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This Day in Pop Culture for August 11


1934: The First Prisoners Come To Alcatraz

It was on this day in 1934 that the very first civilian prisoners were sent to the federal prison on Alcatraz Island. Now considered a tourist attraction near San Francisco, Alcatraz was designed to hold the worst of the worst bank robbers, murderers and other offenders including Al Capone, Robert Franklin Stroud (the Birdman) and George “Machine Gun” Kelly to name a few. The first group of 137 prisoners arrived on the island at 9:40 a.m. The staff were highly trained in security but lack rehabilitation skills. During its 29 years of operation, 36 prisoners made 14 escape attempts but no prisoner successfully made it off the island (however there are five listed as “missing and presumed drowned” but no one know for sure). (Image: Wikimedia)


  • 1933: Jerry Falwell (minister)
  • 1946: Marilyn vos Savant (journalist)
  • 1950: Steve Wozniak (co-founder of Apple)
  • 1953: Hulk Hogan (wrestler)
  • 1954: Joe Jackson (singer)
  • 1965: Viola Davis (actress)
  • 1967: Joe Rogan (actor)
  • 1983: Chris Hemsworth (actor)

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Jeffrey Totey View All

I write about pop culture, arts and entertainment in the greater Seattle area.

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