RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) — On Friday, Governor Ralph Northam announced that several items used to execute people in Virginia were being transferred to the Virginia Museum of History and Culture in Richmond.
“This action closes the era of state-sponsored execution in Virginia,” said Governor Northam. “The Commonwealth asked the Museum to accept these items, as they have the curatorial expertise to appropriately manage and interpret such materials.”
After executing more than 1,300 people, Northam signed legislation to end the use of the death penalty in March 2021. Virginia was the 23rd state to abolish the death penalty and the first one in the south.
At the time, Northam said the death penalty has been disproportionately applied to Black people and is the product of a flawed judicial system that doesn’t always get it right. Since 1973, more than 170 people around the country have been released from death row after evidence of their innocence was uncovered, he said.
“The Commonwealth’s history of using capital punishment is an important part of history, and the Museum is focused on telling Virginia’s full and true story for future generations,” Northam added.
Officials say the 114-year-old electric chair was used to execute 267 people. It was originally installed at the Virginia State Penitentiary on Spring Street near downtown Richmond in 1908 and later was moved to Greensville Correctional Center.
It remained there until earlier this week.
In addition, the Commonwealth donated the medical gurney used for executing people by lethal injection, along with other tools used to carry out executions, including leather straps.
The following items were donated:
|Phillips Heart Monitor||Heart Monitor Model M3536A||US00327726||1|
|Eden Heart Monitor||Heart Monitor Model IM50||333153-M17602270057||1|
|Eden Heart Monitor||Heart Monitor Model IM50||333152-M15304290007||1|
|Wooden Partition||Partition Used For Lethal Injections||None||1|
|Curtain||Blue Partition Curtain Used For Lethal Injections||None||1|
|Medical Gurney||Gurney Model 600||6367T||1|
|Resistor Bank||Test Equipment for Electric Chair||None||1|
|Execution Chair||Execution Chair – Oak||None||1|
|Base||Base for Chair Mounted to Floor||None||1|
|Wall Phone||Wall Phone – Red||None||1|
|Wall Switch||Wall key-switch for Warden||None||1|
|Control Panel Unit||Controls for Electrocution Execution||None||1|
|Aluminum Pot Large||Pot for soaking sponges||None||1|
|Aluminum Pot Small||Pot for soaking sponges||None||1|
|Aluminum Strainer||Draining of Sponges||None||1|
|Indicator Lights/Switch||Carlon Indicator Lights||None||1|
|Leg Straps||Leg straps for gurney||None||14|
|Chest Strap||Chest strap for Gurney||None||2|
|Ankle Strap||Ankle Strap for Gurney With Key||None||2|
|Thigh Straps||Thigh Straps for Gurney||None||2|
|Keys||Spare Keys for Ankle Straps||None||4|
|Natural Sponges||Sponges for Contact Points||None||3|
|Face Mask||Leather Face Mask||None||4|
|Leg Strap||Leg Contact||None||1|
|Spare Contact||Spare Contacts||None||2|
|Spare Spring Straps||Spare Springs||None||4|
|Rubber Electrical Gloves||1 Pair||None||1|
|Leather Gloves||2 Pair||None||2|
|Red Rubber Gloves||3 Pair||None||3|
|Copper Helmet||Head Contact||None||1|
|120 Grit Sand Paper||Cleaning||None||3|
|Red Wall Phone||Spare Phone||None||1|
|Spare Leather||Spare Leather||None||1|
|Long Leather Strip||Spare Strip for Helmet||None||6|
|Short Leather Strip||Spare Strip for Helmet||None||7|
|Amplifier||Amplifier for Sound- McGohan Electronics Model MSB103||None||1|