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The “old Capitol” prison.

Colonel N. T. Colby.
That which is commonly known as the Old Capitol Prison, and which figured so conspicuously in the history of the late war, consisted, really, of two separate and distinct edifices, locally known by the names of the Old Capitol and the Carroll buildings, and were situated, the first, on the corner of Pennsylvania avenue and East First street, and the other on the corner of Maryland avenue and East First--a block apart, and both facing the Capitol building and East Capitol Park. The “Old Capitol” was so named from having been the temporary meeting-place of both Houses, I believe, after the destruction of the Capitol buildings by the English under Ross, in the war of 1812, and the other from its having been the property of the Carroll family, descendants of him of Carrollton-vide the signatures to the Declaration of Independence. Of course the use to which they were devoted in the late war was far enough from that for which they were originally constructed, and, in fact, in their earlier and better days, they earned, historically, a higher reputation than many more pretentious Washington edifices. The Old Capitol, especially, after its abandonment by Congress, was occupied as a fashionable boarding-house, and was largely patronized by the “creme de lac creme” of the Southern dwellers in Washington. The great original nullifier, Calhoun, boarded here, and from out its doors went the gallant, but ill-fated, Commodore Decatur, the morning he met his enemy, Barron, at Bladensburg, in the duel that cost him his life. No brick walls, old or new, in the capital, have shut in stranger episodes and vicissitudes of life than these, and, I doubt not, each of

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