D.C. Department of Corrections Facility at Lorton Prison Complex Time Line

►President T. Roosevelt approves planto establish DCWorkhouse and Reformatoryrose 




                                                   President Theodore Roosevelt

Spring 1909
►60th Congress finds two sites of 1000 acres each in southwest Fairfax County Fall 1909
►1150 acres of land acquired for $28,650 for DC Workhouse 4/1/1910
►First inmates arrive by barge at Occoquan wharf from DCWorkhouse Farm Fields              Workhouse Farm Fieldswharf 6/1/1910
►First temporary buildings constructed at present DC workhouse site 10/1910
►Brickyard establishedBrickyard and Kilnbrickk 

              Last Remaining Kiln in Occoquan Regional Parkkiln


Late 1910
►Women’s Workhouse annex established across the road from men’s workhouseWomen’s “Workhouse Annexwomen 1912
►Permanent wooden buildings at Workhouse site completed and occupied 1914
►Laurel Hill House first used as residence for correctional complex superintendent 1915
►Wooden buildings at Reformatory complete and occupied 11/1916
►Suffragists incarcerated in Women’s WorkhouseSuffragist                                                                                     Lucy Burns

Lucy Burns

Photographs from the Records of the National Woman’s Party / Harris & Ewing, Washington, D.C. – Library of Congress

►Permanent brick buildings erected at Workhouse and                                 ReformatoryWorkhouse Dormitorydorm 

                                                Reformatory Mess Hall






                                                            Reformatory Hospital






              Reformatory Quadquad



►Railroad built from wharf to Workhouse and Reformatory 1925
►Railroad extended to RF&P interchange at Lorton 1927
►Maximum security facility commenced building 1931
►First ‘white collar’ criminals incarcerated 6/1931
►Maximum security facility (Penitentiary) openedPenitentiary                                                              Guard Towertower 



                                                            Penitentiary Cells



►Barge transportation between DC and Occoquan ended 7/1941
►DC Department of Corrections created to supervise DC jail and Lorton complex 1946
►Farm 95% mechanized 1950
►Reformatory fence/lights installed 1950-1952
►Anti-aircraft missile site built, manned by U.S. Army ReserveNike Hercules Integrated Fire ControlArmy Air Defense Commandmissle 1953
►Lorton Jazz festival begins 1954
►Chapel designed and built by inmates                                     Chapelchapel 1957
►First corrections officer killed in the line of duty 1958
►Youth Center opens 1960
►First major riot occurs 1963
►Nuclear-Attach Response/Civil Defense HQ opens in basement of Youth Center 1964
►Eastern District Federal Court decriminalizes alcohol offenses  (Easter decision)                         Workhouse 1964alco 1964
►Brickyard and cannery closed►Men’s and Women’s Workhouses closed.  Reopens as an alcohol treatment center 1966
►Anti-Vietnam war protesters incarcerated in Workhouse (included Normal Mailer and Noam Chomsky) 10/1967
►First attempt to remove prison from Lorton 1970
►Missile base closes 1974
►Railroad ceases operation 1977
►Railroad abandoned 1980
►New minimum security facility established at former missile site 1985
►Major riots and fire at Workhouse and Reformatoryriots 7/1986
►Farming and animal husbandry operations cease.c. 1955farmin 1995
►Super maximum security facility started 1995
►Federal trustees take over responsibility for prison complex 1995
►Dairy farm closes                           Prison cows before auctiondairy 6/1998
►Congress moves to turn over prison complex to Fairfax County 1998
►Fairfax Water Authority assumes control of former women’s prison site 1998
►Last prisoner leaves 12/2001
►GSA accepts Fairfax County’s offer to purchase the DC Correctional Facility at Lorton for $4,235,000 April 17, 2002
►Fairfax County Park Authority leases workhouse site to Lorton Arts Foundation 2002
►Lorton Arts Center opens                      Museum in Building 9museum 

                                Workhouse Arts Center at Twilighttwilight


►Workhouse Prison Museum established           First Workhouse Prison Museumpris Late 2008
                                    Waiting for the fireworks, July 5, 2014fire 


►Lorton Arts Foundation changes name to Workhouse Arts Foundation