BOSTON PUBLIC LIBRARY 3 9999 06660 789 4 FRAGILE DO NOT PH OTOCOPY BOSTON PUBLIC tlBl^RY City Document. — No. 2. ANNUAL REPORT CITY MARSHAL, FOR 1859. ROXBTJEY: L. B. & O. E. WESTON, PRINTERS, GUILD ROW. 1860. Citg of |l0^hrB* In Board of Aldebmen, Jan. 9, 1860. Ordered, That six hundred copies of the Eeport of the City Marshal be printed for the use of the City Council. JOSEPH W. TUCKER, City Clerh. REPORT. To the Mayor a7id Aldermen of the City of Roxhury : Gentlemen, — I herewith submit the following in rela- tion to the Police Department and its labors during the year just passed, viz. : From the 1st of January, 1859, inclusive, to the 1st of the present month, there have been 1151 arrests, 33 of which were for offences committed without the City of Roxbury, leaving 1118 arrests in the City. The" 1151 arrests were disposed of in the following manner, viz. : Discharged without complaint, Fined and paid, .... Committed for non-payment of fine, Sentenced to the House of Correction, Discharged by Court, Bound over to a higher Court, Appealed, Put on probation. Sentenced to the State Reform School, Put under bonds to keep the peace, Sentence postponed, Disclosed on a liquor case, and discharged, 379 278 172 122 86 50 25 19 13 3 3 1 1151 CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 2. The offences were as follows, viz. Drunkenness, Assault, and assault and battery, Larceny, .... Disturbing the peace, Common drunkards, Vagrancy, .... Violation of City Ordinances, Violation of the Liquor Law, Breaking and entering. Fruit pilfering, Malicious mischief. Violation of Sunday Law Assault on officers, Incendiarism, Insanity, Trespassing, Stealing a ride, Threatening bodily harm Stubborn children, Truancy, Assault with a knife, Attempt at rape, Adultery, Violation of the Dog Law, Obtaining money by false pretences Surrendered by bail. Escaped from Reform School, Suspicious persons, Contempt of Court, Obstructing the Channel at Roxbury Point, Common brawler. Assault with a gun. Indecent exposure. Assault with intent to kill. Cruelty to animals . Discharging fire-crackers. Passing counterfeit money. Making bonfires. Forgery, Passing forged check, 462 176 118 64 47 36 35 32 24 22 19 17- 17 14 7 7 7 6 5 5 5 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 1151 CITY MARSHAL'S REPORT. 5 Of the 1151 arrests, 912 were foreign born, 229 born in America, and 10 birth-place unknown. Of the 912 foreign born, 787 were born in Ireland, the rest principally in G-ermany and England. Out of the 229 born in America, 114 were of foreign parentage; leaving 115 only of all the arrests born of American parents. But 58 of the whole number were born in Roxbury, and out of these but 13 of American parents. 242 of the arrests were of persons under 21 years of age. 1005 were males, and 146 females. 635 persons have been provided during the past year with lodgings in the Lock-up; of these, 495 were foreign- ers. 575 were males, and 60 were females. 340 cases of reported Truancy have been looked after, and a considerable amount of Stolen Property has been recovered and delivered to the owners. The expenses of the Police Department for the year 1859, have been about $16,322.82; being about $3517.42 more than for the year 1858. $1674.19 of this increase is for pay of an additional Watchman from the first of Feb- ruary last, together with the increased pay of the Watch- men, raised from $1.62J per night to $2.00 per night. About $700 has been expended for Sunday Police, for extra service of the Regular Police, and for services of Special Police. The earnings of the Police for the year 1859 have been about $3000. Most of this sum is received by the Judge of the Police Court, and by him paid over to the City Treasurer. All that comes into my hands, is for mittimus fees, for witness fees of the Police while attending Court at Ded- ham, and for services of the Police. In accordance with an act passed by the Legislature of last year, which went into effect on the sixth of May last, the Judge of the Police Court draws the mittimus fees of 6 CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 2. all those committed on sentence. All the mittimus fees that come into my hands now are for those committed for further examination. I have received during the year past the sum of $627.30. Had I received all the mittimus fees, as I did previous to the sixth of May last, I should have received about $200 more, making in all $827.30. $70.10 was for mittimus fees earned in 1858, but not drawn till January, 1859. I have paid out during the year for services rendered in arresting and securing prisoners, for conveyance of prison- ers, for Daguerreotypes of prisoners, for handcuffs, &c., the sum of $388.44. $211.75 have been paid for convey- ing prisoners to Dedham. The establishment of the head-quarters of the Police at the City Hall has been found on trial to work well. Every morning the Day Police assemble at the office, to report and receive all necessary directions, and they call at the office at frequent intervals during the day. The Watchmen all meet at the office in the evening, before going on their beats. This plan gives the Police an opportunity to become acquainted with, and to understand each other, the ten- dency of which is to secure unity of purpose and harmony of action, so necessary to the efficiency of the department. The regular police force of the City consists of the Marshal and seven Assistants, besides the Keeper of the Lock-up, and ten "Watchmen. One of the Assistants remains in the office during the day, whose business it is to keep the record, and attend to the various duties appertaining to the office, and at night, also, one remains there for the purpose of attending to such calls as may from time to time be made during the night. The Watchmen call at every hour during the night, to report what may have occurred on their beats, and to learn what applications have been made for their services. CITY MARSHAL'S REPORT. 7 The Lock-up is under the charge of one of the Assist- ants, who remains there during the night, takes care of the prisoners and attends to applications for lodging ,• he also has the charge of the Police Court Room, and acts as offi- cer of the Court. And it gives me great pleasure here to express my satisfaction for his efforts to keep the cells clean and neat, for his humanity towards those unfortu- nate persons who come under his charge, for his faithful- ness and ability, and for the zeal and interest which he manifests in the welfare of the department. Four new cells have been added to the Lock-up, which were much needed, as many times the prisoners had to be crowded. The past year in the Police Department has been a year of active duties, with no seeming cessation night or day. Much of the business of the Police arises from the use of intoxicating liquors ; and it may be asked by some, why no more is done to suppress the illegal sale of liquors. In answer I will say, that I have endeavored to carry out the liquor law, and indeed all other laws, in such a manner as in my judgment seemed best calculated to attain the object which the laws were made to secure. More complaints might have been made for violations of the law, as parties frequently came to me and wanted to test- ify against some person in order to gratify a spirit of re- venge for some real or fancied wrong ; such witnesses cannot be relied on, as before the case would come to trial the parties would often make up, and when the wit- ness was brought on the stand his memory would be en- tirely oblivious as far as any sale of liquor was concerned. And then, besides, the liquor drank now-a-days has a curious effect upon the mind of a witness, making him for- get names, dates, countenances, localities, his well-known friends and acquaintances — rendering him unable to tell whether he ever drank intoxicating liquors or not, and 8 CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 2. causing him to see a wonderful difference between a lie on the witness stand in a liquor case and a lie anywhere else. Persons have come to me, wishing to be employed to go round and drink, for the purpose of being made wit- nesses ; such persons, together with their plans, receive no encouragement from me. I do not believe in the policy of employing men to aid in the violation of laws, for the purpose of convicting the violators. A law may be framed with great care and seeming wisdom ,* but it is all in vain to talk about its practical utility, while the most impor- tant thing of all is left unprovided for, viz., a practicable means for procuring legal testimony. Those persons who are acquainted with the practical operation of laws, might well be supposed to be better judges of their merits than those who have no experience j and the framers of laws might often learn more from the practical experience of one man than from the theories of a hundred others who have nothing else but theories to offer. Though there are undoubtedly many places in our city where intoxicating liquors are retailed by the glass, yet it is done in a secret manner, great care being taken to exclude the observation of the police. But comparatively few burglaries have been committed in our city during the past year. A special Watch has from time to time secretly patrolled different sections of the city, for the purpose of looking after burglars ; and it is but fair to presume that this watch has operated as a means of prevention, as at the same time burglaries have been very frequent in other places. Quite a number of men have been employed as a Sun- day Police, and it is believed with very good results in preserving the quiet of the Sabbath and protecting the fruit and other property in the more thinly settled por- tions of our city. CITY MARSHAL'S EEPORT. 9 The new "Dog Law" seems to work well. By the ex- ertions of the police the number of licensed dogs has reached as high as 822, and the amount received for licenses is |1110. In conformity with the law, a large number of dogs has been destroyed by the police, who have performed this disagreeable duty in a quiet way, without any of those unpleasant results which would natu- rally follow from employing persons outside of the police to slaughter dogs simply for the pay. Very many worth- less and troublesome dogs have ended their days during the past year, from various causes ; and even the feline race has not been exempted from mortality. The carcasses of the dogs and other animals found dead in the streets and vacant lots had to be buried, and it became necessary to employ some person to do it ; accord- ingly a canine uiidertaker was appointed, and during the past year this useful functionary has buried 901 dogs, 409 cats, 21 hogs, 1 calf, and 1 skunk; all of these bodies were found exposed, having no friends to claim them. The un- dertaker has been faithful to his trust, performing his mel- ancholy duty with evident pleasure, notwithstanding his occupation was a grave one. Many lost children have been picked up and taken care of by the police. Quite a number of begging impostors, making their ap- pearance in our city, have been overhauled by the police, and warned to leave the city, thus preventing the kind- hearted and benevolent from being imposed upon in nume- rous instances. The Police have to look after quite a large number of Juvenile offenders, who are not brought before the Court on account of their age ; this class of boys needs much looking after, as most of them are uncontrolled by parental author- ity at home, and, sad to relate, are being educated to fill our prisons. Here is a field open for the truly benevo- 2 10 CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 2. lent; where infinitely more good might be done than in feeding and encouraging lying beggars and thieving paupers. There have been many cases of reported Truancy from the teachers in our schools ; and though I have no disposi- tion to find fault with the teachers, yet it has seemed to me that sometimes proper enquiries have not been made by them to ascertain the cause of the scholar's absence before reporting him as a truant, as in a large number of cases it has turned out, on inquiries by the police, that the scholar has been kept at home by his parents. The po- lice are willing at all times to look after the actual tru- ants, but it is no part of their duty to ascertain the cause of every child's absence from school, however convenient such a course might be for the teachers. I have as yet made no complaints under the new Truant Ordinance, but shall do so as soon as I am satisfied that I have the neces- sary amount of legal evidence in order to insure convic- tion. The police have been procuring evidence for the last few weeks, and I confidently hope to have several cases before the Court in a very short time. The citizens have been much annoyed at times by crowds of rowdyish young men and boys standing on the •sidewalks, obstructing the passage and making indecent remarks. Several persons of this class have been brought before the Court and fined, and the result has been benefi- cial, as they are beginning to learn that the sidewalks were made for the free use of all, and not to be used as a loafer's stand. Incendiarism is one of the most fearful crimes with which the police have to deal. During the past few years our city has suffered much from the depredations of incen- diaries. Last Spring the police were successful in arresting quite a number of them, and since that time our city has been comparatively free from fires. Most of these incen- CITY MARSHAL'S REPORT. 11 diaries "w^ere young men residing in our city, and their arrest carried sorrow to the homes and hearts of their parents. However much I might feel for those parents, and for their sakes wish it otherwise, yet the path of duty was plain before me, and I felt it incumbent on me to use all fair and honorable means to protect the community from these depredators, and to bring them to justice when caught. If the parents of any of these misguided and de- luded young men are disposed to find fault with the police for arresting their sons, let them ask themselves if they ought not rather to be thankful that they were thus cut short in their mad career, than suffered to go on till they had added the crime of murder to that of arson; for surely those who would aid and countenance the setting fire to a dwelling in the night, whose occupants lay slumbering, all unconscious of danger, cannot be very far removed from the guilt which attaches to the hand of the murderer, and had their diabolical plans succeeded, who could tell the awful consequences which might have followed. There seems to be in the community a fearful mania for setting fires, which is principally confined to that class of young men called ^^ Engine Runners,^' who are always foremost in rows at fires as well as all other rows, and who had much rather see half the buildings in the city burned, than that the machine they blow for should get washed. These rowdies are a nuisance everywhere; a curse to good morals and good order; their toleration in the engine-houses and around the engines at fires is an unmitigated evil, which, when discountenanced and discon- tinued, will lessen the expenses of the Police Department, besides being beneficial in other respects. Assaults on the police have become somewhat frequent in our city as well as in other places. This is an offence which should meet with the severest condemnation, not 12 CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 2. only by all good citizens, but by our courts of justice. The policeman is expected to preserve the peace of the community, wherever a police organization exists ; to se- cure all desperate and dangerous persons, and keep them from harming others. In the discharge of this duty he is often assailed by dangerous ■weapons, and his life put in peril. It may seem a light matter to some that a police- man is beaten and wounded in a dangerous manner, yet he may have a wife and children to whom his life and welfare may be as dear as the life and welfare of the citizen is to his, and equally dear also as is that of the court who is to pass sentence for the offence. Once let it be understood that an assault on a policeman, while in the discharge of his duty, is to be passed over lightly by our courts of jus- tice, and one of the great safeguards of society becomes weakened, none can feel secure, and even the very courts themselves will cease to command respect. Let the laws always sufficiently protect the police, and then they will protect the community. Society has no right to expect the officer to risk his life in upholding the law whose pro- tecting power is refused him. It has often happened that the police, in securing pris- oners, have required assistance from the citizens, who have always been found ready to lend a helj)ing hand, for which they have my thanks. The Watchmen have a large territory to guard at night, altogether too large, in my opinion, for the number of men employed ; and I would recommend the addition of two watchmen in the easterly section of our city, and two in the westerly section. As our city increases in ijoj^ulation, more streets, courts and alleys are laid out and built upon, rendering the labors of the watchmen more difficult, as the more streets, courts, alleys and buildings there are, tlie more there is to be looked after and guarded, and the more hiding-places for rogues. One man might more casi- CITY MARSHAL'S REPORT. 13 ly watch several acres of territory with only one building thereon, than several men could watch one acre laid out in streets, courts and alleys, and covered with buildings. I recommend this increase with reluctance, knowing that it will add about $3,000 to the already increased expenses of the Department; but as 1 am of the opinion that more watchmen are needed, I have felt it my duty to recom- mend the increase, leaving its expediency for your con- sideration. Much labor is performed by the police which is not made public. The citizens hear of the arrest of a crimi- nal, but do not know by how many days and nights of labor and watching the arrest has been brought about, neither can the public know how many are prevented from the commission of crime, from fear of the vigilance of the police, or through their labors and watchfulness. The duties of a policeman are often arduous and dan- gerous ; he has to listen to all sorts of- complaints, to come in contact with all sorts of persons, to deal with crime in all its various forms, to submit to insults, and to run the risk of limb and life. He sees the dark chambers of the human heart laid bare, and misery in its worst forms exposed to his view; he is often made the recipient of secrets, which he is in honor bound to keep. The pro- per discharge of his duties often requires the exercise of great moral as well as physical courage, coolness, sagacity and promptitude, and it is not every man who applies who is fitted for the place. The Police Department should not be considered as an institution of charity, to take into employ those who can- not do anything else. Because a man is poor and has a family, is of itself no good reason why he or his friends should claim his appointment on the police. The first question to be considered, and that independent of all others, is the man's qualifications for the situation ; and 14 CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 2. where there are two men of equal fitness, one having a family, the other not, or if both have families, preference should be given to the one most in need. The several members of the Police Department, during the past year, have labored earnestly for its welfare, by faithfully discharging their several duties. In my own efforts I have placed much reliance on them, and they have cheerfully and with promptitude responded to my wishes, evincing a determination to labor for the welfare of the city. I do not believe the Department was ever in a more harmonious condition than at present ; and much of its success may be attributed to the harmony and good feeling existing. The citizens of Roxbury have no reason to be ashamed of such a police force as is placed under my direction ,• on the contrary, they may well be proud. And I cannot but esteem it an honor to be at the head of such a body of men, even though some political upstart may occasionally charge them with corruption. So far as my duties are concerned, I can only say that I have endeavored to per- form them according to the best of my ability, though I have not been able to accomplish all I wished, and per- haps have fallen far short of the expectations of some. In conclusion, I would return my thanks to those who have placed me in my present position, for the confidence reposed in me ; and my thanks are due to all who have in any way aided me in the performance of my duties. Respectfully submitted, BENJ. MERIAM, City Marshal. Roxhury, Jan. 2d, 1860.