The Texas Calaboose

“A calaboose is, quite simply, a tiny jail” is the opening comment of this impressive book. William E. Moore, the author developed an interest in these small jails designed to hold overnight law breakers or to hold someone until they can be transferred to the county jail. As is often the case, Calaboose was located among other buildings in town. Moore presents a very interesting  and informative community history.  Few folks  realize that a “tiny jail” could still exist in many places is the state.

The calaboose was a step up from chaining law breakers to trees or to windmills. The calaboose was generally small about 75 square feet in size. Made of materials which were available, the tiny jail was made in varieties of shape, interior, and roofing. Seldom did it have a toilet of a bucket for private use.  The environment was often dirty, miserable, and suicide was frequently used as a means of escape. Some famous characters were placed in calaboose.  



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