New York Troopers - History
Preserving the Past for Those Who Follow
 
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NEW YORK STATE POLICE SCHOOL

Authorized under Chapter 176, Part 2 of the Laws of 1921, the first state police school- sessions were held at the Troy, N.Y., Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA). These accommodations were found to be inadequate and were moved to the 105th Regiment Armory, Troy, N.Y., after the second year. This location proved invaluable because of its excellent pistol and rifle range and spacious rooms. (1921 NYSP Annual Reports)

Troopers were constantly brought up to speed on new changes and methods. From 1917 to 1921, daily classes were held for troopers in reserve at the barracks. In addition to troopers, railroad police, police chiefs and other state police agencies attended the school at no cost to their department.

Recognized as the first certified police school in the nation, the New York State School for Police held its first sessions from November 1 to 30, 1921. Courses given were evaluated and approved by the New York State Board of Regents. Fifty-three troopers graduated from the first session and were awarded a state certificate as a professional policeman.

The first class of graduates had no practical police experience and failed to meet expectations when placed in their assigned duty stations. Major Chandler immediately implemented a policy where all attendees at the school had to first have one year of field experience prior to attending classes. The school was under the direction of Lieutenant Albert B. Moore, a trooper and outstanding instructor. He gathered an excellent staff from the Attorney General’s Office, District Attorneys and other professionals who were willing to donate their time. Officers from any police agency within the state were eligible to attend the school.

In 1922, the school published a training textbook “The Policeman’s Art” through Funk & Wagnall’s of New York City. This text was sold nationwide with proceeds going to maintain the school. In 1925, sessions were increased from four to six weeks and curriculum increased with classes held during January and February.

Newly hired probationary troopers were on the road for several months prior to attending classes at the police school. Successful completion of courses given at the Academy was required to become a trooper. (NYSP Annual Reports 1922)

During 1930, Inspector Albert E. Moore was sent to Europe for three months to study investigative methods and systems in use by Scotland Yard and the French Surete. The purpose was to study these techniques, methods and reporting systems for possible use and improvement of courses taught at the State Police School.

1930 also saw the system of statewide bulletins initiated through the Police Academy. This method provided uniformity and was distributed to police agencies throughout the state providing the most recent information pertaining to statutes, amendments to existing laws, court decisions and police procedure. This distribution of information was vastly improved and quickly provided through the new teletype system installed in 1931.  (NYSP Annual Reports – 1930 & 1932)

In 1932, Inspector Moore was assigned to the State of Virginia for one week where he helped inaugurate a statewide system of police training schools. Moore trained instructors and provided them with an initial curriculum. The entire curriculum provided was adopted and approved by the Virginia State Police and used statewide.

In 1932, the service of the New York State School for Police was also requested by the University of Chicago to help formulate a national police-training program.

The January 4, 1937 class was the first session where students were required to enter a gas filled building as part of their training in tear gas. The theory was that the experience would take away any fears they might have. In March 1937, a one-week class was held for troopers assigned to the Bureau of Criminal Investigation and in April 1937, a one-week session was given in traffic investigations. 

The NYS Police School was closed from 1941 until the end of WW II.  Of the 305 troopers who left for military service, only 110 returned to the ranks after the war. The returnees had to be re-trained with the school re-opened in August 1945. In addition, all veteran troopers that had not attended basic school in the previous 5 years were required to participate in a two-week refresher course. It is known today as “In Service” School. The basic school for recruits was re-instituted and course extended to six weeks.

1955 STATE POLICE SCHOOL STAFF

Director- Inspector Everett C. Updike

Assistant Director - Inspector Martin F. Dillon

Executive Officer - Lieutenant George W. Ashley

Training Officer – Lieutenant Melvin Handville

Firearms Instructor  - Sergeant A. B. Jackman

NAME CHANGED

In February 1961, the New York State School for Police was changed to the New York State Police Academy. The graduation of the sixty-sixth session of the school ended classes held at Troy, N.Y. Temporary classes were held at Troop “G” barracks where classrooms and facilities were provided for 50 men. The State University at Oneonta accommodated two classes of 50 men each during the summer months.   

RECRUITS

Until 1961, new hired troopers were first assigned to a station where they were assigned menial maintenance duties, washed cars and did generally everything except police work until a school session was started. Classes at the Troopers Police School were held during winter months so several months would pass in some instances.

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