Elmhurst Police Department FOP Lodge 81


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Elmhurst Police Department, 125 E. First St., Elmhurst, IL  60126.  Telephone (630) 530-3050.

Brief History of the Fraternal Order of Police

In 1915, the life of a policeman was bleak.  In many communities they were forced to work 12-hour days, 365 days a year.  Police officers didn’t like it, but there was little they could do to change their working conditions.  There were no organizations to make their voices heard; no other means to make their grievances known.

This soon changed, thanks to the courage and wisdom of two Pittsburgh police officers.  Martin Toole and Delbert Nagle knew they must first organize police officers, like other labor interests, if they were to be successful in making life better for themselves and their fellow police officers.  They and 21 others “who were willing to take a chance” met on May 14th, 1915, and held the meeting of the F.O.P.  They formed Fort Pitt Lodge #1.  They decided on this name due to the anti-union sentiment of the time.  However, there was no mistaking their intentions.  As they told their city mayor, Joe Armstrong, the FOP would be the means “to bring our issues and concerns before the mayor or city council and have many things adjusted that we are unable to present in any other way, we could get many things through your legislature that our council will not, or cannot give”.

And so it began, a tradition of police officers representing police officers.  The Fraternal Order of Police was given life by two dedicated police officers determined to better their profession and those who choose to protect and serve our communities, our states, and our country.  That was the beginning of the FOP having a strong influence in legislatures in various states around the country, their considerate and charitable efforts on behalf of the communities they served, officers in need, and for the FOP’s efforts at increasing the public confidence toward the police.

From that small beginning, the FOP began growing steadily.  In 1917, the idea of a National Organization of police officers came about.  Today, the tradition that was first envisioned 90 years ago lives on with more than 2000-plus local lodges and more than 300,000 police officer members in the United States.  The FOP is the largest professional organization in the country.

The FOP continues to grow, because we have been true to the tradition and continued to build on it.  The FOP members are proud professionals working on behalf of law enforcement officers of all ranks and levels of  government.