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Branch Jail.

Beloved Jail Comes Home

Back in 1897, the California gold rush community of Jamestown had a tiny jail to hold lawbreakers until they could be shipped to a bigger jail in the town next door. The jail was so small that it was eventually bought and trucked 60 miles west to be a part of "Pollardville," a Wild West attraction that also had what it claimed was the World's Smallest Post Office (taken from another California town).

Now Pollardville is itself history -- sold off for condo development -- and Jamestown has its jail back as a tourist attraction. The jail is being given a place of honor in downtown Rocca Park, and bulletproof resin windows, which may protect it from vengeful progeny of its former inhabitants. The jail, only 18-foot square, is roughly the same size as this tiny church, and will be formally dedicated on June 7.

According to a story in a local paper, the Union Democrat, the "new downtown Jamestown street lights, that are old fashioned in look, really set off the jail."

No word on what happened to the Worlds Smallest Post Office.


Rocca Park

Main St., Jamestown, CA
Hwy 49/108 to Jamestown, exit onto Main Street. The Jail is on the west side of Main Street, in Rocca Park.
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