Schools get access to Victorian jail archive

Written by: HTU | Published:

Records of more than 4,000 prisoners who served sentences at Inveraray Jail between 1820 and 1890 have been made into a free primary education resource.

Records of more than 4,000 prisoners who served sentences at Inveraray Jail between 1820 and 1890 have been made into a free primary education resource.



Ictopus, a free web-based ICT support service for primary education, has prepared the resource which uses the jail records to educate pupils on the social history of the Victorian period.



The project started following an Ictopus group trip to Inveraray Jail in Argyll, Scotland, in June this year. The consultants were impressed with the huge educational potential available at the museum.



Inveraray Jail did have an electronic copy of the records, however Ictopus spent around six weeks reworking the entire database to make it child-friendly. This included censoring some of the original terms used and devising a glossary for children to interpret the 19th century legal terminology.



Project activities include the use of Google Maps & Google Earth and searching through the database to find stories, patterns, trends and changes that took place across Victorian society. It also applies activities such as writing a news article based on real-life court cases, the re-enactment of court scenes and searching through transportation records which pupils can link to those recorded in Queensland, Australia.



For more on Inveraray Jail, visit www.inverarayjail.co.uk and for more on ictopus, see www.ictopus.org.uk


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