NM Prison May Reopen As Museum

Aug 5, 2013

The New Mexico Corrections Department may reopen its closed penitentiary where a bloody prison riot occurred in 1980 as a prison museum.

The closed "Old Main" prison is located on the grounds of the current penitentiary south of Santa Fe.

Corrections Secretary Gregg Marcantal says the idea for the museum arises from strong public interest in tours that were offered during last year's New Mexico centennial celebration.

The Albuquerque Journal reports that the contemplated museum could include tours, a restaurant and an inmate-staffed hobby shop.

Old Main was closed in 1988, eight years after the February 1980 riot in which inmates killed 33 fellow inmates.

Mercantal says any museum would include some former of tribute to the inmates who died and to corrections officers.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.