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The Crown Prison Vita Björn

Vita Björn was used as a jail and prison for almost 200 years. Today the building houses a prison museum where the visitor can learn more about the development of the prison service from the late 1700s up until the 1950s; from a time when shackles and irons where part and parcel of prison life to an increasingly humane approach.

When Vita Björn closed its doors in 1975, it marked the end of a tradition stretching back hundreds of years. The Kastelholm area has seen not only primitive prison chests and castle dungeons, but a jail on the opposite side of the inlet as well.

Vita Björn is the oldest building of its kind in Finland. After the prison was closed the building was restored and reopened in 1985 as the first public prison museum in Finland. The restoration of the building was carried out by the Kastelholm labour colony which ceased to exist some time later.