The Boston Police Department was formally founded in May 1854, at which point both the night watch and Day Police were disbanded.
The rattle was a noise-making device used for calling for assistance.
The Day Police operated under the city marshal and had six appointed officers.
This organization would eventually lead to the establishment of the modern-day Boston Police Department.
In 1838, a bill passed in the General Court that allowed the city to appoint police officers, paving the way for the creation of a formal police department.
The Boston Police Department (BPD), dating back to 1838, holds the primary responsibility for law enforcement and investigation within the city of Boston, Massachusetts. The BPD is also the 20th largest law enforcement agency in the country and the 3rd largest in New England behind the Massachusetts State Police (2,300 officers) and the Massachusetts Department of Correction (4,000 officers).
In 1703, pay in the sum of 35 shillings a month was set for members of the night watch.
In 1796, the watch was reorganized, and the watchmen carried a badge of office, a rattle, and a six-foot pole, which was painted blue and white with a hook on one end and a bill on the other.
The hook was used to grab fleeing criminals, and the rounded "bill" was used as a weapon.
On November 3, 1851, the first Irish born Boston Police officer, Bernard "Barney" Mc Ginniskin, was appointed. The Boston Pilot wrote, "He is the first Irishman that ever carried the stick of a policeman anywhere in this country, and meetings, even Faneuil Hall meetings, have been held to protect against the appointment." At the time, the police salary of .00 a day for the morning and afternoon beat and .20 for the night watch was nearly twice as high as the wages of laborers.