A set of extremely macabre 19th Century Leg Irons or Shackles used to transport prisoners. They fasten using the very rare hook & eye clamp system, designed to be used without locks and are believed to originate from Lincoln Castle. Lincoln Castle’s Victorian Prison was designed for the ‘separate system’, an isolating regime that kept prisoners apart from the corrupting influence of their fellow prisoners. The Victorians believed that this would encourage them to reflect and repent, and more importantly to reform.
Men, women and children as young as eight were held here from 1848 to 1878 for crimes ranging from stealing a waistcoat and Bible, to highway robbery and murder. During this time seven murderers were hanged at the castle and their bodies buried in Lucy Tower where their graves can still be seen today.