The gaol consists of a cluster of structures including, The Gaoler’s residence, the external kitchen block, the hospital (original gaol), the gaol including exercise yard, an outhouse, outbuilding, a well and archaeological remains.
Prisoners with short-term sentences who had been sentenced at Gundagai or at courts in the surrounding district were incarcerated in the Gundagai Gaol. Prisoners, including bushrangers, who were in transit to other gaols were also accommodated there. Although no longer in use, Gundagai Gaol is one of the few remaining gaol compounds dating from 1859 and a rare and largely intact example of its type.
In 1870 the Gundagai Gaol was classed as a ‘lock-up’ or ‘proclaimed gaol’ and could accommodate from four to twenty prisoners. During this year the actual number of prisoners received included 4 debtors; 19 males and 2 females awaiting trial; 55 males and 3 females ‘in transit’; 11 males under sentence to labour; 7 males and 3 females sentenced to imprisonment; with none in solitary confinement. The greatest number received at one time totalled 9.
Gundagai Gaol was closed in the 1970’s and a holding cell was constructed at the Gundagai Police Station in Byron Street.