Strange Places: Museum of Crime and Punishment

Today’s strange place is unique among my other featured places, because it no longer exists. The Museum of Crime and Punishment operated in Washington DC until 2015. While open, it mixed exhibits showcasing the history of capital punishment, notorious crimes, and forensic science. One of the most notable artifacts was Ted Bundy’s Volkswagen Beetle. The museum also featured the set for the TV show America’s Most Wanted. 

Opened as a for profit museum by a former attorney and business man John Morgan, and host of America’s Most Wanted, John Walsh in 2008, the Museum of Crime and Punishment was initially very successful. However, when America’s Most Wanted was canceled, foot traffic began to decline. 

Although the museum was eventually forced to close because it failed to reach sales goals laid out in its lease, it moved to Pidgeon Forge and reopened as Alcatraz East with many of the same exhibits intact.

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