Historic Albemarle County Jail No. 5

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The Historic Albemarle County Jail was built in 1876 and still remains standing in Court Square. Albemarle County kept prisoners at the jail until 1974.

As of 2011, the jail is closed to the public but there are efforts afoot to turn it into a museum.[1] In August 2014 the Albemarle County Board of Supervisors voted to direct county staff to collaborate with the Albemarle Charlottesville Historical Society to develop a lease for the building. Stephen Meeks from the Historical Society said he expects the museum to have permanent exhibits on the history of Albemarle, Charlottesville and jails. The museum is expected to cost $1 million.[2]

Construction notes

The jail was built by George Wallace Spooner in 1876.[3]

Notable events

  • 1905: Former Mayor J. Samuel McCue is hung for murdering his wife. This was the last public execution in Virginia history.[3]

Local Voices, Local History

VIDEO CREDITS: Narrated by Steven Meeks;
Graphic design: Jen Fleischer; Project Manager: Kristin Rourke.


  1. Web. Historic jail to open doors to public, Ted Strong, Daily Progress, World Media Enterprises, March 26, 2011, retrieved March 28, 2011.
  2. Web. Old Albemarle Jail could become museum, Reuben Jones, Charlottesville Tomorrow, August 10, 2014, retrieved August 12, 2014.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Web. Jailhouse talk: County developing re-use plan, Dave McNair, The Hook, Better Publications LLC Print. June 20, 2009 , 825, .

External links