Alcatraz’s reputation as a tough as nails prison was a Hollywood myth. Many inmates requested transfer there on account of its good food and one man per cell policy.

10 Things You May Not Know About Alcatraz

1. Al Capone played banjo in the inmate band.

The notorious gangster and mob boss was among the first prisoners to occupy the new Alcatraz federal prison in August 1934. Capone had bribed guards to receive preferential treatment while serving his tax-evasion sentence in Atlanta, but that changed after his transfer to the island prison. The conditions broke Capone. “It looks like Alcatraz has got me licked,” he reportedly told his warden. In fact, Convict No. 85 became so cooperative that he was permitted to play banjo in the Alcatraz prison band, the Rock Islanders, which gave regular Sunday concerts for other inmates.

2. There were no confirmed prisoner escapes from Alcatraz.

A total of 36 inmates put the supposedly “escape-pro… Continue Reading