19th Century Prisons: what were they before they became prisons?

The original title of the below video is "Tartarian Prisons: Not the Original Use". It was published on the Curious Life YouTube channel. The author analyzes beautiful structures, which somehow ended up serving as prisons. Some of the buildings are truly beautiful, and their construction had to cost a lot of money?

-the video exists no longer-

Also, one of the legitimate questions was the capacity of those prisons with respect to the population size at the time. With barely any people in the mid 19th century US, why were these prisons so big? Who were the clients?

Example: Eastern State Penitentiary
Designed by John Haviland and opened on October 25, 1829, Eastern State is considered to be the world's first true penitentiary. Eastern State's revolutionary system of incarceration, dubbed the "Pennsylvania system" or separate system, encouraged separate confinement (the warden was legally required to visit every inmate every day, and the overseers were mandated to see each inmate three times a day) as a form of rehabilitation.


Eastern State Penitentiary
Originally, inmates were housed in cells that could only be accessed by entering through a small exercise yard attached to the back of the prison; only a small portal, just large enough to pass meals, opened onto the cell blocks. This design proved impractical, and in the middle of construction, cells were constructed that allowed prisoners to enter and leave the cell blocks through metal doors that were covered by a heavy wooden door to filter out noise. The halls were designed to have the feel of a church.

Prison and its prisoner?

Some believe that the doors were small so prisoners would have a harder time getting out, minimizing an attack on a security guard. Others have explained the small doors forced the prisoners to bow while entering their cell. This design is related to penance and ties to the religious inspiration of the prison. The cells were made of concrete with a single glass skylight, representing the "Eye of God", suggesting to the prisoners that God was always watching them.
The video contains many amazing examples of the so-called "prison" architecture of various building styles. Please take a moment to watch, and share your opinions. If you have any worthy photographs of the older prisons, please share as well. Add a little description to the buildings, if you can.

KD: In reference to the Eastern State (PA) Penitentiary, here is an interesting sentence:
  • The foundations for Eastern State had been laid in 1787, when a group of Philadelphians concerned with the overly harsh treatment and unsanitary conditions that they witnessed in the Pennsylvania Prisons organized the Philadelphia Society for Alleviating the Miseries of Public Prisons.
The 1790 population was 434k. How many prisons did they need in 1787. Another question is, how many they already had? And most importantly, who cared about prisoners at the time?

Really, who was incarcerated in those multiple prisons? Tartarians?

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