Vintage Oakalla Prison Farm Wagon
The wagon is now back in place outside the front of The Farm Museum on King St.
This wagon, pulled by a team of 4 horses, was used for transporting very heavy loads around the farm. Note the really heavy duty leave springs, extremely unusual for this type of wagon.
The attached photo shows the Oakalla horse team and wagon at the PNE
After the closure of Oakalla prison the Horses went to Fort Steele and the BC Farm Museum received the Wagon.
From the time of Oakalla’s opening, in 1912, to its closure seventy-nine years later, the Lower Mainland Regional Correctional Centre (as it was renamed in 1970) served three main functions. First, it was a provincial jail for men and women serving sentences of less than two years; second, it was a remand centre for those awaiting trial on serious charges or appealing federal convictions; and third, up until the final hanging of Leo Mantha in 1949, Oakalla carried out all death sentences in the province.
From 1919 until the abolition of the death penalty in 1959, 44 prisoners were executed by hanging on the Oakalla site.