About the Memphis Police Department
In 1827, John J. Balch was appointed town constable. This
was the birth of the Memphis Police Department. Several years later, a town watch was created with two men paid $400 a year
to work the night watch. The first police station was constructed. It was a 12'
by 20' brick calaboose located at Main and Market, at a cost of $185. Rattles were purchased for the night watch.
Today, the Memphis Police Department is organized into four
large organizational entities: Special Operations; Uniform Patrol; Investigative Services; and, Administrative Services. The department employs over 2,700 people, including over 2,000 sworn officers (1400
of the sworn officers are police officers). In 2005, the police officers working in uniform handled more than 817,000 calls