Police Department, 1885
Back at the turn of the century, there were only a few officers on the Albion police force. Much of the policing had to do with the drunks coming out of the saloons. With a population of only 5,000, Albion had 14 saloons. There were frequent fights, and drunks were often thrown out the front door, sometimes hitting passersby.
One officer, Frank “Mudhen” Hoyt, kept a wheelbarrow behind the police station on W. Cass St. When he came upon a drunk unable to walk, he’d ho to the station and get the wheelbarrow into which he’d load the intoxicant and take him to the city jail.
Each officer had to supply his own uniform. This was official policy until 1949 when uniforms were supplied at no cost.
The police station was located on W. Cass St., just west of the fire station. Police calls were handled by a telephone operator a half ablock away, who would turn on certain red signal lights in downtown Albion. The patrolmen would see the lights and call the operator for instructions.
Line-up in front of the Police Station, December 7, 1914.
This 1909 photo shows the inside of the police station. City marshal Oscar H. Cooper is seated at his desk, with officers Ezra M. Sova and Frank “Mudhen” Hoyt (right).
Source: Frank Passic. A Pictorial History of Albion, Michigan; From the Archives of the Albion Historical Society. Dallas, Texas: Curtis Media Corporation. 1991.