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THE HISTORY OF THE ARENA DISTRICT PORTION OF DOWNTOWN COLUMBUS, OHIO

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The Ohio Penitentiary aka the Ohio State Penitentiary was located in downtown Columbus, Ohio from 1834 to 1984. At the peak of it's popularity as the place to go to lock up a prison inmate next to the Downtown Columbus area in 1955, 5,235 of the coldest and roughest prison inmates lived there. General John H. Morgan, George "Bugs" Moran, O. Henry, Chester Himes, and Sam Sheppard (The inspiration for the television and film series the Fugitive) lived there. General John H. Morgan and six of his officers successfully escaped from the Ohio State Penitentiary and returned to Kentucky where former Confederate State of America politicians not yet arrested for Civil War era treason hid him from the police. That's the only prison escape that I know about. Now let's talk about fires that broke out at the facility. 322 Inmates died and 150 was Inmates injured when a fire broke out in the first version of the Ohio State Penitentiary on April 21, 1930. The cause of the fire was took place in the planned expansion to the first version of the Ohio State Penitentiary which nearly took the whole facility down. The expansion eventually was completed, with possible cost overruns and possible lawsuits about the death and injuries of Inmates due to the fire. However, the 1930's wasn't the straw the broke the camel's back. It was the 1980's rather than the 1930's that ended it forever. Oh yeah, I almost forgot to mention prison riots. There were two riots where the Prison Warden of the first version of the Ohio State Penitentiary lost control of the prison. October 31, 1952 was the date for the Halloween Riots which left one Inmate dead and four Inmates injured. A second prison riot in 1968 left five Inmates dead, five Inmates injured and seven Prison Guards injured. The Ohio State Penitentiary was closed down in 1984 and was an abandoned former prison ruins until the day it was torn down in 1998. A brand new supermax prison also named the Ohio State Penitentiary was opened in 1998 in Youngstown, Ohio. While the first Ohio State Penitentiary housed 5,235 inmates when it's at full capacity, the new Ohio State Penitentiary in Youngstown, Ohio only housed 502 inmates. Both versions had a death row, but the second version ended it's Death Row Inmate housing in 2012.
Meanwhile, at the same exact area where the first version of the Ohio State Penitentiary existed, ground breaking began for Nationwide Arena. Nationwide Arena, which is where the National Hockey League expansion team the Columbus Blue Jackets is now located, began on May 26, 1998 with construction ended on September 9, 2000. The Columbus Blue Jackets started playing hockey games at Nationwide Arena on October 7, 2000. 2013 to 2014 saw completion for the final stage of the Arena District in Downtown Columbus, Ohio. The same exact area where the first version of the Ohio State Penitentiary once existed is now the Arena District of Downtown Columbus. Anyway, the Columbus Blue Jackets qualified for Stanley Cup playoffs, but didn't win the championship. The 2016 to 2017 season for the Columbus Blue Jackets has them occupying second place for the Metropolitan Division of the National Hockey League which could give them a second chance to enter the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The Gentle Reader and I will find out if such a thing is going to happen.
Current Location:
Columbus, Ohio
Current Mood:
Either locked up forever or playing hockey. I can't decide which.
Current Music:
Jailhouse Rock by Elvis Presley
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