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Whips to Walls

Naval Discipline from Flogging to Progressive-Era Reform at Portsmouth Prison
by Rodney K. Watterson
Naval Inst Pr

List price $34.95 / Sale price $6.99
Your net price $3.49
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Pub Date: 2014
Format: Paperback with bw illus.
Pages: 245 pp.
Size: 6.00 x 9.25 inches

ISBN: 9781612514451
TB Code: 1904351
Availability: 241 in stock

When flogging was abolished in 1850, the U.S. Navy established a prison system that culminated with the opening of Portsmouth Naval Prison in 1908. It soon became the focal point for reformers who sought to change outdated means of punishment. Led by Thomas Mott Osborne, cell doors remained opened, inmates governed themselves, and thousands of rehabilitated prisoners returned to service. Championed by Josephus Daniels and Franklin Roosevelt, Osborne’s reforms proceeded positively until Vice Adm. William Sims and others became convinced that too many troublemakers returned to active duty. An investigation of conditions at Portsmouth prison resulted in charges of gross mismanagement and rampant homosexual activity. Although exonerated, Osborne resigned and initiatives were quickly reversed as the Navy returned to a harsher system.