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Alcatraz celebrates 50 years since prison closed

SAN FRANCISCO — The black-and-white photographs show a line of prisoners — some with heads bowed, others with eyes staring forlornly at the camera — as a guard leads them to a boat for their final trip off The Rock.

The striking images were taken on March 21, 1963, the day the infamous prison on Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay was closed after holding the likes of gangsters Al Capone and Mickey Cohen.

Swarms of reporters chronicled the single-file line of departing inmates.

On Thursday, however, the National Park Service unveiled an exhibit of newly discovered photos that depict new details about the final hours of Alcatraz.

The ceremony marking the 50th anniversary of the closing was attended by former guard Jim Albright, who can be seen in the photographs in a light gray suit and dark tie, walking the shackled prisoners past reporters.


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