The Tours

2021 Prison Tours Resume

Dear Tour group operators,
We are excited to announce that tours will resume on Friday, July 30th this year. It is great to be able to again share the history of this prison and the city that housed it. Join us soon for the 2021 season.

Michigan's First Prison

“Michigan”, a brand new state in what was the wild wild west of the 1830’s needed a prison. Six villages and an established city fought tooth and nail to get it.

This story and many more, take you through the history of Michigan’s first prison, the National Guard Armory it became and its current evolution as an artist’s community. Go back in time with a live story telling guide as you relive the history of infamous prisoners, the politics and the policies of an era long past. It is the story of a small village that became a great city with the help of a huge prison.

Bring your camera as you explore solitary, the yard and Michigan’s first permanent cell block. These are stories that you will retell for years to come.

Allow two hours for this tour that ends in our gift shop.