Wardens prior to 1880 see Founding
to 1883 - Warden J. P. Ames.
first official warden named. Under him, some semblance of a workable
prison system began to take shape. This period witnessed the
beginning of use of "Magnetic Telegraph", the teletype of
its day... in spreading notice of escapes.
1881 Legislature authorized an appropriation of $219,000 for
erection of a jute mill, machinery equipment, etc. The latter was
imported from Leeds, England; raw jute came from India. The famed
mill was the scene of harsh "Task" system for many years.
Operations frequently went on a 24 hour schedule. Products: burlap
cloth, grain and bean sacks were shipped everywhere.
to 1888 -Warden Paul Shirley.
his tenure, famed "Black Bart", notorious Wells-Fargo
Stage bandit arrived at San Quentin.
1883 prison population was 1,220...about 60% Chinese, Mexicans,
Indians and other "Foreigners."
to 1891 - Warden John McComb.
supervised a motley parade of femininity, representing the "Gun
Moll" types of the era, during San Quentin's adolescent years.
to 1899 Warden W. E. Hale.
riots and escape attempts occurred during his administration. First
water mains were laid, and fire protection established.
to 1903 Warden M. G. Aguirre.
introduced the straight-jacket for punishment, but recommended
abolition of coal-oil lamps, in cells, and the old-style arc-lights
in the jute mill, replacing them with modern incandescent electric globes.
Quentin's population, June 30, 1903, was 1529, Increasing demand for
grain bags required expansion of warehouse space.
to 1906 Warden T. G. Tompkins.
guard towers were erected at strategic locations on the Reservation
due to rapidly increasing population.
style guns were replaced by new type weapons and ammunition.
to 1907 John C. Edgar.
the great earthquake, in 1906, all prisoners then held in San
Francisco jails were bound and shackled, loaded upon the S.S.
Caroline and ferried across the bay to San Quentin.
to 1913 Warden John E. Hoyle.
new mess hall and kitchen were built during his administration.
Construction began on new south block, housing 2000 men.
to 1925 - Warden James A. Johnston.
buildings were completed; guards uniforms changed from blue to
khaki; prisoners clothes from stripes to grey; first road camps were
established. Johnston later became warden of Alcatraz.
to 1927 - Warden Frank Smith.
block was completed; "Crazy Alley was abolished; new female
department was started as well as other improvements.
to 1936 - Warden James B. Holohan.
walls, built a new arsenal, guard towers, fire department building,
visitors' room, laundry, etc., were completed.
to 1940 - Warden Court Smith.
an administrator at Folsom Prison before being appointed warden at
to 1951 - Warden Clinton T. Duffy.