One of three most famous prisons in California is the Folsom State Prison (aside from Alcatraz and San Quentin). Folsom was declared as a prison museum due to efforts of Johnny Cash whose biographical information are displayed in the House #8 of the prison vicinity. The admission fees collected from Folsom goes as a fund to different cancer researches.
Folsom Museum displays practically everything valuable to people who served in the prison ? from the prisoners to the correctional officers. There are artifacts of homemade shivs and lethal weapons which were confiscated from inmates. One of these were used in the 1937 riot where officer Clarence Larkin was killed.
Valuables like handcuffs, chains, and belts are displayed in glass cases. A 19th century model Gatling gun and a 20th century Thompson sub machine gun are also part of the exhibit.
Folsom Prison Museum houses a ?mock cell? where the dummy of Sam the Perpetual Prisoner in striped shirt is shown. Sam's dummy, who was in inmate back in 1890s, has an animated head which turns sidewards every ten seconds. An audio narration at Sam's cell talks about the difficulties they ensure as prisoners.
The star of the museum is a 9-feet tall Ferris wheel which was built by inmate William J. B. Burkey. The magnificent structure was made out of 250,000 toothpicks. Burkey was imprisoned in 1928 for the crime of burglary. He managed to escape in 1929 and when recaptured and sentenced 30 years in prison, he found the motivation to built the big Ferris wheel. Creations of other inmates are displayed through licensed plates.
Other interesting artifacts include old guard tower and a combined sink and toilet from a prison cell.