Rock Island Police Department
In the early days of Rock Island the police force was small, being in proportion to the needs of the city in this respect. As the population increased the number of guardians of the property and peace of the citizens was gradually increased, mainly by the addition of night men. For many years the marshal was the only day man on ordinary occasions. He staid about the city offices and if anything came up demanding his services he went out alone and disposed of the business. About thirty years ago the first attempt was made to prescribe uniforms for the members of the force, but each man was allowed considerable latitude in the matter, with the result that there was a wide variety in the makeups. It is only during the last fifteen years that the officers have been uniformed with any degree of precision in the details of dress. The force now employed consists of: Chief of police, two desk sergeants, two plain clothes men, a police matron, sixteen patrol-men, and the following apparatus: One rubber tire ambulance, one patrol wagon, one chief’s buggy.
Source: Historic Rock Island County, pub. Kramer & Company, Rock Island, Illinois, 1908