: This photograph from the Ohio Penitentiary in Columbus is of 26-year-old laborer James Griffen of Cleveland. His formal attire suggests that the photograph was taken during his trial or sentencing. Griffen, along with Robert Britton, was convicted of murdering Henry Lee Webb in Cleveland, Ohio. Both men were executed on the same night. The caption at the bottom reads: “No. 254, James Griffen of Cuyahoga County, Legally Electrocuted November 28, 1947, for the Murder of Mr. Henry Lee Webb.”
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.
: AL08308 Subjects
: Ohio History--State and Local Government--Law; Capital punishment--Ohio--History; Death row; Electrocution; Ohio History--State and Local Government--Corrections; Ohio Penitentiary (Columbus, Ohio); Prisons--Ohio Places
: Columbus (Ohio); Franklin County (Ohio); Cleveland (Ohio); Cuyahoga County (Ohio)