cell features an exhibit on 11-year old Anton Wood, youngest person in Colorado ever convicted of murder. Another contains a feebly animated "Sheriff Sam" robot, creaking and clunking while it relates the career of warden Roy Best, who wound up in prison himself for "mass flogging" of prisoners.

Checking out the gas chamber in Rawlins, Wyoming.
Checking out the gas chamber in Rawlins, Wyoming.

Oh yeah. The tally:

77 executions: 45 by hanging, 32 by gas



Strap Me In!

Wyoming Frontier Prison, Rawlins, Wyoming

The prison closed in 1982 and opened for visitors in 1987. Advertised as "There's a place behind bars for you," prison tours are staffed by enthusiastic youngsters who happily allow all to sit inside the gas chamber where five lawbreakers were executed. They'll strap you in, and even shut the door if you so desire.

Three times a week, night tours are offered in pitch darkness. When one guide tells of prison suicides, another tosses a dummy off the second floor into the middle of the shocked group. Ex-inmates often take the tour and bore others with their nostalgic stories.

RoadsideAmerica.com Team Field Report

Museum of Colorado Prisons

Address:
201 N 1st St., Canon City, CO
Directions:
On the west side of Canon City, just north of the town's new prison on First and Macon Avenue.
Hours:
Summer - daily 8:30 am - 6 pm. Check hours for off-season. (Call to verify)
Phone:
719-269-3015
RA Rates:
Major Fun
Save to My Sights

RoadsideAmerica.com Team Field Report

Wyoming Frontier Prison Museum

Address:
500 W. Walnut St., Rawlins, WY
Directions:
I-80 exit 211. Turn east onto Spruce St and drive 1.5 miles. Turn left onto 5th St., two blocks to Walnut St. The Prison will be straight ahead.
Hours:
Daily summer 8-5, hrs vary off season. (Call to verify)
Phone:
307-324-4422
RA Rates:
Major Fun
Save to My Sights

Explore Thousands of Unique Roadside Landmarks!

Strange and amusing destinations in the US and Canada are our specialty. Start here.
Use RoadsideAmerica.com's Attraction Maps to plan your next road trip.

October 22, 2014

My Sights

Create and Save Your Own Crazy Road Trip!

Try My Sights

Roadside America app
Roadside Presidents app

Sight of the Week

Sight of the Week

San Francisco Dungeon, San Francisco, California (Oct 20-26, 2014)

SotW Archive

USA and Canada Tips and Stories

Latest Visitor Tips

Sightings. Arrives without warning. Leaves no burn marks. A free newsletter from RoadsideAmerica.com. Subscribe now!
RoadsideAmerica.com Hotel & Motel Finder

Special online rates for hotels & motels.

Book Online Now