Replaced in the 1960s by the present-day complex, the old red-brick structure now painted ghostly white sat idle until about three years ago when the upstairs where prison employees once lived was fitted with four cells, a day room, and a few offices for use in the training of security supervisors.
The old building is also utilized as part of the training department’s sergeant retreats and lieutenant command schools. The agency’s emergency response team built an obstacle course outside the building for physical training.
Upshaw said the setting and rich past of the original Eastham facility brings some spice to the supervisor training sessions. The unit’s history, in fact, is told as part of the curriculum.
“It’s interesting and exciting for somebody in our field to go out there,” he said. “It’s an historical marker in itself.”