: This photograph from the Ohio Penitentiary in Columbus is of James Willie Brown, age 28. His formal attire suggests that the photograph was taken during his trial or sentencing. Brown, along with Cook Jenkins, was convicted of robbing and murdering Jacob Reinstatler, a Cincinnati jeweler; both men were executed. The caption at the bottom reads: “No. 241, James Willie Brown of Hamilton County, Legally Electrocuted April 6th, 1945, for the Murder of Jacob Reinstatler.”
In 1885 the Ohio Penitentiary in Columbus, Ohio, became the location for all executions, which previously took place in the various county seats. In 1896 the Ohio General Assembly mandated that electrocution replace hanging as the form of capital punishment. The Ohio Penitentiary regularly offered tours as well as souvenir photographs and postcards of the building and prisoners on death row.
A total of 315 prisoners, both men and women, were executed in the electric chair known as “Old Sparky” between 1897 and 1963.
View on Ohio Memory.
: AL08295 Subjects
: Ohio History--State and Local Government--Law; Ohio History--State and Local Government--Corrections; Capital punishment--Ohio--History; Death Row; Ohio Penitentiary (Columbus, Ohio); Electrocution; Prisons--Ohio Places
: Columbus (Ohio); Franklin County (Ohio); Cincinnati (Ohio); Hamilton County (Ohio)