Vintage Rhode Island State Law Enforcement Insignia

Vintage State of Rhode Island law Enforcement Insignia.

See links to other pages of this type at the bottom of this post.

Click on images to enlarge.

Worn by Traffic Court officers in the 1980’s and 90s.

Worn on windbreakers – 1980s

James O’Neil served as Rhode Island’s Attorney General from 1987 to 1993.

First Issue – Worn 1970s.

Second Issue – Current

Worn circa 1960s – 1970s.

Worn by officers who patrolled the State Institutions in Cranston. The department disbanded circa 1990.

First Issue – Black Lettering – 1970s.

Second Issue – Gold Lettering

Early issue – date(s) unknown.

Worn 1970s – 1980s.

Worn 1980s.

Click on links below to see more vintage Rhode Island patches. 

     Vintage Municipal R. I. Police Insignia 

     Vintage Dept. of Corrections Insignia

     Vintage R. I. State Police Insignia

     Vintage R. I. Dept. of Forestry Insignia 

     Vintage R. I. Fish & Wildlife Insignia

     Vintage R, I, Sheriff Dept. Insignia

Smithfield, R. I., Police Station Photos

    The original police station was located in the Smithfield Town Hall from 1950 until 1972.  Land owned by Burton and Mary Mowry was donated to the town for a new police station site, and ground breaking ceremonies took place on May 27, 1972.  Dedication ceremonies were held on January 14, 1973. 

Click on images to enlarge.

Groundbreaking for new station, May 27, 1972.
L to R: Deputy Chief James McVey, Chief Arthur Gould, Corporal Saverio Serapiglia

Expansion of the police station – 2016/17



Vintage Smithfield, R. I., Police Photos

Click on images to enlarge.

Smithfield’s first police car.
A 1930 Ford Model A.

Chief Kelly – 1935 Ford

Police Chief Lacroix

Washington Highway – 1940s

Officer Adolph Schenck investigates a traffic accident on Douglas Pike in 1951 while Alfred Angel and Milton Corey look on.

Smithfield Police – 1950

The police station was located in the Town Hall.

Smithfield Police – 1961

Washington Highway – 1970s

In 1977, the department drove light blue police cars.

Officer Joe Plachino looking at camera.

Captain Prescott J. Williams, Jr.

1976 Traffic Wagon

1978 Ford

Officer Charles McCann
Douglas Pike at Washington Hwy.

Chief Vincent O’Connell

1983 Chevrolet

Farnum Pike at Old County Rd.

Photo taken in 2007

Photo taken in 2007.

photo taken in 2007.




A Policeman Shot – 1884

     From the Daily Kennebec Journal, (Augusta, Maine), April 23, 1884.  The shooting occurred on April 22, 1884.  The suspect was convicted. 


From The Sun, (NY), April 23, 1884 

Smithfield Police Hiring Ad – 1971

     Appeared in The Observer on May, 20, 1971.

The Observer – May 20, 1971

Smithfield Police, R. I., Uniform Patches

Smithfield R. I. Police

Worn 1950s – 1960s

Smithfield R. I. Police

Worn 1960s – 1970s

A rare version of the Smithfield patch showing a white background. Possibly a prototype.

Smithfield R.I. Police
Worn from 1973 to 2017.
This is an early issue. Later issues were fully embroidered.

Second Issue

Second Issue – 2021

Autism Awareness – Silver
Issued March, 2021

Autism Awareness – gold
Issued March, 2021

Sept. 11th 20th Anniversary Patch
Issued September, 2021

Breast Cancer Awareness Patch
Issued October, 2021

Issued November, 2021

Issued May, 2022

Silver Patch, First Issued October 2022

Issued October, 2022

Issued in 2023.

Smithfield Police Car Photos

Smithfield, Rhode Island

Click on images to enlarge.

Smithfield’s first police car, a Ford Model A

Chief William Kelley c. 1935

Washington Highway – 1940s

Washington Highway – 1970s

1976 Traffic Wagon

Farnum Pike, August, 1977

Officer Charles McCann
Douglas Pike at Washington Hwy.

1978 Ford

Traffic Safety Jeep – 1983

Chevy Patrol Car, 1983

Farnum Pike at Old County Rd.

May, 2006

May, 2006

Traffic Vehicle, 2007


April, 2007

April, 2007

New Silver and Black Graphics November, 2014

November, 2014

July, 2018

June, 2018

June, 2018

July, 2018

July, 2018


Smithfield, Rhode Island
December 11, 2018

March, 2021








A Murderous Night In Cumberland

Originally Published in The Smithfield Times, November, 2015

A Murderous Night in Cumberland

By Jim Ignasher  

    The Valley Falls Baptist Church was filled to capacity as the funeral service began, forcing some mourners to wait outside.  At the head of the isle was a simple black coffin in which the deceased lay.  One newspaper reported that he looked “life-like”, as if “only sleeping”.  The Reverend Ellison delivered a eulogy that moved many to tears, and when it was over, a horse-drawn hearse carried the departed to his place of final rest in the Moshassuck Cemetery in Central Falls.  The date was April 29, 1901, and the funeral of the murdered police officer was the culmination of events which had begun four days earlier.

      In the spring of 1901, businesses in Cumberland, Lincoln, and Central Falls had been the targets of nighttime burglaries, all believed committed by the same person(s). In recent days three unsuccessful attempts had been made to break into the Burnham Store Company in Cumberland, a dry goods, grocery, and general merchandise establishment.  Figuring that a fourth attempt was likely, on the night of April 24th, Cumberland’s Chief of Police concealed himself inside hoping to make an arrest. At about 1 a.m., he heard someone outside the back door, and with revolver at the ready waited to see what would come next.  The would-be burglars worked on the door for the next fifteen minutes but couldn’t get it open, so they left.  The chief remained inside to see if they’d return, for he wanted to catch them in the building where there could be no doubt of their guilt.

      About forty minutes later, Special Officer Herbert Moore was walking a post in Valley Falls near the Central Falls city line when he encountered two men attempting to break into a store, but not the one the chief was located in.  This was an era before automobiles and police radios, and in 1901 even telephones were uncommon.  If an officer encountered trouble, he was generally on his own.  

     As Moore approached, one of the men pulled a gun and started shooting.  The officer returned fire, sending six rounds in the direction of his attacker, but missed.  Then a bullet struck Moore just above his right hip and knocked him off his feet.  The pain was intense.  The slug had torn through his lower intestines and lodged next to his backbone.  As the wounded officer lay in the street his assailants left him for dead.

     Officer Burlingame had been patrolling nearby, and when he heard the shots came running to Moore’s aid.  After assessing the wound, he helped Moore to his feet and led him down Broad Street towards the Town Hall where police headquarters was then located.  Along the way they encountered Maurice Mountain, a street car conductor for the Cumberland Electric Railway who was on his way home.  Burlingame apprised him of the situation and told him to go to for a doctor.  As Mountain ran down the darkened street he inadvertently encountered the gunmen, who likely mistook his conductor’s uniform for a policeman’s.  Without a word, they fired three shots at the Good Samaritan, striking him in the cheek, neck, and right shoulder.  Although wounded, Mountain managed to escape by running towards the relative protection of a shack near the Valley Falls railroad crossing.   

     Officer Moore’s wound was serious, and after being treated at the police station he was transferred by horse-drawn ambulance to Rhode Island Hospital where he succumbed on the 27th.  Conductor Mountain was more fortunate, and was sent home to recuperate.   

     One odd fact related to this story is the prophetic dream had by Officer Joseph Whipple of the Central Falls police about a week before, which was reported in the (Woonsocket) Evening Call on April 25, 1901.  It said in part, “In the dream he heard a shot, investigated, found that a Valley Falls store had been burglarized and an officer and a man shot.”  Whipple had told fellow officers about his premonition, but they didn’t take it seriously.  On the night of the shootings, he was on patrol near the Central Falls – Cumberland line, and when he investigated the sounds of gunfire he found the situation was just as he had seen it in his dream!     

     Within hours of the shootings, Chief Donahue and Officer Burlingame arrested a suspect, a 25-year-old Pawtucket man well known to police who went by different names.  The man claimed he’d been home asleep at the time of the gunfire, but his father denied this and said his son didn’t come home until daylight.  With his criminal record and no alibi, the suspect was brought before a judge who ordered him held on $5000 bail, and remanded him to the state jail in Cranston.  Chief Donahue admitted to the press that the case against the arrestee was circumstantial, but it was hoped that if he hadn’t taken part in the shootings that he might know who did.  The prisoner denied any and all knowledge of the crimes, and on May 6th he was released for lack of evidence.     

     In the ensuing weeks police continued their investigation, but nothing new was learned.  Then weeks turned to months, and months turned to years, and the case faded into history.    

    Then, ten years later, a possible solution to the mystery was put forth.  In the summer of 1911 two men from Cumberland, both brothers, were convicted of various crimes in Massachusetts and given long prison sentences to serve at the Charlestown State Prison.  Officer Burlingame, now Chief Burlingame, was summoned to Fitchburg, Massachusetts, to give testimony in one of the cases because one the men was a suspect in the shooting of Officer Moore.  

     On August 30, 1911, the (Woonsocket) Evening Call reported that an unnamed prison inmate serving time in Cranston had given an affidavit “to the effect that one of the brothers had told him that he was the one who shot Moore.”   However, suspecting someone of a crime and proving it can be two different things, especially when the only evidence is hearsay from a convicted criminal.  The article ended with the hope that further evidence would be gathered to finally bring those responsible to justice. Unfortunately, history has shown that nobody was ever charged with Officer Moore’s murder.     

     Herbert Daniel Eaton Moore was born in Kittery, Maine, August 2, 1871, and was 30-years-old at the time of his death.  He was survived by his wife, three children, and a brother.       

Officer Herbert Moore’s Grave
Moshassuck Cemetery
Central Falls, R. I.

     Moore was appointed a special officer to the Cumberland Police in 1899.  In the early days of Rhode Island law enforcement, many cities and towns employed “special officers” to supplement the often small full-time force.  In some cases, there might be more “specials” than “regulars” on a department’s roster.  “Special officers” carried the same police powers as “regular” officers, (And took the same risks.) but only worked when needed.  In the case of Officer Moore, he was filling in for the regular beat officer who had the night off.  Many Rhode Island police departments continued to utilize “special officers” into the 1980s. 

     In Washington D.C. there is the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial.  Inscribed on it are the names of more than 20,000 United States law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty since the earliest days of our nation’s founding. (Presently there are 46 names from Rhode Island.) 

     From time to time, forgotten incidents such as the one involving Officer Moore come to light, and until quite recently, the Cumberland Police Department was unaware of his death in the line of duty.  As of this writing, efforts are underway to have his name added to the national memorial.     

—Officer Moore’s name has since been added. J.I.








Pawtucket Police

Click on image to enlarge.

Johnston, R. I., Police Dept.

Photo taken on Route 44 near Susan Drive.

Click on image to enlarge.

Johnston R. I. Police – 1983


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