Lehigh University
The Vault at PfaffsAn Archive of Art and Literature by the Bohemians of Antebellum New York
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Text for Page 220 [09-08-1860]

              203
             The Cells and their Occupants.
Washington, Jackson and Lafayette.     One side
is railed off, behind which is a desk and
official appurtnances, among them a cupboard or
case containing pistols, sling-shots, murderous-
looking knives and dirks, skeleton keys and other
articles, taken from prisoners, some of them
with labels indicating their once proprietors.  Doors
to the right and left led to the cells or the quar-
ters of the police.    At the invitation of the presi-
ding serjeant, a good-looking, intelligent man we
descended to the former, under charge of an offi-
cial.        Down a staircase, across a yard, we
are piloted to ten or twelve cells with gratings for
doors, whitewashed walls, no furniture, and
wooden floors, slightly elevated at one end.  The
passage between them is lit with gas.           There
was a drunken Irishman with his face hideous-
ly cut and bleeding in one, three young fellows
lying fast asleep in a second, two prostitutes
in a third.          One of the women came to the 
grating and talked with wretched bravado and
discordant laughter, calling Boweryem a �cock-
roach� at which he laughed, too, more shrilly than
pleasantly.      The Irishman was confusedly re-
monstrative.     We were found here by Serjeant
Williams, my Wednesday�s acquaintance.       A
broad, sturdy, resolute looking man, in uniform.               
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