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Old Albemarle County Jail

409 East High Street, Charlottesville, VA 22902


In 1849 the future Colonel John S. Mosby entered the University of Virginia taking classical studies and joining a literary society. He studied Latin, Greek, and literature, all of which he enjoyed,. On March 29, 1853 Mosby shot George R. Turpin, a medical student at the university and reported bully. The 19-year-old Mosby then went home to await his fate. He was arrested and arraigned on two charges: unlawful shooting (a misdemeanor with a maximum sentence of one year in jail and a $500 fine) and malicious shooting (a felony with a maximum sentence of 10 years in the penitentiary). Mosby was convicted of the lesser offense but received the maximum sentence. While serving his time in the Albemarle County Jail, Mosby passed his time by studying law. Mosby was not the healthiest of people and as winter set in he became ill. On December 23, 1853, the Governor of Virginia pardoned Mosby as a Christmas present. After studying for months in William J. Robertson's law office, his former prosecuter, Mosby was admitted to the Bar.

Mosby was confined to the stone portion of the old jail. 23 years after his incarceration, the entire jail was moved across the street to where it is now.




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Meeting Facilities

Facility Info
  • Exhibits Space
  • Exhibits 1