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Prisoners, Female (U.S.)

Historically, female prisoners have played a somewhat invisible role in the criminal justice system. During the 19th century in the United States, it was highly unlikely for a judge to sentence a woman to prison, unless she was a habitual offender. Prison was considered the end of the road. Until the 1870s, women were housed in the same facilities as men and were often imprisoned for public order offenses. Reform slowly occurred, and by 1873, the first female prison was established in Indiana. As new women's reformatories were built around the country, domestic values flourished. Women could decorate their rooms and learned feminine vocations. After World War II, values did not change, and female offenders were provided with traditionally feminine occupational and vocational trade skills. ...

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