Bart’s new mailing address at Graham Correctional Center in Hillsboro, Illinois & how to write him using e-mail

“Mail Call”.  Without a doubt, prisoners receiving and returning mails or e-mails is their absolute favorite past time!  Go ahead, make a new friend!   Barton has the time, bandwidth and inclination to respond to EVERYONE AND ALL who take the time and have the courtesy to write him.

Barton can also receive and reply to e-mail through a prison sanctioned e-mail service called GTL Connect written further about below.

REGULAR POST MAIL (Mail can also be sent via FedEx and UPS)

Barton McNeil K-75924
12078 Illinois Route 185
Hillsboro, IL 62049


Barton enjoys receiving written letters, articles, books or anything else you might want to send by regular mail.  Be forewarned however no Christmas cards with glitter, anything with tape on it, or the use of a thick Sharpie magic market will be rejected by the prison guards.  They are under strict orders to make sure that NO KIND of drug related contraband making its way into the prison such as liquid LSD being put under a marker pen.  They also will reject anything that doesn’t show the person’s name and return mailing address.  No cash or postal stamps can be received by the prisoner.  Photographs cannot depict any “hand gestures” or signs that might be interpreted as gang signs.   Return addresses should be handwritten using pen, and NOT using a sticker label of any kind.  Stickers in general are all disallowed in a prisoner’s mail. Later in this post you can view a list of DON’Ts as published by the correctional authorities.  

Unfortunately about 50% of mail Bart receives gets rejected for one reason or another.  Bart then gets given a slip of paper that says the mail has been returned but no other information for him to write you back for example, unless you try, try and try again and once he receives it, you’ll have made a life-long friend!  There is no limit on how many pages the letter is or information you send such as printed articles etc.  A person can also Barton a book on Amazon for example and have Amazon ship it directly to Barton using the below “ship to address” and the guards will then process that book or periodical and give it to Barton.  Barton loves military history, music, current events and many other topics.  He will be entertained by whatever he is fortunate to receive from you.


When using the prison sanctioned e-mail system, e-mail credits cost 20 for $3.00, or just $.05 cents apiece.  They are limited to about a half to one page of text with all incoming and outgoing mail reviewed to ensure no illegal activity is going on.  To sign up please click GTL Connect Network

In the upper right hand corner you will need to Click “Create New Account”.  Bart is located in the State of Illinois (Illinois Department of Corrections) at the Graham Correctional Center located in Hillsboro, IL.  You will need to put in Barton’s name and his prisoner number K-75924.  The service provider requires identification verification before e-mails can be sent and received.  Most e-mails take just one additional day to be received by Barton and then his reply will take a one-day period in which to be received.  This is due to the e-mails actually needing to be read by a censor which is understandable given the circumstances.  


Barton can now receive video visits however one has to sign up for them.  A person then can schedule a video visit 2 weeks in advance and the visit can last about an hour.

Video Visitation


Be forewarned that there are lots of “do’s and don’ts” when writing prisoners.  For example I sent this year on April 12th a letter to Bart that contained some legal documents.  I expected him to receive them.  He never did.  ‘Lo and behold in the midst of June I received it back.  So much for timeliness!  You will note on the below “returned mail” image that there is a stamp across the top where mail is returned and they will usually indicate as to why.  But it could be for any variety of reasons such as “No Inmate ID#” or “Name and ID# Do Not Match”.  Or that there is Correspondence Not Approved or Contraband Enclosed.  They disallow photographs of persons making any hand gesture whatsoever such as a “thumbs up” or a “pointed finger”.  They construe this as “gang signs”.  They also disallow any photographs of persons wearing undergarments. 

Correspondence as sent to him by his cousin Chris you will note in the below image was returned for the sake of “Excessive Tape”.  What tape was used you might wonder?  On this envelope he had inappropriately used a clear 2″ wide strip of packing tape to secure his mailing return address and to secure the address label for Barton. 

It was too much for a prison official to remove the tape to ensure there was no contraband underneath it such as liquid LSD.  In fact would not be surprised in the least if something were returned that was determined to have “too much glue”. 

Also any mail that does not have a name and return address on it will also be thrown in the trash and as there is no return address nobody will know why, where or when that piece of mail addressed to Bart was thrown out.  When mail is returned and rejected the prison officials usually inform the prisoner the reasoning why.  So that they in turn can communicate the same to whomever the sender is.  Assuming of course that the prisoner knows who the sender was in the first place.  In this instance Bart was never informed of the mail addressed to him was returned to the sender (me) due to “Excessive Tape”.  So e-mail is usually the easiest way to correspond with an inmate these days.

Example of a returned letter from Pinckneyville Correctional Center due to “Excessive Tape”

Oh no! Bart’s 2021 Christmas related send-out was rejected too! This time as the Christmas card featured “glitter” on it.

OK so the prison sent a form at least this time showing the list of things that can’t be sent such as ANYTHING “GLUED OR PASTED”. EVEN CRAYON, MARKER AND HIGHLIGHTER, GLITTER OR METALIC INK PENS. THE BELOW EVEN SAYS “COLORED PAPER AND MUSICAL CARDS”. Don’t quite understand why “Colored Paper” would be on the list as all cards are comprised of “colored paper”. Geez! See below two images that might be good to review and contain some information not covered in this post.

Here is some facility data as of June, 2024 his move-in date:

Graham Correctional Center
Opened: September 1980
*Operational Capacity: 2,027
Medium Security Adult Male
Population Graham Correctional Center: 1,324
Population Graham Reception & Classification Center: 367
Total Population: 1,691 (as of 6/30/23)
Average Annual Cost Per Individual: $37,248 (FY22)To learn more about Graham Correctional Center, visit the following link:

Graham Correctional Center: (217) 532-6961

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