Buildings associated with the Prison but outside the walls.
An undated WH Smith Kingsway series card S/N: 8172 of Dartmoor Prison Quarry.
A postally used card by J. C. Budd, Princetown. Sent from Princetown on the 9th of July 1914. The Waiting Room sign can just be glimpsed beside the right hand side of the arch.
An undated card from W. E. Tooker's Series, Princetown, showing the Governor's House.
A Chapman card S/N 18874 from the Western Morning News Prison Mutiny commemorative series of 1932.
An undated Valentine's Series postcard.
Some times I think postcard publishers just made things up as they went along. "We need a postcard of Portland Prison", "Will this do?", "Yeah, they'll never know the difference."
A Frith's Series view card. Postally used from Ashburton October 6 1911, but a view from a much earlier date.
Another Frith's view of the Prison gates. Taken a few seconds later than the previous image. This clearer view allows a couple of details to be enhanced:
The ornate design of the lamps used outside the prison walls (and throughout the parts of the village lit by gas street lighting can now be seen.) Also, it is possible to read the writing on the sign to the right of the guard: "NOTICE. Strangers cannot be admitted to any part of the prison, or premises unless by an order from the Secretary of State."
An undated W. H. Smith's view of the Prison gate.
And the next one in the WH Smith series. The dogs have been seen off by the arrival of a group of Prison Officers, shift change perhaps? For some strange reason several of them seem to be carrying sacks - returning empty ones or bringing sacks to be filled I wonder?
An undated later Chapman series postcard. A couple of things to note. A bell has appeared over the main gate and a notice has been posted to the right hand side pillar pointing out the prohibition now in place against taking photographs of inmates or prison buildings. Which may go some way to explaining this horrible image...
If you can no longer take photographs of prison inmates, what can you do instead to liven up a pretty awful picture? Yes, draw in an imaginary work party with their equally imaginary guards. Genius! No publisher for this one by the way, I guess they were too ashamed of themselves.
I am grateful to H.H. Benning for this image of the Prison gate from the 1960's.
A card published by S. B. Wadge, Tavistock. Postally used 15 August 1932. It shows the scene after the Prison Mutiny in 1932. Both Pathe news and the Western Morning News had aeroplanes flying over the Prison to take photographs and film of the aftermath of the riot. I imagine that this must be the cause of the evident interest and craned necks of the figures in the foreground.
A card from an unknown publisher, postally used in 1953. By the time this view was taken, the gas lamps had been removed from the outer arch.
An undated card published by E. A. Sweetman & Sons Ltd, Tunbridge Wells.
A Peacock's Series card. Postally used July 15 1905.
A Chapman card S/N 18876 from the Western Morning News Prison Mutiny commemorative series of 1932.
An undated Frith's card, S/N: 41953. The notices on the outside gate pillars are marked V. R. which indicates a date of 1901 or before. Note the conventional looking gas lamp holders on the gates. The ones fitted earlier were of a hexagonal design.
A copy struck from the original Frith's negative shows that the above scene had a couple of interested onlookers originally.
An undated card with two publishers. It is marked as being a Frith's Series card, but also as being from Lord's Cafe, Princetown, No. 22578.
Occasionally Chapman liked to take views from an identical viewpoint with a gap of a few years between them, as can be seen from this card and the one below it. Though undated, this card S/N: 8828 looks to have been taken a couple of years before the one below.
A Chapman card S/N: 10949. Unbeknownst to me when I bought it, this card actually has a direct family connection. It was sent to a Mr. Thomas Willcocks, Church House, Walkhampton, Nr. Horrabridge August 2 1911. It reads "Sir. Received the money all safe, thank you for the same. Every thing is all square between us as far as I know. Yours Truly. Edward Worth." Edward Worth was my paternal great grandfather.
A sadly foxed and faded stereoscopic image of the main gate of Dartmoor Prison. The reverse of the card simply has the word Furze for the publisher.
An undated card published by H. Lord, The Cafe, Princetown.
A view of General Booth, the founder of the Salvation Army on his visit to Dartmoor Prison in October 1906. The view taken in the driveway of the Governor's House. General William Booth carried out several motor-car tours of the country in the early part of the 20th Century. His visit to Dartmoor Prison was the last one of his 1906, 100 date tour.
A card from an unknown publisher postally used September 4th 1908. The card was sent to Miss L. Worth, Governor's House, H. M. Prison, Exeter. The card reads "Dear Lottie. We were so sorry we did not see you when you were home. It is wet weather here. We have had Bella home for a week, she goes on Friday. It was not much of a fair this year. With Love from all. L. H."
A card published by S. B. Wadge, Barn Studio, Tavistock, showing the unveiling of the memorial arch commemorating the rededication of the American Prisoner of War Memorial at Dartmoor Prison. A fascinating if brief film of this event can be viewed at the British Pathe website here.
A Chapman card S/N: 17563 showing the memorial arch shortly after unveiling.
An undated WH Smith card, S/N: S 9073 showing the central memorial of the American Cemetery.
A Chapman card S/N : 10953. Postally used March 26 1920. Looking at the two cards above, it's obvious that postcard publishers were none too scrupulous about copying each others work if a card proved popular.
An undated card from W. E. Tooker's Series showing the Prison farm.
An undated card published by W. E. Tooker, Princetown. Almost certainly taken within the prison farm.