This is part of all that remains of the former Ballarat Gaol. The prison was closed in 1965 and most of the gaol was demolished to allow the School of Mines to expand. It is now used as a campus for Federation University. All that remains due to heritage listings s the Main gate, warden and governor's residence and the guard tower.
The gaol was opened in 1852 with 58 cells designed to hold a mixture of male and female prisoners. A tunnel was built underground for the safe passage of prisoners to attend to nearby courthouse. In 1872, a well known bushranger Captain Moonlite (pictured) escaped from the gaol.