Prison Life


Front: Relief cross from overlapping fern fronds within a double border with diagonal incising. No hinge line.
Back: Relief anchor with rope; fern fronds in each corner. “Hope” centered; all within double border.
Spine: Three shallow bands with “PRISON/LIFE/IN/ANAMOSA”.
Foredge: Slightly coved with faint page incising (also from colored rock layers).

Very skillful lettering and carving.  Carved at the Anamosa State Penitentiary in Anamosa, Iowa.  Another pair of books, clearly by the same hand, one dated 1892, is in the ASP Museum and shown on their website.  Leslie Koeslch has a small ASP book.  ASP still operates as a maximum security prison.

  • Dateca. 1895
  • MediumSiltstone (?), buff with colored layering.
  • Dimensions (inches)5 15/16 x 4 7/16 x 1 5/8