It doesn't look like there was any damage to the outside, but about a week ago, there was a fire inside the walls of Joliet. It was very close to the inside of the gate (THE gate). Firefighters pumped water in from the outside, over the gate, because the gate is welded shut. The building that burned had been the prison's mattress factory. Here's a news story on YouTube:
More than just Blues Brothers fans would go on that tour. Lots of stuff has been filmed there.
Joliet Prison was featured in the 1980 John Landis film The Blues Brothers both as a filming location and as the namesake for "Joliet" Jake Blues (John Belushi).
Some characters from Saw II were ex-Joliet Prison inmates.
2007 - Prison Break 1966 - Get Smart, season 2 episode 14 (The Whole Tooth and...). As part of a mission, secret agent Maxwell Smart (Don Adams) deliberately gets himself arrested and sent to the prison so he can make contact with an inmate there. 1973 - Charley Varrick, When Tom (from Tom's Gun Shop) asks where he is supposed to know Al Dutcher from, Charley (Walter Matthau) replies, "From Joliet. He was doing a 10-year slide for murder two. His girlfriend. Armenian girl." 1988 - Red Heat, a 1988 film which starred Arnold Schwarzenegger and James Belushi 1999 - the Columbia Tristar show Early Edition, season 3 episode 13 (The Last Untouchable). Fictional mobster Antonio Birelli played by Ernest Borgnine is released from the prison.
Since its closure, Joliet Prison has been used much more as a set for various film and television projects.
2005 - Derailed, a 2005 film which starred Clive Owen and Jennifer Aniston 2005-06 - the Fox Network shot the first season of its show Prison Break on location in the old facility. This prison was known as Fox River State Penitentiary on the show 2006 - Let's Go to Prison, a 2006 film which starred Dax Shepard and Will Arnett. 2007 - the Fox Network show Bones, season 2 episode 12 (The man in the cell). The prison where serial killer Howard Epps was held was known as 'Bay View Federal Penitentiary' on the show 2009 - Warehouse 13: Season 1, Episode 9 - A prison, a new warden, and a charismatic preacher inmate who may have an artifact seems related to a string prisoner suicides accompanied by hallucinations. Pete and Myka search for the artifact as an approaching tropical storm accentuates its influence but get caught up in the mayhem. 2011 - Breakout Kings on A&E featured T-Bag from Prison Break escaping from Fox River, again.
Post by Steam McQueen on Jan 14, 2017 1:21:04 GMT -5
- Sounds like the ol' Joliet Correctional Center is being disrespected. Last Monday night two 18 year old girls got inside and one of them accidentally locked herself inside a cell
Two 18-year-old women exploring an abandoned Joliet prison this week had to call firefighters after one of them accidentally locked herself in a jail cell. Firefighters were called on Monday to the Joliet Correctional Center on Collins Street, which has been closed since 2002, to rescue the teen. She was set free after firefighters got into an adjoining cell and used a flathead ax to knock out two large concrete blocks in the shared wall so the trapped teen could climb through to freedom, authorities said.
The two entered the prison through a hole in a fence, authorities said.
Will they ever have tours there? 15 years it's been closed now, tour talk was sounding good 5 years ago but I guess it's not happening. Apparently it's still being seen (exterior only?) in TV shows. Wiki sez, "2015- Briefly featured in Flash season 2 'family of rogues' as 'Iron Heights' prison."
Post by Steam McQueen on Jan 14, 2017 16:32:50 GMT -5
^ There's a lot of urban exploring stuff like that on youtube, people going into abandoned places. But what I thought of when I first saw the story is some youtube/facebook challenge to spend an entire night somewhere illegally. I heard about that here last month when a guy hid in our NHL hockey arena and spent the night roaming around inside, filmed it all, posted it on his own facebook or what have you, and he was arrested a day or two later, lol.
Here's another Tribune pic, this one of a Joliet cell unrelated to the girls, maybe this is similar to the cell she got locked in but looking at the outlines you can see these concrete blocks are substantial in size and they knocked out two of them to get her out. Haha, crazy story. How'd ya like to do your time in here ...
Post by Steam McQueen on May 9, 2017 19:25:57 GMT -5
- It sounds like a bureaucratic mess, different levels of government not co-operating with each other, what a surprise said no one ever. The City would still like to pursue an option of keeping the prison around for tours, but the state has the keys, the state of Illinois, but they won't let the city in to do an assessment. It seems like they want to City to buy it so if it needs to be demolished they get the bill, lol. I dunno, craziness, and look at this poor old prison ... it's getting close to being torn down and having the bricks sold at auction ...
Council members expressed interest in the idea but wariness of what they might get into without being able to evaluate the potential costs of ownership.
“I think the project’s exciting,” Councilman Michael Turk said.
Then he added, “So, the state won’t let us in, but they’ll let us assume the whole institution as is?”
Councilman Terry Morris at one point expressed the absurdity of the situation in which the city, which is interested in ownership, can’t get access to a property that has become notorious for trespassers.
“I don’t want this to sound stupid,” Morris said. “If people can break in, what do we need to do to get in and assess it?”
Post by Steam McQueen on Jun 17, 2017 22:51:13 GMT -5
^ Less than 3 weeks after that post ... another fire. An industrial building within the prison complex, arson, they arrested a 15 year old. Two teen boys were mucking about trespassing and one of them started the fire.
A Memorial Day fire destroyed an industrial building located inside the walls of the old Joliet prison, authorities said. The fire broke out around 7:35 p.m. on Monday just north of another prison building that was destroyed by fire in 2013. No one was injured in the fire, Battalion Chief John Stachelski said.
I was there on Saturday taking pictures with my car and you could still smell the fire smoldering inside. There was a large police presence there. We were talking with some of the officers and they had said whoever set this fire had also set "traps' for firefighters/first responders. They suspect an arsonist. Its sad, not only is someone trying to destroy this awesome facility, but hurt innocent people too. I hope they catch the SOB!
Post by Steam McQueen on Feb 2, 2018 20:22:21 GMT -5
- Joliet will be open to the public this year!
For more than 15 years, the Joliet Prison along Collins Street has sat empty and been the target of late-night vandals and repeat fires that kept the Joliet Fire Department extremely busy and frustrated. But this year the old Joliet Prison is springing back to life, and it promises to be scary as hell.
Evil Intentions, which operates one of the premier haunted houses in the Chicago area, revealed on its website Wednesday that it will be opening a second haunted house at the world-famous limestone prison in Joliet.
Post by Steam McQueen on May 17, 2018 22:55:11 GMT -5
- Great things happening at Joliet! Massive clean-up started last month ...
Between 200 and 300 skilled union tradesmen from Will County, Grundy County and the surrounding Chicago area admitted themselves into prison on Saturday morning for what turned out to be a remarkable event inside the world-famous Old Joliet Prison. These union workers donated their labor.
Joliet is planning a community-wide volunteer cleanup on the weekend of May 19-20. The city and museum are also gearing up to host a huge gala, including live music, in August. Organizers are hoping to bring in a big-name celebrity. The August event will raise money for further restoration and rehabilitation of various prison buildings. The event will coincide with the Evil Intentions Haunted House grand-opening on the east-side of Collins Street, at the old Women's Prison building.
^ A "big-name celebrity." Any wagers on it being Dan
I went out the the prison today in my Car 55. Had my kids with me, so we couldn't go in to help with the clean up, but people 18 and over can volunteer. The Joliet Officer said there was a website to register at. There will be more days for the clean-up AND a big grand opening for the Joliet Prison will be on Sunday, August 26th! Maybe make this a Bluesmobile gathering?!?!
Cool idea! I had a friend hoping I'd caravan out with him for the June gathering but I'm just not able to at that time... August, still a long shot but at least a chance! (Now if only I could get the whole band with us... but it'd never be worth their while for a trip that big LOL!)