In the heart of Philadelphia, stands the abandoned Eastern State Penitentiary building.
Founded by Quakers in 1829, this castle-like structure set new standards for prisons across the country with its progressive ideas for rehabilitation.
Recently, a group in charge of preserving this historic structure found a strange plaque discarded in a pile of rubbish. Dusting it off, they found an intriguing inscription: "In the everlasting memory of the inmates of Eastern State Penitentiary who served in World War I".
Even more intriguing is that fact that they are listed not by name, but by their prison numbers. From what they know, convicted felons were prohibited from enlisting or being drafted to fight in the war.
What's going on here? Is this an example of the prison's progressive take on prisoner reform? Or is this a sign of desperate recruiting measures for the "War to end all wars", where even prisoners are being sent into battle?
The History Detectives are on the case to get to the bottom of this mystery.
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- Related Investigation Alcoholics Anonymous Letter Is this letter proof of one man's contribution to this secretive society?
- Also with Tukufu Zuberi Lindbergh-Sikorsky Fabric How do the signatures on this patch of fabric connect Charles Lindbergh to another first in flight?
- Also in Season 2 WWII Landing Craft Did this vessel land tanks on the beaches of France during World War II?
- Also with Tukufu Zuberi Vicksburg Map Could this mysterious map have been at the front lines of one of the most explosive battles of the Civil War?
- Also in this episode Flint Lock Rifle Was this the gun of one of the most infamous bandits operating to undermine the birth of our nation?
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