Manuscripts and Archives

  • Cumberland County Archives
    Cumberland County’s Archives holds several series of documents concerning Eastern State Penitentiary up to the year 1887. These documents include annual bills from Eastern State for maintenance costs of prisoners convicted in Cumberland County and discharge certificates for those inmates. To see lists of holdings and some images, go to Cumberland County's Listings Page and search all archives for the word “penitentiary.”
  • The Pennsylvania State Archives
    Click here for information specifically about prison records at the State Archives. The Pennsylvania State Archives has the most comprehensive collection of inmate records from Eastern State Penitentiary. Click here for the Genealogical Research at the Pennsylvania State Archives web page.
  • Repositories of Primary Sources
    This website lists many repositories in the United States and Canada that may be able to assist you with your search—a university, historical society, or archives not listed on our website may have the information you need!