South Carolina Department of Archives and History
National Register Properties in South Carolina

Oconee County Cage, Oconee County (Church St., Walhalla)
S1081773700901 S1081773700902 S1081773700903 S1081773700904 S1081773700905
Cage Wheel Detail Rear Axle Rear Doors Interior with
Bed Racks

(Jail on Wheels) The Oconee County Cage was one of several used in the early twentieth century as quarters for chain gang members at work sites. The cage is a small, metal cage on a wheeled chassis constructed ca. 1900. The cage was pulled by draft animals who were hitched to a metal tongue which projects from the front axle of the chassis. The cage is approximately fourteen feet long, eight feet wide, and seven feet high. The front end, the floor, and the roof are of solid sheet metal on a riveted frame. The sides of the cage are enclosed by metal bars and strips in an open grid. The rear of the cage has a hinged metal door allowing egress. The cage has twelve metal bunks inside, arranged in three tiers on each side. The bunks have metal frames carrying a mesh of metal strips, which supported the prisoners pallets. A small metal barrel in the center of the floor allowed for a fire. It is the most intact object of its type identified in the state. Listed in the National Register November 14, 1982.

View the complete text of the nomination form for this National Register property. In addition, the Historic Resources of the Oconee County Penal System includes historical background information for this and other related National Register properties.

Most National Register properties are privately owned and are not open to the public. The privacy of owners should be respected. Not all properties retain the same integrity as when originally documented and listed in the National Register due to changes and modifications over time.

Images and texts on these pages are intended for research or educational use. Please read our statement on use and reproduction for further information on how to obtain a photocopy or how to cite an item.

Images provided by the South Carolina Department of Archives and History.