"the fore-fathers of Boston had built the first prison-house, somewhere in the vicinity of Cornhill"

Boston Gaol, the first institution of its kind for the Massachusetts Bay colony, was established in 1635. It was located in the square at the center of Cornhill (present-day Washington Street), Treamont (Tremont) Street, Prison Lane (Court Street) and School Street, and played host to Quakers, witches and the usual assortment of criminals until its closure in 1822. 

Old Town Gaol, Market-Place, Boston
Public DomainOld Town Gaol, Market-Place, Boston - Credit: William Brand