8 episodes

McNeil Island in South Puget Sound is the Alcatraz you've never heard of. The now-abandoned prison on McNeil operated for 136 years. Today, the island is home to the Special Commitment Center, which houses Washington state's "sexually violent predators." A collaboration between KNKX and the Washington State Historical Society, Forgotten Prison tells the stories of inmates, guards, and children who grew up on the island. The history of this forgotten place can tell us a lot about how and why we lock people up.

Forgotten Prison KNKX Public Radio

    • News
    • 4.8, 80 Ratings

McNeil Island in South Puget Sound is the Alcatraz you've never heard of. The now-abandoned prison on McNeil operated for 136 years. Today, the island is home to the Special Commitment Center, which houses Washington state's "sexually violent predators." A collaboration between KNKX and the Washington State Historical Society, Forgotten Prison tells the stories of inmates, guards, and children who grew up on the island. The history of this forgotten place can tell us a lot about how and why we lock people up.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
80 Ratings

80 Ratings

JimE P ,

Earthquake on island

I particularly liked the episode that discussed the Nisqually earthquake. I too was on the island that day coincidentally teaching a class about emergency management to staff and guards in the fire station. Being so close to the epicenter I saw ripples of earth rolling toward me at the peak of this. Everyone had to leave class and run into danger to make sure people were safe. It was then difficult for me to get off the island on the ferry (because it is a prison) so that I could check on my family and start working on response efforts of my own as a hazmat responder.
Great job on the series. I really enjoyed it

JaydensAunt ,

Interesting and Informative

I learn something new from each episode. The hosts are charming and lovely to listen to. A very unbiased and informative Podcast on the history of McNeil Island.

percivalmcduck ,

It’s a good show!

I live near the island so I listened to the show to learn a bit about some local history but It is so well done and captivating that I would listen to it even if it didn’t have that local flavor!

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