Police Motor Units
The History of Motorcycle Law Enforcement

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Ohio Highway Patrol


The History of the Ohio Highway Patrol “Flying Wheel”

 The responsibility for badge design fell into the hands of Harry Neal, who in turn assigned the task to Mr. Joseph Goldberg, an engineer in Neal's Safety Department. The badge design was partially inspired by a study of others, but the "Flying Wheel" was originally Goldberg's idea. Though he had difficulty selling the flying wheel to Neal (who jokingly asked if they were duck, chicken, or eagle wings), Goldberg had created our symbol. 

 

 The History of Ohio Highway Patrol Motorcycle Unit

Wednesday, November 15, 1933, was windy and bitter cold, with passing snow flurries. There had been talk of a formal graduation ceremony, but this idea was replaced with a simple swearing?in and inspection. Captain Black, addressing his new force one final time before departure, urged his men to "at all times remember that promotion of true safety and the welfare of the people of Ohio should inspire and motivate your work." With that, the 60 original patrolmen, now 54 patrolmen and six lieutenants, together with Captain Black took the oath of office from Common Pleas Judge J. F. Allyn of Ottawa County. Their 54 motorcycles and six Plymouth coaches were ready, as were the substations, and in the early afternoon the men broke camp.   For many, the trip to assigned substations was brutal, with the combination of weather and distance being almost unbearable. The story of Ptl. [later lieutenant] A. O. Smith gives a feel for Ohio State Highway Patrol History, 1933?1993 5 the trip. He was assigned to Sidney, a distance of approximately 125 miles. As he told a reporter several years later, it was ?3 degrees when he passed through Fremont, and he was for the trip. He was assigned to Sidney, a distance of approximately 125 miles. As he told a reporter several years later, it was ?3 degrees when he passed through Fremont, and he was forced to stop at every roadside stop and gas station to warm up. He tore up some newspapers and stuffed them into his uniform, and later bought a piece of cloth, cut holes in it, and wore it over his head (his cycle had no windshield or leg guards). For the last ten miles, he rode standing up and flexing his knees. But despite the hazardous journey, all 60 made it to their stations, and the Ohio State Highway Patrol was officially in operation.  

 Prior to the heavy wartime manpower losses, each post consisted of a corporal and average of five or six patrolmen. District headquarters were staffed by a lieutenant, three or four
sergeants, a corporal, and an average of nine patrolmen. Included in the district figures was a
"stolen car specialist," specially trained in identification work and fingerprinting. Radio division
units numbered 12 at Columbus and four at each district headquarters (except Cambridge
which had two.) By this time, cars out numbered motorcycles 142 to 100, with 16 of the 100
cycles actually assigned as training vehicles.

 

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

 

Photo provided by Ohio HIghway Patrol

Training 1937 Photo provided by Ward

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

Photo provided by Ohio HIghway Patrol

 

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

Photo provided by Ohio HIghway Patrol

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

 

Photo provided by Ward

 

Photo provided by Ward

Photo provided by Ward

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol

Arnold Schwartzenegger (Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol)

Photo provided by Ward

 

Photo provided by Ward

Photo provided by Ward

Photo provided by Ohio Highway Patrol 


Information and Photos provided by Ohio Highway Patrol