The city used prisoners from the parish prison to do manual labor. On occasion, prisoners used these work outings as opportunities to escape.
Note that the “black habituate of Customhouse and Franklin” [Image 2] either lived or worked (or both) in Storyville, the red-light district, where she was arrested. (See page 20ff for more on Storyville).
[Department of Police & Public Buildings. Correspondence, 1882-1910]