Alcatraz is a History Documentary programme.

Image for the History Documentary programme "Alcatraz"

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Alcatraz was regarded as one of the most daunting prisons in the world. The maximum security 'Rock' was infamous for being the toughest US prison and for housing criminals such as Al Capone and the Bird Man. This island had been a place of confinement since the Civil War, became a military prison in 1909 and was finally taken on as a Federal prison in the 1930s, just as the US was in the grip of a wave of crime and at the mercy of unstoppable criminals.

For over 29 years, Alcatraz saw 16,000 men live a regimented life: rising at 6.30am, bedding down at 9.30pm, showering twice a week and allowed only 20 minutes for each meal time. The men were held in tiny cells and the isolation and routine - not to mention the torture of the splendid view of San Francisco which the island afforded the inmates - drove many to try to escape. One of the most violent escape attempts is known as the 'Battle Of Alcatraz'. Bernard Paul Coy, a Kentucky bank robber, formulated a plan which culminated in a bloody shootout. Three inmates were shot dead and 14 guards and one further inmate were injured. Needless to say, Coy and his accomplices never made it out of the 'Rock'

Genre: History Documentary

Running Time: 60 minutes (approx)