26th President. Typed letter signed (TLS) “Theodore Roosevelt” as President of the Police Department of New York City, August 25, 1895, 8×10, uncommon stationery, in full:
My autograph is a rather queer one I fear; but it is a great pleasure to send it to you.
With original Commissioner’s Office Police Department envelope tipped to bottom margin. Creased from prior folding, some staining.
Roosevelt became president of the board of the New York City Police Commissioners for two years in 1895 and radically reformed the police force. The New York Police Department (NYPD) was reputed as one of the most corrupt in America; the NYPD’s history division records that Roosevelt was “an iron-willed leader of unimpeachable honesty, (who) brought a reforming zeal to the New York City Police Commission in 1895.” Roosevelt implemented regular inspections of firearms and annual physical exams; he appointed 1,600 recruits based on their physical and mental qualifications, regardless of political affiliation, established Meritorious Service Medals and closed corrupt police hostelries. During his tenure, a Municipal Lodging House was established by the Board of Charities, and Roosevelt required officers to register with the Board; he also had telephones installed in station houses.