From the Richmond Whig, 7/2/1861

DESTRUCTIVE FIRE. - Yesterday afternoon, the workshops in the State Penitentiary were destroyed by fire, involving a heavy loss of machinery and materials. It is not positively known how the fire originated, but the belief is that it was the work of a design. The prisoners were all removed beyond danger, and placed under a sufficient guard. The massive, fire proof walls of the main building prevented the destruction of the entire institution.