Monday, May 18, 2015

The History of a Met

               Constable Watson went with us because for this particular museum to be able to look in it a person has to schedule an appointment before hand. This museum is not like any other museum I have ever attended because it is a small room with books and different showcases. Just like any other police department there is history of when they started and how their uniforms looked and continued to change over the years.
             The first thing we were shown at this museum was a changing moment for me ever since, for my criminal justice career. Our tour guide pulled out a huge book from the back that has the signatures of the officers when they take an oath and begins their officer careers. He found Constable Watson’s signature and Constable Watson told us he remembers that day even though it has been over thirty years since he signed that book. That moment had such an impact on me because even though in the states we do not sign a book I want my name to hit a source that logs the name of officers. I want to take an oath to begin my officer career to do well in a community. Even though I hardly know Constable Watson his long-term career history is something that truly inspires be to have a future like that and I look up to him as a successful man in the criminal justice field. 
            Our tour guide then moved on to explain the first weapons, sources of light, sources of sound for sirens, and radios. Just by seeing the transformation over time to each tool that an officer had to carry was incredible because from what they started out with and what those same tools have came to be now is completely incredible.  Back when the Mets first started all of their equipment was completely heavy and would be hard to carry it all.  Then we moved on the see the men’s first uniform and their goal was trying to not look like the military. These uniforms were very plain and not much to them. One piece of equipment that was in the same showcase that interested me was a gold crown on a stick. This was how the officers would carry the warrens for people.  We were told that back in the day if a person was tapped on the shoulder by this crown, it was called “you have been crown.” In other terms you have been found and arrested; which I thought was neat because officer do not do that at all with warrants. There where several of different showcases that have the different uniforms and different types of hats for the males in the department. It was just so interesting to see the formation and transitions of the Mets for male officers. 
            In every part of history there is a part where females make their own way of getting involved. Back when females started to be officers their main focus was women and children.  They did not have the power to arrest yet. This power for women did not come into effect until the year 1923. Their uniforms consisted of a form of hat, long sleeved button up coat, long skirt, stockings, and boots. The entire uniform was in all black. Over the years it did not have a huge change except for the style of hats and the lengths of the coats, boots, or skirts. Since I have been in London I have seen women officers and their uniforms are now pants, shirt, and a hat. They look more like the males uniform and now they have the same duties that the male officers have.

            There were little things in the museum that we learned about such as the different badges from when royalty would change.  There was a situation with George the eighth was not going to be king but there were already badges out on the street and the officers had to bring them back and trade them in. Well come to find out the badges are worth a good chunk of money now. We also look at metals that were awarded to people over the years that help stand against criminals that got hurt or injured while in the process. There were so many different types of metals that were rewarded to people. One little detail that we got to look at was the copies of the notes from Jack the Rippers case. There was a picture of a woman named Mary Pearcey and in quotations it said, “Jill the Ripper.” We asked the guide why it would say that and he explained to us that people though it could be a woman that is kill all of these other women. He also expressed that women beck in these times were mean and just as insane as men were. All these little bits of information were very exciting and are what help transform the Mets in the type of police department that they are today. Finding out how the Mets became the Mets that they are today makes me appreciate their line of work and have more respect for their department. 

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