Hay Gaol Museum
Built in the late 1870s and officially opened in 1880, Hay Gaol has had a rich and colourful history. It has served as a prison, maternity hospital, POW detention centre, institute for girls and now, finally, a museum. Standing sentinel over the town of Hay for more than 140 years, it now tells the story of the town, its residents and the changing world around it.
Wander through the historic buildings and hear the stories of its past, including the tale of the POW who managed to escape. See the van that brought in troubled girls in the dead of night or sit inside the solitary confinement cells.
The museum also houses many other artefacts from the Hay region, including Australia’s oldest-known bark canoe. There’s a significant collection of farm and plant machinery, wooden windmills, motorbikes, and clothing and handwork from the 1880s. Apex Park, within the site’s grounds, is perfect for a picnic and has play equipment.
Actively welcomes people with access needs.
Caters for people who are blind or have vision loss