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Pottawattamie County Squirrel Cage Jail and Museum

226 Pearl St, Council Bluffs, IA 51503
+1 712-323-2509
Review Highlights
Unique, 3 story rotating jail from 1885

This one of a kind rotating jail, built in 1885, is an engineering feat. The volunteers are so... read more

Reviewed 23 December 2017
Lee's Summit, Missouri
Must visit

Excellent tour guide, Doug, a volunteer. Unique, three story, rotating jail built in 1885 and... read more

Reviewed 11 December 2017
LaNette H
Kansas City, Missouri
via mobile
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  • Excellent47%
  • Very good34%
  • Average15%
  • Poor3%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
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Hours Today: Closed
226 Pearl St, Council Bluffs, IA 51503
+1 712-323-2509
Write a ReviewReviews (102)
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1 - 10 of 102 reviews

Reviewed 23 December 2017

This one of a kind rotating jail, built in 1885, is an engineering feat. The volunteers are so knowledgeable and the tour was interesting, entertaining, and informative. I thought we would "run through" but we spent 90 minutes there reading the newspaper articles about inmates...More

Thank EnjoyedVisit
Reviewed 11 December 2017 via mobile

Excellent tour guide, Doug, a volunteer. Unique, three story, rotating jail built in 1885 and closed in 1969. Impressive how they figured out to build that in the 1800s. Take the tour, read the articles on display, and learn something!

Thank LaNette H
Reviewed 18 September 2017

This 1885 3-story rotating jail remains today as a one-of-a-kind design, much like a lazy susan. The idea was to be able to see whose in the cells without having to walk the beat, reducing manpower costs. The Solitary Confinement cell is a mere 6...More

Thank Pierre S
Reviewed 9 September 2017 via mobile

Engineer's will love this lockup. Cylindrical rotating design of cells. 100 years of history. Worth an hour of your time after lunch at Duncan cafe.

Thank SnowAvoiderSalem_VA
Reviewed 25 August 2017 via mobile

One of the only spinning jails left in the country. Very interesting to see the design and technology! Our kids, ages 5-11, also enjoyed it.

Thank Julie C
Reviewed 9 August 2017

This is a must see as is a round jail with a great history of earlier times. I've taken many out of town friends there and love seeing it over & over.

Thank bigjim48921
Reviewed 3 August 2017

First I must say even if you are not a history buff, or even interested in historical sites you should still visit this place. It is unreal what we used to use as a jail, and seeing it live in person is just incredible. I...More

Thank Bobby A
Reviewed 11 July 2017

Closed in 1964. Escape proof but no doors on the pie shaped cells. A Must see piece of history. Only 2 or 3 left in the United States. Don't miss it.

Thank David C
Reviewed 5 July 2017

My son and I had some time to kill after visiting the Union Pacific Railroad Museum, so we decided to take a tour of the Squirrel Cage Jail. Overall, it was an interesting albeit somewhat disorganized tour. We entered to find 1 guide who said...More

Thank DelawareCitygirl
Reviewed 23 May 2017 via mobile

I work beside it and it never looks like it's open. Never busy during the week. Please call and look up to see when they are open.

Thank 793merric
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Ask a question
Questions & Answers
7 November 2016|
AnswerShow all 3 answers
Response from MilesL44 | Reviewed this property |
No, not any more
Pat O
18 August 2016|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from tab1956 | Reviewed this property |
From their website Squirrel Cage" Rotary Cell Jail Museum 226 Pearl Street Council Bluffs, Iowa Hours: Thursday, Friday, and Saturday 11-4 No appointment necessary. For groups larger than 15 phone/e-mail in... More
19 May 2016|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from Linda B | Reviewed this property |
See next person down.