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History of Corrections

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Criminal Justice: History of Corrections
Historical Foundation of American Correction System
It was believed that the American correction system originated during the colonial years, between the years 1620 and 1776. Due to the fact that America was under the England rule, the country had to adopt the practices and laws of its colonizer (Clear, et. al. 2012, p. 15). During this time, death, corporal punishment, banishment, and pillory were the penalties generally observed. There was is still no concept of jails or correction houses until William Penn arrived in 1682. Penn introduced the concept of Great Law, which “emphasized hard labor in a house of correction as punishment for most crimes” (Clear, et. al. 2012, p. 15). In a nutshell, jails during the colonial era were primarily used to house people who could not pay their debts or those waiting for court action.
Another development in correction system happened in 1790s to 1860s, thus, the introduction of penitentiary system. This system assumes that “criminal behavior was part of human nature to a belief that offenders could be reformed” (Clear, et. al. 2012, p. 15). People who were offended were punished according to the severity of their crime. They were usually isolated and asked to render labor.
Reformatory period of American correction system happened in 1860s to 1890s, where parole, rehabilitative programs, and indeterminate sentences were introduced. There was also separate treatme…

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