This photo shows just one of the brick walls that surrounded the DC Reformatory in Lorton VA. What many folks new to the Lorton area don't know is that the bricks used to make these wall and the buildings of the former DC Reformatory were produced by the inmates themselves.
The eight brick kilns on the property were considered some of the best on the east coast and between 1925-1927 it is estimated the inmates made over 4.2 million bricks. The kilns were located on the banks of the Occoquan River making it easier for bricks not used for the reformatory to be sold and shipped to DC. Bricks were used to build a number of buildings in DC include Cardoza HS on Clifton Street NW, now on the National Register of Historic Places.
Walking around the site looking at the brick walls you realize how important these walls once were to the neighbors who lived on the outside. Today Lorton residents enjoy being able to walk inside these walls safely and take classes or enjoy an artists exhibit at the Lorton Workhouse Art Center. Families now live in the neighborhoods that were developed as part of the property being returned to Fairfax County when the reformatory closed.
Good fences made good neighbors now they are just part of Lorton history.