City Code of 1897 Police Regulations

The City Code of 1897 carried considerable passages relating to the Police Department. It listed a set of 15 rules and regulations, many of which are still in effect today. These include:

  • Officer to be dressed neatly
  • To avoid political and other discussions
  • Forbidden to enter bar-rooms
  • Penalty for intoxication
  • The Chief responsible to the Mayor for conduct of officers
  • Police Officers to report to the Chief.
  • To be courteous at all times.
  • Police to familiarize themselves with their beats.
  • Not to use weapons except in self-defense or for violent resistance
  • Not to leave City except upon written request
  • Must inform themselves as to laws and ordinances
  • Must disperse disorderly crowds
  • Penalty for failure to observe rules
  • Rules to be printed and read.
  • Mayor to report fines or loss of pay.

Beats & Uniform

The Code also directed the City be divided into five beats and an officer was to be assigned to each beat for one week. It also directed the Chief and his force provide for themselves and wear while on duty; "a dark blue single breasted frock coat, with policemen's buttons, with standing collar, with a badge, with suitable device on the outside of the left breast of the coat... and dark blue vest and pantaloons, light helmets in summer and dark blue helmets in winter, and dark blue overcoat, with same buttons in winter."

At the time the Chief's pay was $60 per month and the officers received $50 per month.