One place can hold a big story.
Learn the history of a former prison from the people who lived it.
The GrowingChange History Project (GCHP) is an independent public history project created to support the research and interpretation of a former prison in Wagram, North Carolina. It aims to amplify GrowingChange youth leaders’ work to transform the site into a farm and community center. This project began as a partnership between GrowingChange and the Museum Studies MA program at UNC Greensboro (UNCG). It incorporates the ongoing participation of a wealth of community members whose personal stories are a vital part of the history of the Wagram prison camp.
Explore our exhibit about North Carolina incarceration history through the lens of the old Wagram prison.
Together, what can we do about mass incarceration?
With the guidance of GrowingChange youth leaders, the GrowingChange History Project engages young people and visitors from across North Carolina and the wider US to critically reflect on incarceration history and to imagine alternatives.
GrowingChange formed in response to the need for alternatives to mass incarceration in Scotland County, NC. Using a “prison flip” method to turn an old chain-gang-era prison into a farm, community center, and museum, the organization strives to transform the lives of young people who have been impacted by the carceral system.
- To introduce visitors to the history of the North Carolina prison system through the story of one chain-gang-era prison
- To invite young people to engage with the idea of alternatives to mass incarceration
- To deepen public understanding of the history of the chain gang era in North Carolina and its legacy and encourage audiences to make a personal connection
- To broaden the base of support nationally for GrowingChange’s model for prison reuse and youth empowerment
- Exhibit curated by Scaffold Exhibits & Consulting in collaboration with GrowingChange
- Audio stories app by Diver Collective
- Graphic design by Gigi Graphics
- Emily-Kate Hannapel, Web Content Developer
- Max Symuleski, Digital Map Developer
- Cadence Wilmoth, Researcher and Oral History Interviewer
- Lacey Wilson, Oral History Interviewer
Scotland County Commissioner Betty Blue Gholston and Geraldean Douglas
This project is made possible by funding from the North Carolina Humanities Council, a statewide nonprofit and affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.
In memory of Julius Douglas and John Thames