The Allegan County Old Jail Museum
The building was built in 1906 to house the Sheriff and his family and the Allegan County jail.
The front of the building is a two story residence, which the Allegan County Historical Society has furnished to reflect the life style of the early 1900’s. There are two parlors, a formal dining room, bedroom, kitchen, all circa 1900, plus a Pioneer keeping room.
The Museum has well over 10,000 artifacts that have been donated by people in this County, from a pencil collection, to the first piano in Allegan that came here by ox cart in the 1800’s from Buffalo NY. One room in the residence has been set aside for rotating displays.
The rear of the building contains three stories of cells. We have left some of the cells as they were when the Museum was first established, showing you what jail conditions were like in Allegan in the 1960s. We have put up displays in other cells that show a 1900 barbershop, attorney’s office, dentist’s office, and school room. We have a large toy and doll collection. In the Pritchard Room we have assembled many items from the Civil War, Spanish American War, and First and Second World Wars. We are privileged to have some of General Benjamin Pritchard’s personal property. He was a resident of Allegan and captured Jefferson Davis at the cessation of hostilities in the Civil War.
We give guided tours where we explain life in the 1900’s, and tell some touching and interesting stories about various items in our collection. Museum hours are Friday and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. We welcome special tours, during daytime or evenings and on any day, of small or large groups, by just calling the Museum at (269) 673-8292 to make arrangements.