Please email your comments & questions to geovisual at Thank you.

Peace Monuments
Related to Former Prisons

Right click image to enlarge.
Date? - St. George's Castle, Elmina (Ghana). Slave fort erected by the Portuguese in 1482. Captured by the Dutch in 1637 and by the British in the early 1870's. Now a popular historical site. Extensively restored by the Ghanaian government in the 1990's.
1920's - Cape Coast Castle Museum, Victoria Road, Cape Coast, (Ghana). "Built for the trade in timber and gold and later used in the trans-Atlantic slave trade." Swedish in 1653, then Danish, then British in 1664. Became the seat of the colonial Government of the British Gold Coast in 1844. First restored in the 1920's by the British Public Works Department." The Ghanaian government restored it again in 1957. Until 1993, part was used as a prison.
Date? - Maison des Esclaves / House of Slaves, Île de Gorée (Senegal). Frequently visited UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Date? - Slavery Freedom Monument, Île de Gorée (Senegal).
N/A - Bunce Island Slave Castle, Sierra Leone River (Sierra Leone). "Where Sierra Leonean slaves skilled in rice cultivation destined for North America were held. Today little more than an abandoned set of ruins, crumbling stones clutched by ivy roots and overgrown weeds on a 500-metre strip of land in the muddy waters of the river. Opala has worked for 30 years on the links between descendants of slaves and their West African origins. 'Sierra Leone is the most frequent result for DNA tests in the U.S.,' he said."
N/A - Bruin's Slave Jail, 1707 Duke Street, Alexandria, Virginia (USA). "Joseph Bruin used this brick Federal-style dwellling as his holding facility, or 'slave jail' for slaves awaiting sale to individuals and other dealers. Bruin purchased the large house in 1844. Harriet Beecher Stowe, in The Key to Uncle Tom's Cabin (1854), described how she employed her knowlege of Bruin's slave jail as background for her explosive 1852 novel, Uncle Tom's Cabin. Currently used as business offices, and is not open to the public."
August 1943 - Manzanar Cemetery, US Highway 395, 9 miles north of Lone Pine, California (USA). "Only 15 of the 150 people who died at Manzanar were buried here, while most of the others were cremated. Today, only 6 graves remain because the rest of the bodies have been moved closer to their families. People still come and leave tokes of remembrance though, like the paper chains decorating the monument and the doll lying on the bottom row. The characters on this monument can be translated as 'soul consoling tower.' On the back, it reads 'August 1943, erected by the Manzanar Japanese.'"
1958 - Konzentrationslager Buchenwald / Buchenwald Concentration Camp, Ettersberg / Etter Mountain, near Weimar, Thuringia (Germany). Stone memorial constructed in 1958.
1965 - Konzentrationslager Dachau / Dachau Concentration Camp, Dachau, Bavaria (Germany). First Nazi concentration camp. Now Gedenkstatte Dachau / Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site.
April 30, 1967 - Protestant Church of Reconcilliation, Dachau (Germany). Designed by Helmut Striffler. Dedicated by the Rev. Martin Niemöller [1892-1984], one of the most famous prisoners in Dachau and the first sent to Sachsenhausen after he was convicted of treason for preaching against the Nazi government.

July 1969 - Mainanek Memorial, Lublin (Poland). Least changed of the Nazi extermination camps. "On the 25th anniversary of its liberation [by the Russian army], a large monument designed by Victor Tolkin was constructed at the site. It consists of two parts: a large gate monument at the camp's entrance (left image) & a large mausoleum (right image) holding ashes of the victims at its opposite end."
1972 - Das Deutsche Haus (Bando), Naruto, Tokushima (Japan). "The site of a World War I POW camp for German soldiers. Stone bridges & cenotaph built by the prisoners are on display, along with documents about life during those times. The German prisoners were free to communicate with the local people, and much German culture remains in the area to this day. The present-day German House was built in 1993."

1972 - Manzanar National Historic Site, National Park Service (NPS), US Highway 395, 9 miles north of Lone Pine, California (USA). "The best-preserved of the ten camps where Japanese-Americans were interred during WW-II." Named California Historical Landmark #850 in 1972. Historical marker placed at the sentry post on April 14, 1973. National Historic Site established March 3, 1992. Interpretive center (right image) is in former high school constructed by internees in 1944. Watchtower replica (left image) built in 2005.

May 3, 1975 - Mauthausen-Gusen Concentration Camp, Mauthausen & Gusen (Austria). Center of a group of SS slave labor camps. Original inmates were largely Germans who had resisted the Nazi regime, notable communists, socialists, and religious dissenters. Thirty years after liberation Chancellor Bruno Kreisky officially opened the Mauthausen Museum. Many of the sub-camps near Gusen are now covered by residential areas built after the war. In February 2009 the memorial was vandalized by persons unknown, who defaced a section of the wall with anti-Islamic graffiti. Right image shows a 1978 East German postage stamp.
Date? - Richmond Castle, Richmond, North Yorkshire (England). The castle's Exhibition Centre includes a virtual reality touch-screen guide about the imprisonment in the castle of the concientious objectors in the First World War. Concientious objectors, conscripted into the army and sent to join the Non Combatant Corps at Richmond, were put in the cells as a result of their refusal to obey orders." One of 13 sites on the MAW Peace Map of the British Isles as of January 2009.

Date? - Herinneringscentrum Kamp Westerbork / Memorial Center Camp Westerbork, Westerbork, Middenveld, Drenthe (Netherlands). Westerbork functioned during the WW-II to assemble Roma and Dutch Jews for transport to other Nazi concentration camps. Now a museum. Upper image shows Rails Monument, part of a former railroad track which was used during WW-II to transport people to and from the camp, including Anne Frank. Lower image shows the Appelplatz Memorial, made of a small rectangular stone for each person who had stayed at Westerbork and later died in a Nazi camp. The stones have a silver flame insignia for Roma and Sinti and a Star of David for Jewish victims. (Appelplatz means square used for roll call.)
1992 - Steinwache Memorial Centre, Dortmund (Germany). Prison built in 1906 and operated by the Gestapo after 1933.
1993 - Robben Island Museum, Robben Island (South Africa). "The notorious prison on the Island was also used to exile political prisoners of the apartheid era between the 1960s and 1991. Today it is a World Heritage Site and museum, a poignant reminder to the newly democratic South Africa of the price some paid for freedom."
1996 - Gulag Museum at Perm-36, Perm (Russia). "Conservation began after the collapse of the Communist Party in 1992. It is now home to the Gulag Museum, a joint project of the Memorial Society (founded by Andrei Sakharov [1921-1989]) and the Perm regional administration. Dedicated to promoting democratic values and civil consciousness in contemporary Russian society through the preservation of the last Soviet political camp as a vivid reminder of repression, and an important historical and cultural monument."
1997 - Parque por la Paz Villa Grimaldi, Avenida Jose Arrieta, Penalolen, Santiago de Chile (Chile). Villa Grimaldi was a complex of buildings used for the interrogation and torture of political prisoners by DINA, the Chilean secret police, during the government of Augusto Pinochet [1915-2006].
1999 - Gordon Hirabayashi Recreation Site, Sky Island Scenic Byway, Coronado National Forest (Arizona). "The site was built in 1937 as a Federal prison camp; these prisoners built the highway. During WWII, some prisoners were conscientious objectors; some were Japanese Americans protesting the relocation. Gordon Hirabayashi refused a Relocation order and served his sentence here after the Supreme Court upheld his conviction."
December 10, 1999 - Green Island Monument, Green Island (Taiwan). "Memorializes individuals who Taiwan's former rulers imprisoned there for their political beliefs during what is known as the White Terror period." Dedicated by president Lee Teng-Hui who apologized to the vicitims of Green Island. Part of the eventual Green Island Memorial Park was opened at the same time. Green Island is 33 km off Taiwan's southeast coast.
2001 - Minidoka Internment National Historic Site, National Park Service (NPS), Hagerman, Idaho (USA). Click here for the 2006 General Management Plan.

December 10, 2002 - Green Island Human Rights Memorial Park, Green Island, Tai-Tung County (Taiwan). Site of two prisons which held political prisoners. Educational center opened in 2008. Green Island is 33 km off Taiwan's southeast coast.
2007 - Taipei Human Rights Culture Park, Jingmei, near Taipei (Taiwan). "For research on human rights in Taiwan & Asia." Site of former Jingmei Military Detention Centre. Dedicated by president Chen Shui-bian on Human Rights Day. Jingmei is in southwest suburban Taipei.

December 5, 2008 - Tule Lake Segregation Center, Tule Lake, California (USA). Part of the World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument as designated by President George W. Bush just in time for the 67th anniversary of Pearl Harbor on December 7, 2008. (The national monument encompasses 9 sites in 3 states totaling 6,310 acres (2,550 ha)."As part of a nationwide initiative to conserve Japanese American internment camp sites, The Conservation Fund has worked closely with the National Park Service (NPS), Japanese American Citizens League, Tule Lake Committee and other local partners to conserve land at the site of three former camps – Minidoka National Historic Site in Idaho, Topaz in Utah and now the Tule Lake site in Northern California. To date, the Fund has protected over 230 acres of historic lands at Minidoka and Topaz." Upper image is circa 1942.

In Progress - Amache Japanese Internment Camp, Granada, Colorado (USA). Right image by EWL.
In Progress - Topaz Museum, c/o Great Basin Museum, Delta, Utah (USA). "In 1991, a local Delta family donated half of an original Topaz recreation hall, which had been used as a storage shed for some 50 years. An ad hoc committee, now known as the Topaz Museum Board, was formed to decide how to restore the building to its original wartime condition."
Future - "Global Peace Center," Alcatraz Island, San Francisco Bay, California (USA). Reuse of former prison proposed by Native Americans.

Please email your comments & questions to geovisual at Thank you.

Return to Peace Monuments main page.