First Responders: Policemen and Policewomen

Updated on Sep 11, 2019.   Originally added on Aug 18, 2016 by Kathy Pinna
From traffic control (don't you wish NYC traffic today were like the 1911 photo?) to crowd control, police men and women have been on the front lines. These are photos of those who have sworn to serve and protect, dating from the 1800's and early 1900's. In some ways, a lot has changed but the duties of these men and women have remained the same.

Historical facts: Thousands of years ago in China, "prefects" carried out investigations. In ancient Greece, slaves were responsible for crowd control and made arrests. And in the Roman empire, the army was in charge of security while local watchmen would be hired for extra help.


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First Responders: Policemen and Policewomen

New York PD, 1908

Dig that phone!

Women taking police exam


They might be giants

In 1925, they wanted policemen who were over 6 ft - these guys are measuring up!

A "rurale", 1903

A Mexican "border policeman" (rurale) on horseback.

Detectives escorting hitman

The hitman was called "Petto the Ox" - 1903.

Using a mirror to direct traffic

1907 comic photo

Making out while policeman peeks in . . . oh, the teenage years!

Swearing in one of the "little band of sleuths"

Yes, they did that - they called her a part of the "little band of sleuths".

Handcuffing a suspect

A policeman and policewoman demonstrate how to handcuff a suspect.

1905 - "The Life of an American Policeman"

Still from the movie.

Policewomen receiving marksmanship training

Guarding President Roosevelt

Washington DC police guarding TR just before his death.

Police parade, 1904

5th Ave, NYC

Harbor police, 1926

Traffic control

In 1911 New York City.

Moments in Time

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