3. 1894 - 1901

In May 1894, two men were added to the force. The purpose of this addition was to have an officer patrol the business district on South State Street during the night and the other to patrol downtown. This was during the administration of Dr. Cyrenus Darling, Mayor, who appointed Parris S. Banfield as marshal. Noble Tice was not re-appointed as patrolman necessitating the naming of three new officers who were: Reuben Armbruster, William Eldert and George B. Isbell. Eldert was replaced in March, 1895 by Robert Leonard. It is interesting to know that in the month of June that year, the department made eight arrests, four for drunkenness and four for violations of ordinances. At that time there were thirty-eight saloons in the city.

Mayor Warren E. Walker appointed Melvin C. Peterson as marshal in 1895 and John O’Mara as patrolman, replacing Robert Leonard. In submitting his report to the Common Council, Marshal Peterson stated that the department had made 211 arrests during the year May 1, 1895 to April 30, 1896. The police budget for that year was $3,401.80. Peterson was marshal for two years. At the start of the second year, he attempted to have the salary of City Marshal raised from $780 to $1000 a year by submitting a communication to the Council but the Finance Committee of the Council fixed the salary for the ensuing year at $780.00.

Peterson sent another communication to the Council in May 1897 recommending that the Police Department be placed under a Board of Police Commissioners and thus remove it from political influences. This was met with the same success as his previous letter, nothing was done about it.

Zenas Sweet replaced Peterson as marshal in April 1897 and served until 1899 during Mayor Charles Hiscock’s administration with an increase in salary to 900.00 a year. On May 1, 1899 Mayor Gottlob Luick appointed William C. Gerstner as marshal, so at the turn of the century the department consisted of the marshal and four patrolmen, the four being Collins, Isbell, O’Mara and Armbruster.

Mayor Royal S. Copeland selected Frank H. Warren as Marshal and Harris Ball as patrolman, replacing Gerstner and Armbruster on July 15, 1901. After receiving a communication from the office of the marshal, the Council granted that a patrolman be appointed to serve while the regular patrolmen were on vacation. This period of appointment was not to exceed two months. W.J. Randall was employed for this service.

The next mayor, Arthur Brown, gave Orton M. Kelsey the office of marshal. Kelsey was a former deputy sheriff. The same four patrolmen were retained and salaries were increased to $1000.00 for the marshal and $720.00 for the patrolmen. Harris Ball was promoted to the rank of sergeant at a salary of $900.00 annually. He was the first sergeant in the department.