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United States Marshals Office - History

United States Marshals Office - History

United States Marshals Office - part of the Department of Justice. The oldest federal law enforcement agency in the United States, it creates a link between the executive and judicial branches of government. Created in 1789, it consists of marshals, appointed by the President, and their support staff of about 3,500 deputy marshals and administrative employees in all federal judicial districts. The US Marshals Service: provides support and protection for federal courts, including security for judicial facilities, judges and other trial participants; apprehends federal fugitives; operates the Federal Witness Protection Program to protect government witnesses; holds thousands of federal prisoners annually and transports them; executes court orders and arrest warrants; seizes, manages and sells property from drug traffickers and other criminals; and sends its Special Operations Group to respond to civil disturbances, terrorist incidents and other emergency crises.

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Records of the U.S. Marshals Service

Established: The position of U.S. Marshal was established by Section 27 of the Judiciary Act of 1789 (1 Stat. 87), September 24, 1789, authorizing the appointment of one Marshal for each Federal judicial district. The Executive Office for United States Marshals (EOUSM) was the first organization to supervise U.S. Marshals nationwide. EOUSM was established, effective December 17, 1956, by announcement of Deputy Attorney General William P. Rogers, November 30, 1956. It functioned under the Office of the Deputy Attorney General until November 28, 1967, when it was transferred to the Administrative Division by DOJ Order 386-67, same date. It continued in that division until May 12, 1969, when it was superseded by the Office of the Director, United States Marshals Service. The United States Marshals Service was established in the Department of Justice by DOJ Order 415-69, May 12, 1969. USMS records include those of the Office of the Director, USMS, and those of USMS district and subdistrict offices located in the various Federal judicial districts.

Functions: Each U.S. Marshal is appointed by the President with the advice and consent of the Senate. The duties of each U.S. Marshal and, by delegation, of each deputy U.S. Marshal, include protecting the Federal court(s) in their judicial district, together with court officials and trial participants investigating and apprehending fugitives from Federal justice ensuring the safety of endangered Government witnesses maintaining custody of, and transporting, Federal prisoners executing court orders and arrest warrants managing, and disposing of, property forfeited to the Government by drug traffickers and other criminals and responding to such emergency situations as civil disturbances and terrorist incidents.

Related Records:
Records of United States Attorneys, RG 118 (formerly Records of United States Attorneys and Marshals, RG 118).
Records of District Courts of the United States, RG 21.
General Records of the Department of Justice, RG 60.

527.2 Records of U.S. Marshals, Southern Judicial District of Alabama

Textual Records (in Atlanta): Letters sent, 1885-87. Subject files, 1907-23.

527.3 Records of U.S. Marshals, Arizona Judicial District

Textual Records (in Los Angeles): Letters sent, 1901-04. Correspondence relating to Indian cases, 1917-23. Appointments and oaths of U.S. Marshals and Deputy Marshals, 1875-1912.

527.4 Records of U.S. Marshals, Northern Judicial District of California

Textual Records (in San Francisco): Correspondence relating to significant cases, 1874-1919.

527.5 Records of U.S. Marshals, Southern Judicial District of Florida

Textual Records (in Atlanta): Records of the Deputy U.S. Marshal, Key West Division, including letters sent, 1921-26 letters received, 1907-26 and fiscal records consisting of a cash book, 1890-1904, and an expense ledger, 1921-27.

527.6 Records of U.S. Marshals, Southern Judicial District of Indiana

Textual Records (in Chicago): Letters sent, 1897-1908. Letters received, 1893-1910. Correspondence relating to Chinese immigration cases, 1905-15.

527.7 Records of U.S. Marshals, Kansas Judicial District

Textual Records (in Kansas City): Records of U.S. Marshals, Kansas Judicial District, including records of appointment, 1867- 94 docket books, 1874-1908 and records (15 ft.) concerning issuances to German aliens of residency, transit, and employment permits, 1917-18. Records of U.S. Marshals, First Division, Kansas Judicial District, including letters sent, 1901-12 letters received, 1864-1918 (with gaps) and docket books, 1874- 88.

527.8 Records of U.S. Marshals, Western Judicial District of Missouri

Textual Records (in Kansas City): Expenditure records, 1879-83.

527.9 Records of U.S. Marshals, Nevada Judicial District

Textual Records (in Los Angeles): Daily dairies, 1939-50.

527.10 Records of U.S. Marshals, Southern Judicial District of New York
1845-52, 1868

Textual Records (in New York): Letters received, 1845-48, 1868. Orders received, 1848-52.

527.11 Records of U.S. Marshals, South Dakota Judicial District

Textual Records (in Kansas City): Letters sent, 1893-1906.

527.12 Records of U.S. Marshals, Wyoming Judicial District

Textual Records (in Denver): Abstracts of compensation to witnesses, petit jurors, and grand jurors, 1875. U.S. Marshal's civil docket, 1878-93, and criminal docket, 1879-93. Marshal's ledgers, 1887-99. Record of public funds, 1890-96. Description and history of convicts in the U.S. penitentiary of Laramie City, Wyoming, 1873-92. Register of writs, 1879-96.

527.13 Records of U.S. Marshals, United States Court for China

Textual Records: Case files relating to investigations involving U.S. citizens in China, 1935-41.

Bibliographic note: Web version based on Guide to Federal Records in the National Archives of the United States. Compiled by Robert B. Matchette et al. Washington, DC: National Archives and Records Administration, 1995.
3 volumes, 2428 pages.

This Web version is updated from time to time to include records processed since 1995.

This page was last reviewed on August 15, 2016.
Contact us with questions or comments.


The office of the Attorney General was established by the Judiciary Act of 1789 as a part-time job for one person, but grew with the bureaucracy. At one time, the Attorney General gave legal advice to the U.S. Congress, as well as the President however, in 1819, the Attorney General began advising Congress alone to ensure a manageable workload. [11] Until March 3, 1853, the salary of the Attorney General was set by statute at less than the amount paid to other Cabinet members. Early attorneys general supplemented their salaries by running private law practices, often arguing cases before the courts as attorneys for paying litigants. [12]

Following unsuccessful efforts in 1830 and 1846 to make Attorney General a full-time job, [13] in 1867, the U.S. House Committee on the Judiciary, led by Congressman William Lawrence, conducted an inquiry into the creation of a "law department" headed by the Attorney General and also composed of the various department solicitors and United States attorneys. On February 19, 1868, Lawrence introduced a bill in Congress to create the Department of Justice. President Ulysses S. Grant signed the bill into law on June 22, 1870. [14]

Grant appointed Amos T. Akerman as Attorney General and Benjamin H. Bristow as America's first solicitor general the same week that Congress created the Department of Justice. The Department's immediate function was to preserve civil rights. It set about fighting against domestic terrorist groups who had been using both violence and litigation to oppose the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments to the Constitution. [15]

Both Akerman and Bristow used the Department of Justice to vigorously prosecute Ku Klux Klan members in the early 1870s. In the first few years of Grant's first term in office, there were 1000 indictments against Klan members with over 550 convictions from the Department of Justice. By 1871, there were 3000 indictments and 600 convictions with most only serving brief sentences while the ringleaders were imprisoned for up to five years in the federal penitentiary in Albany, New York. The result was a dramatic decrease in violence in the South. Akerman gave credit to Grant and told a friend that no one was "better" or "stronger" than Grant when it came to prosecuting terrorists. [16] George H. Williams, who succeeded Akerman in December 1871, continued to prosecute the Klan throughout 1872 until the spring of 1873, during Grant's second term in office. [17] Williams then placed a moratorium on Klan prosecutions partially because the Justice Department, inundated by cases involving the Klan, did not have the manpower to continue prosecutions. [17]

The "Act to Establish the Department of Justice" drastically increased the Attorney General's responsibilities to include the supervision of all United States attorneys, formerly under the Department of the Interior, the prosecution of all federal crimes, and the representation of the United States in all court actions, barring the use of private attorneys by the federal government. [18] The law also created the office of Solicitor General to supervise and conduct government litigation in the Supreme Court of the United States. [19]

With the passage of the Interstate Commerce Act in 1887, the federal government took on some law enforcement responsibilities, and the Department of Justice was tasked with performing these. [20]

In 1884, control of federal prisons was transferred to the new department, from the Department of Interior. New facilities were built, including the penitentiary at Leavenworth in 1895, and a facility for women located in West Virginia, at Alderson was established in 1924. [21]

In 1933, President Franklin D. Roosevelt issued an executive order which gave the Department of Justice responsibility for the "functions of prosecuting in the courts of the United States claims and demands by, and offsenses [sic] against, the Government of the United States, and of defending claims and demands against the Government, and of supervising the work of United States attorneys, marshals, and clerks in connection therewith, now exercised by any agency or officer. " [22]

The U.S. Department of Justice building was completed in 1935 from a design by Milton Bennett Medary. Upon Medary's death in 1929, the other partners of his Philadelphia firm Zantzinger, Borie and Medary took over the project. On a lot bordered by Constitution and Pennsylvania Avenues and Ninth and Tenth Streets, Northwest, it holds over 1,000,000 square feet (93,000 m 2 ) of space. The sculptor C. Paul Jennewein served as overall design consultant for the entire building, contributing more than 50 separate sculptural elements inside and outside. [ citation needed ]

Various efforts, none entirely successful, have been made to determine the original intended meaning of the Latin motto appearing on the Department of Justice seal, Qui Pro Domina Justitia Sequitur (literally "Who For Lady Justice Strives"). It is not even known exactly when the original version of the DOJ seal itself was adopted, or when the motto first appeared on the seal. The most authoritative opinion of the DOJ suggests that the motto refers to the Attorney General (and thus, by extension, to the Department of Justice) "who prosecutes on behalf of justice (or the Lady Justice)". [23]

Legends of America

In the late 19th century Indian Territory (Oklahoma) was considered the most violent of the American territories, as it served as home to hundreds of outlaws from around the country. Accused of murder, rape, robbery, arson, adultery, bribery, and numerous other crimes, outlaws initially found a safe haven in Indian Territory, which was without law enforcement with the exception of the Indian Nations’ police forces, who had no jurisdiction over the many criminals who had taken flight from other states.

That would change, however, when Judge Isaac Parker was appointed to the Western Judicial District of Arkansas, which included Indian Territory. Eventually, Parker would command about 200 deputy marshals to “clean up” the lawless territory, but that would take years as the deputies struggled to cover some 74,000 square miles in their search for hundreds of wanted fugitives.

The occupation of a U.S. Deputy Marshal courted constant danger, so much so that between 1872 and 1896, over 100 deputies died enforcing the law throughout the territory.

Into this dangerous midst, a number of men made names for themselves — men such as Heck Thomas, Bass Reeves, Bill Tilghman, Chris Madsen, and dozens of others. More quietly, a few other deputies also made names for themselves, because they were women.

One of these brave women was F.M. Miller, who was appointed as a U.S. Deputy Marshal out of the federal court at Paris, Texas in 1891. At the time she was commissioned, she was the only female deputy known to work in Indian Territory. History makes several mentions of her serving as a guard at the federal jail at Guthrie, Oklahoma under fellow U.S. Deputy Marshall Ben Campbell. She was also known to have accompanied Campbell on all his trips.

During her tenure, she was mentioned in several newspaper articles including the Fort Smith Elevator on November 6, 1891, that described here as: “a dashing brunette of charming manners.” The article continued by stating:

“The woman carries a pistol buckled around her and has a Winchester strapped to her saddle. She is an expert shot and a superb horsewoman, and brave to the verge of recklessness. It is said that she aspires to win a name equal to that of Belle Starr, differing from her by exerting herself to run down criminals and in the enforcement of the law.”

Another article appeared a couple of weeks later in the Muskogee Phoenix on November 19, 1891, which said that she had the reputation of being a fearless and efficient officer and had locked up more than a few offenders. The article continued:

“Miss Miller is a young woman of prepossessing appearance, wears a cowboy hat and is always adorned with a pistol belt full of cartridges and a dangerous-looking Colt pistol which she knows how to use. She has been in Muskogee for a few days, having come here with Deputy Marshal Cantrel, a guard with some prisoners brought from Talihina. Regarding Miss. Miller’s unique position as Deputy U.S. Marshal, another newspaper commented, “Hopefully in the future, there will be more information on this colorful peace officer.”

Another woman in Indian Territory who showed bravery and skill in her position as a U.S. Deputy Marshal was a young woman named Ada Curnutt. The daughter of a Methodist minister, Ada Curnutt moved to the Oklahoma Territory with her sister and brother-in-law shortly after it opened for settlers. The 20-year-old soon found work as the Clerk of the District Court in Norman, Oklahoma and as a Deputy Marshal to U.S. Marshal William Grimes.

Her most famous arrest occurred in March 1893 when she received a telegram from Grimes, instructing her to send a deputy to Oklahoma City to bring in two notorious outlaws named Reagan and Dolezal who were wanted for forgery. However, all the other deputies were out in the field so Curnutt stepped up to the responsibility. She quickly boarded a train for Oklahoma City and upon her arrival asked around for information on the fugitives. She soon discovered that the two men were in a saloon and quickly made her way there. Upon her arrival, she asked a man on the street to go in and tell them that a lady needed to see them outside.

When the two emerged, Ada read the warrants to them and stated that they were under arrest. Heavily armed, the two men laughed at the young woman and thinking it was a joke, allowed her to place handcuffs over their wrists. When the captives began to realize that the joke was on them, Curnutt announced to the crowd gathered around them that she was prepared to deputize every man to aide her, if needed. However, it was not necessary and she escorted them to the train station and telegraphed the marshal’s office in Guthrie that she was bringing them in. She was 24-years-old at the time. The two forgers were soon tried and convicted.

“Like all deputies of her era, she had to be extremely tough and ready to face a wide range of situations,” the U.S. Marshals Service wrote of Curnutt.

U.S. Marshal Canada H. Thompson, who served from 1897 to 1902 as the marshal of Oklahoma Territory also had two female deputy marshals. Though they most often worked in the office, they also did fieldwork, including serving writs and warrants and making arrests. These two women were S.M. Burche and Mamie Fossett.

Guthrie, Oklahoma Courthouse

One newspaper described the women in 1898:

Female Officers of the Law – Two Oklahoma Girls Are United States Deputy Marshals

It is not infrequent these days for an officer of the law to name a woman as a deputy. But she is nearly always what is known as an office deputy. She performs mere clerical duties and never takes to the field. But Oklahoma has set the pace. United States Marshal C. H. Thompson, of Guthrie, has appointed two women as deputies for fieldwork.

That a woman should choose the vocation of professional thief-taker in the most civilized portion of the land would be strange enough. It is infinitely more so when she chooses field duty on the worst territory in the Union. Criminals in Oklahoma and in Indian Territory, the district where these two girls – for they are maidens – must operate, are of the most desperate and dangerous class. More lives are lost among Federal officers in a year than in all the rest of the nation together. So it would seem that these girls possess metal of exceptional kind to willingly undertake such duties.

The young women are Miss S. M. Burche and Miss Mamie Fossett. They are of that adventurous class of females who invaded the newly opened territory in search of homesteads. They are young, fairly good-looking, well-educated, fearless and independent. Their duties are by no means confined to keeping Marshal Thompson’s books. When they took the oath of office and assumed their duties it was with distinct understanding that they would serve the Government just as would any other deputy marshal. They were to take the field, serve writs and warrants and make arrests just as any rude man might be called on to do. And they have been doing this with exceptional success.

A second article also described the two women:

Miss Mamie Fossett and Miss S. M. Burche Are Deputy United States Marshals in Oklahoma—They Perform Field Work as Bravely as Men

Miss S. M. Burche and Miss Mamie Fossett are the first women to do active fieldwork as United States deputy marshals. They are young, good looking, educated and full of the Wild West spirit, that is, they are fearless, adventurous, energetic and self-reliant. They were appointed by United States Marshal C. H. Thompson, with the understanding that they should not be merely “office” deputies, but should serve writs and make arrests If need be. Their conduct has fully warranted the trust imposed upon them.

Their first work was done in connection with an Indian Territory murder case. They were ordered to go to the country of the Sacs and Foxes and to bring in some unruly witnesses—an extremely difficult and dangerous task. They had the writs, with the names and addresses of the men wanted. They are brave as any man, and expert with rifle or pistol. They travel together, and can put up a good fight If it comes to that. Few men would undertake to disturb them. None would make much of a success. They are splendid riders, inured to fatigue and exposure, and prefer active outdoor life to that usually supposed to attract the feminine intellect.

In order to accomplish their mission they were forced to travel through one of the worst districts on earth. Many a deputy has gone down before the fire of some desperado in those wilds. Many a hot, running fight of miles has left a trail of blood on the sandy hills and broken vales.

They suffered all the privations incident to their vocation, but the bill of expenses was the last thing they thought of. They shot game and did their own cooking while away. They kept down expenses by this and other means, and had a good time of it while on their trip. Their entire trip was five days’ camping. They did not go to houses, if they had the opportunity to do so, for the habitations scattered in that region are not very desirable at best.

They got the witnesses and have just returned from the trip, and see no reason why they should be credited with having done anything unusual. They say they are ready to go after any man wanted for any kind of crime. Everybody who knows them corroborates this declaration.

Though these brave ladies were not the only ones who served as early deputy marshals, they are remembered and recognized for their tenacity and courage in what was then very much a “Man’s World”, in extremely dangerous territory.

Legends of America

U.S. Deputy Marshals at Fort Smith, Arkansas, 1892.

Invoking an image of weathered cowboys riding hard on the range, chasing outlaws in a running gunfight, are the U.S. Marshals of the Old West. And while those images were “real,” especially with many of the brave men working in Indian Territory under the jurisdiction of “Hanging Judge” Isaac Parker, or in the fledgling western territories of Arizona, New Mexico, Montana, Wyoming and others many may not know that the U.S. Marshal Service is more than 200 years old.

The U.S. Marshal Service was created by the first Congress in the Judiciary Act of 1789, the same legislation that established the federal judicial system. When George Washington set up his first administration and the first Congress began passing laws, both quickly discovered an inconvenient gap – there was no agency established to represent the federal government’s interests at the local level. Part of the problem was solved by creating specialized agencies, such as customs and revenue collectors, to levy the tariffs and taxes, but there were numerous other jobs that needed to be done.

Many of these tasks fell to the U.S. Marshal Service. Given extensive authority to support federal courts, Congress, or the president, these marshals and their deputies have served subpoenas, warrants, made arrests, and handled prisoners for more than two centuries.

And though these are the most well-known of their tasks, they had numerous others as well, including the disbursement of money. The Marshals paid the fees and expenses of the court clerks, U.S. Attorneys, jurors, and witnesses. They rented the courtrooms and jail space and hired the bailiffs, criers, and janitors. They made sure the prisoners were present, the jurors were available, and the witnesses were on time.

But this was only a part of what the Marshals did. The Marshals have also taken the responsibility for a number of other tasks over the years, such as taking the national census through 1870, distributing Presidential proclamations, registering enemy aliens in times of war, capturing fugitive slaves, and protecting the American borders.

Their motto is “Justice, Integrity, and Service,” and through the years, their heroics in the face of lawlessness have often become famous, especially in the days of the Old West, which has so often been portrayed in popular films, and invoking the many images we have of these courageous men today.

In the second half of the 19th century, the U.S. Marshals became synonymous with the “Wild West” as they made their mark on history in the many lawless frontier towns. In many of these places, the marshals were the only kind of law that was available, and knowing this, numerous outlaws made their livelihoods in these fledgling towns that had not yet become structured enough to provide for their own authorities. Here, in “wicked” places like Deadwood South Dakota Tombstone, Arizona and the plains of Indian Territory, U.S. Deputy Marshals became famous as they pursued such notorious outlaws as Billy the Kid in New Mexico Dalton Gang, Belle Starr, and the Rufus Buck Gang in Indian Territory Jesse James in the Midwest and Butch Cassidy’s Wild Bunch in Wyoming and hundreds of others.

Though popular western films generally showed these fearless men as forming a posse, pinning on their silver star-shaped badges, and pursuing the outlaws in a running gunfight, that the marshals always won, this was in truth, not the norm. In fact, in Indian Territory (which later became Oklahoma), 103 deputies were killed between 1872 and 1896, roughly a quarter of the number slain throughout the marshals’ history. The territory, controlled by Judge Isaac Parker in Fort Smith, Arkansas, was described by a Fort Smith newspaper as the “rendezvous of the vile and wicked from everywhere.” Some of the true courageous men who made names for themselves here were Heck Thomas, Bass Reeves, Bill Tilghman, Chris Madsen and dozens of others.

In other areas of the west, more men who made names for themselves included Seth Bullock in South Dakota Bat Masterson in Kansas Joseph Meek in Oregon William Wheeler in Montana and again, dozens of others. Two of the most recognizable men who served as U.S. Deputy Marshals were Wyatt Earp and Wild Bill Hickok. However, they gained their notoriety primarily through their own exaggerations and film depictions, rather than the courageous acts shown by many more deputy marshals.

Once the Wild West was tamed, the U.S. Marshal service began to suffer in the 20th century as their star faded and the FBI flourished. Though they protected the home front during World War I and were heavily involved in enforcing Prohibition laws, they had essentially lost their “specialty,” and by the 1950s found themselves acting as bailiffs for the federal courts and requesting background checks. In the 1960s, their importance again rose as they enforced court-ordered racial desegregation and the Federal Witness Security Program which was established in the 1970s.

Today, the Marshal Service still has responsibility to enforce federal laws and orders issued by the court, as well as prevention of civil disturbances, continued protection of federal witnesses, terrorist events, hostage situations, and numerous other duties directed by the Department of Justice, such as assisting in airport security after the terrible attack in New York on September 11, 2001. Current Deputy Marshals are required to carry firearms and to become proficient in the latest electronic communications equipment and security devices. Their work continues to hold the constant threat of violence involving personal risk to the many men and women who pledge to protect the justice system.

Over the years, some 400 marshals have been killed in the line of duty. Their famous five-sided star is the oldest emblem of federal law enforcement in our country.

To celebrate their courage and bravery and provide information on the service’s rich history, fundraising efforts are currently underway for the U.S. Marshals Service National Museum, which will be established in Fort Smith, Arkansas.

United States Marshals Office - History

United States Marshal History

The word "Marshal" often brings images of the Wild West when America's frontier was stretching to the Pacific and Law and Order was the fastest gun in town. Colorful tales of Wyatt Earp set the image of Western Marshals in our mind.

It comes as a surprise to many to find the United States Marshals and their deputies are alive and flourishing in the 20th century as modern professional law enforcement officers functioning as officers of the Federal Courts and agents of the Department of Justice.

When Congress passed the first Judiciary Act of 1789, the U.S. Senate confirmed President George Washington's appointment of the original thirteen U.S. Marshals.

Today, those first thirteen have grown to 95 marshals who are assisted by some 2,500 deputies and 1,500 administrative personnel throughout the United States and its possessions. While the Marshals remain political appointments of the President with the advice and consent of the Senate, the Deputy U.S. Marshals are hired under Civil Service Competitive examination.

Today, Marshals and Deputies lead a life every bit as challenging, exciting and dangerous as their early counterparts. They perform a wide range of Federal Law Enforcement duties designed to carry out their statutory requirements. Among the diverse responsibilities they perform are the serving of criminal and civil process and warrants of arrest movement of federal prisoners protection of witnesses to activities of organized crime serving and disposing of property under court orders security of federal court facilities, judges and jurors and the prevention of civil disturbances or restoration of order in riot or mob violence situations. These and other special law enforcement duties are performed as directed by order of the court or the Department of justice.

Deputy Marshals are required to carry firearms and to become proficient in the latest electronic communications equipment and security devices. Their work often involves irregular hours, the constant threat of violence involving personal risk, exposure to severe conditions, considerable travel and arduous physical exertion. The performance of these difficult, but challenging duties always requires the highest standards of Ethical conduct and dedication to the United States Marshals Service and the profession of law enforcement.


The United States Marshal is appointed by the President of the United States and approved by the U.S. Senate for a period of 4 years. He is required to live in his District, with the exception of the U.S. Marshal for the District of Columbia and U.S. Marshal for the District of Columbia Superior Court the two Marshals can live in the surrounding districts.

The Marshals for Guam, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands are appointed by the United States Attorney General for a period of 6 years. There are currently 95 U.S. Marshals.

If something happens to the U.S. Marshal, then the United States Attorney General appoints his replacement until a new Marshal can be appointed by the President and approved by the U. S. Senate.


Each District has a Chief Deputy U.S. Marshal some Districts have more than one. They are in charge of different details or have positions at the Training Academy, EPIC and Interpol. They function as Operations Officers for the District. They are the second one in the chain of command.


Supervising Deputy U.S. Marshals are promoted thru the ranks. They are assigned to different Districts. The Districts are required to have 4 or more Deputies in an office before they have one Supervisor. Their duties are to make sure the Operational side and the Administrative side of the office get the work coordinated. They also assign the Deputies there work.

The current title Deputy U.S. Marshal has been used throughout the years from 1789 to present. In about 1956 the titles of Office Deputy, Fee Deputy and Field Deputy became obsolete. The title Deputy U.S. Marshals became standard. The office Deputies that did steno work, civil process, criminal process and accounting were made Administrative personnel.

The other Deputies became regular Deputies, who transported prisoners, attended courts, served civil and criminal process, also served arrest warrants. In the early days Deputies did their own investigation on all types of crimes. In the modern days, Deputies do investigations on the following laws that are assigned to the U.S. Marshal Service, Escape , Parole, Probation, Failure to Appear and Bail Jumping. In Alaska Deputy U.S. Marshals were the only Law Enforcement and they did all investigations on all crimes and were also the Deputy Corners in the Districts. In the lower 48 Deputies were not the Deputy Corners.

At present there are two categories of Deputy U.S. Marshals.

1. Criminal Investigators (GS -1811)

2. Deputy U.S. Marshals (GS- 082)


D.E.O. (GS- 1802) is responsible for transporting prisoners / detainees by bus, car, van, etc. The D.E.O. conducts searches of the prisoners / detainees to insure that they are not caring prohibited property. The D.E.O. applies and / or removes restraints to include handcuffs and leg irons. Maintains order and discipline in the cellblock. Conducts surveillance via closed circuit television monitors. Controls access to cellblock area. Distributes food to prisoners / detainees. Request appropriate medical assistance in case of medical emergencies.


Office Deputy U.S. Marshals was a title that was used up to 1956 when it was discontinued by the Classification Act of 1949.

It was a title of the Deputy U.S. Marshal that was assigned to the District Office to perform Office Duties. He or she did the paper work and took the prisoners from jail to U.S. Court for hearings and trials.

This title is no longer used after 1956 .


They were appointed by the U.S. Marshal for the District that they were going to work in. They were assigned to the field. They lived away from the District Headquarters Office. Most of them worked out of their homes and the local Sheriffs offices in the Western states. They worked in the District serving Warrants Criminal, Civil process and transporting prisoners.

At one time when this title was used in the 1800's, Judge Parker had over 200 Field Deputy U.S. Marshals at one Time. They were paid very little money.

This title is no longer used.


When, in the opinion of the U.S. Marshal, public business requires it, he may appoint one or more Fee Deputies, subject to approval of the Attorney General, They hold office (unless sooner removed by the U.S. District Court for the District, or by the U.S. Attorney General) during the pleasure of the District U.S. Marshal. (See Act of March 4, 1911, 36 Stat. 1355)

Appointment of Fee Deputies should be immediately reported to the U.S. Attorney General. Such reports should specify:

(a) The facts as distinguished from conclusions constituting the reason for the Appointment .

(b) Name and age of employee.

(c) His residence and occupation at the time of Appointment.

(d) His official Headquarters.

Their headquarters should be located near the center of the Territory.

Term of Office of a fee deputy ends with that of his principal. (U.S. Marshal)

A Fee Deputy U.S. Marshal are entitled to compensation as following:

A. All gross fees actually earned, including mileage, not to exceed $1,500.00 per annum

B. Actual and necessary expenses, not to exceeding $2.00 per day, while endeavoring to arrest, serving process, a person charged with or convicted of crime.

This title is no longer in use.


This title has been around for two hundred and twelve years . It was first used for those people deputized for posse work, or for agents of other federal agencies who needed authority to carry weapons or make arrests without such authority under their own agency rules.

It has been used for guards working on dams during WWI, process servers, Customs Sky Marshals, FAA special Agent, EPA Agents, FBI Agents (before 1934), IRS Special Agents, such as those who investigated Al Capone and other mobsters, Agriculture Agents, U.S. Park Service Rangers, and many others.

Today, many state and local Police Officers assigned to the O.C.D.E.T.F. (Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force) are Special Deputy United States Marshals. The Court Security Officers who man metal detectors at U.S. Courthouses and perform other court related duties are also Special Deputy U.S. Marshals.

This title is still being used.

This title was created for promotions in the U.S. Marshal Service. came into effect around 1970 or 1971. It was first given to Deputies who worked the Witness Details. Then later it was made into a specialty for witness Security, Court Security and Warrant Deputies. There is also Chief Inspector, and Senior inspectors

At present it still is being used.


A title was used when Deputies were assigned to the Internal Revenue duties. At present I can show this title was used in the 1886 in Colorado Springs, Colorado.


VRA Deputy stands for Veterans Readjustment Program. It came in existence during President Nixon 's term. A VRA Deputy came on GS - 5 instead of GS - 6, and had a two year training program instead of the normal one year period. This program was designed to assist Vietnam veterans in obtaining jobs. To be a VRA Deputy, you had to have been in the military, to be discharged, and to apply within 280 days of your discharge date. VRA deputies did not effect the assigned number of deputies in the District, they were extras.

Title still being used today.


T.O.E. stands for "Temporarily Official Employment". They were Life time appointments by the President of the United States and could only be removed by the President. Most of them were appointed in 1950's and 1960's. They were sworn in different Districts. They did regular Deputy's work. Paid by the hour, grades varied by the number of hours that was required to be worked in each grade. They did not have to meet any of the regular deputies requirement or take the test. I do not know if there is any at present working. I believe the last two Deputies have been converted to Regular Deputies

Title is no longer in use.


W.A.E. stands for "When Actually Employed". Just about every District had a few W.A.E.'s. They entered as grade 5's and moved up in grades.

They assist regular Deputies in transporting prisoners, Court and serving process in the Districts. They were hired by District Marshals with the approval of headquarters. They are suppose to have 240 hours of Law Enforcement training before they came to work. Such as a Law Enforcement academy of some kind.

Has not been in use since 1995.


Term Deputies were appointed for one (1) year at a time. They were appointed for the Anti Air Piracy Program in 1970 thru 1972.

These Deputies were known as "Sky Marshals " . The United States Marshal Service had approximately 250 Term Deputies assigned to 33 airports across the United States. However these Deputies did not fly.

At the end of the Anti Air Piracy program most of the Term Deputies were changed over to regulars Deputies. Term Deputies did not have to take a Civil Service Test.

Term Deputies position was not charged against the District assigned Deputies jobs. They were extra deputies in the District.

Was appointed by the Marshal for a Territory or District from 1779 - 1870. They took the Census, But had no other law enforcement responsibility. Also, this title was recently used by the Marshal assigned to the Superior Court in Washington, DC. until 1989, when he became a full United States Marshal.

Known to have been used in China. There is a badge in the United States Marshal badge collection with that title on it.

Court Officers and Staff: U.S. Marshals

In addition to their duties as law enforcement officers, United States marshals have played an important role in the administration of the federal courts. The Judiciary Act of 1789 directed the president to appoint a marshal to serve in each judicial district for a renewable term of four years. The act required marshals to attend the sessions of the district and circuit courts within their respective districts and to carry out all lawful orders issued to them under the authority of the United States. Marshals carried out the courts' orders to make arrests, to provide for prisoners in federal custody, and to deliver summonses, subpoenas, and warrants. Under the provisions of the Judiciary Act of 1789, the marshal for the judicial district in which the Supreme Court of the United States sat was also responsible for serving that court. A statute of 1867 authorized the Supreme Court to appoint its own marshal.

Congress authorized the marshals to adjourn sessions of the district and circuit courts when the judge or judges of those courts were absent. Marshals also provided protection for federal judges, jurors, and witnesses. In 1792 Congress granted marshals the same authority in executing federal laws as sheriffs exercised in carrying out state laws. At the same time that the marshals carried out their principal responsibilities in the federal courts, Congress and the executive branch assigned to them local administrative tasks, such as recording the census and receiving messages from foreign consuls resident in their district.

The marshals' administrative tasks within the courts arose out of their responsibility for the disbursal of all funds by the court, as provided by an act of 1791. They disbursed funds to pay the fees and traveling expenses of witnesses, jurors, district attorneys, and clerks of court. Marshals also bought supplies for the judges and court officers, procured jail space for federal prisoners, hired the bailiffs and court criers, and rented space for courtrooms.

The financial duties of the marshals required them to report to the Department of Treasury all of the court's expenses and receipts of fees, thus making them important links between the federal government and the federal courts. Despite this role, the marshals were relatively free from oversight by the executive branch until 1861, when they were placed under the supervision of the Attorney General. In 1956 the Department of Justice established the Executive Office for U.S. Marshals, and in 1969 the department established the U.S. Marshals Service, with centralized authority over the marshals serving in the judicial districts.

Like other court officers of the early judiciary, the marshals were paid through a fee system rather than receiving a salary for their services. Marshals collected fees for issuing subpoenas, summons, writs, and other types of judicial processes for ensuring that jurors and witnesses appeared at trials and for arresting persons accused of federal crimes and bringing them before the courts. In 1896 Congress replaced the fee system with a salary for marshals.

During the twentieth century, and particularly after the creation of the Administrative Office of the United States Courts in 1939, the marshals' administrative responsibilities within the courts decreased while their role as law enforcement officers expanded. The marshals and their deputies continue to provide protection to judges, witnesses, and jurors, and they continue to execute the lawful orders of the federal government in the judicial districts.

Further Reading:
Calhoun, Frederick S. United States Marshals and Their Deputies, 1789-1989 . New York: Penguin Books, 1991.

United States Marshals Office - History

The U.S. Marshals Service (USMS) was created by the first Continental Congress in 1789. Marshals were given the power to recruit special deputies (typically local hires or temporary transfers in law enforcement) and swear in posses to help in manhunts. They were charged with assisting federal courts and carrying out orders from federal judges, members of Congress and the President. US Marshals also served subpoenas, summonses, writs, warrants and other documents created by the courts. They made arrests, handled transportation of federal prisoners and disbursed funds according to the dictates of the federal courts. Marshals could also be called upon to pay fees and expenses of the court&rsquos clerks, attorneys, jurors and witnesses, rent courtrooms, procure jail space, hire bailiffs, town criers, and janitors, if necessary. They also made sure everyone was present at hearings, including the prisoners, jurors and witnesses.

The U.S. Marshals Service (USMS) is responsible for protecting and supporting U.S. courts and the judicial system. Among their court-related duties, marshals search businesses or residences for judicial purposes seize evidence make arrests execute a judgment (deliver a court&rsquos final decision) keep safe all places where federal judicial business is done protect judges, jurors, witnesses and others from harm and transport prisoners to and from court, as well as ensure their welfare, with food, access to medical care and humane confinement.

  • The Fugitive Investigations program, which ensures that arrest warrants are managed and executed properly, and that escapees, parole violators and those who fail to appear in court are arrested and brought into custody. This sometimes extends to foreign countries where extradition orders are sought and prisoners brought back to the U.S. to face trial.
  • The Judicial Security program, which makes sure that federal judges, attorneys, witnesses, jurors and public observers are protected. Responsibilities also include protecting more than 400 federal courthouses and making sure judicial proceedings remain impartial and free form tampering, extortion and bribes.
  • The Witness Security program, which is charged with protecting government witnesses and their families, especially when they must testify against dangerous and violent criminals like drug traffickers, terrorist, organized crime figures and other criminals.
  • The Prisoner Services program, which helps to obtain services for nearly 44,000 federal prisoners. This often involves shepherding prisoners through the various stages of the court&rsquos procedures, transportation and obtaining medical care if a prisoner becomes sick.
  • The Asset Forfeiture program, which gives U.S. Marshals the power to seize and manage property seized by other federal agencies, including the FBI, Drug Enforcement Administration, Customs and Immigration Service and Internal Revenue Service. This power is usually related to cases involving money laundering, drug trafficking and terrorism.
  • The Special Operations Support program, which is responsible for providing temporary help to districts suffering from dangerous situations, national emergencies or any other situation deemed important by the U.S. Attorney General or the director of the Marshals Service. The Special Operations Group consists of a highly-trained team of deputy marshals that helps districts respond to high-risk trials, prisoner moves, unusually dangerous arrests and emergency situations where there is a violation of federal law or property.

Akal Security is a provider of security services for public and private institutions. It has been operational since 1980 and is currently the largest judicial security contractor in the United States. In 2003, Akal was awarded three contracts (

) to provide 1,500 security guards to protect US Army installations at Fort Hood, TX and Fort Stewart, GA. In 2005, Akal received a contract to provide armed guard services at 18 Air Force installations around the country. This contract provided more than 550 guards overseeing

entry control, vehicle inspections and searches, pass and badge verification, control and inspections of commercial traffic, operation of Visitor Control Centers and emergency and crisis response.


David L. Harlow became deputy director of the U.S. Marshals Service (USMS) in February 2014, a tenure that included a temporary seven-month stint as acting director. USMS is the nation&rsquos oldest federal law enforcement agency, responsible for apprehension of federal fugitives, protection of the federal judiciary, operation of the Witness Security Program, transportation of federal prisoners and seizure of property illegally obtained by criminals.

Harlow, who earned a B.A. degree in law enforcement administration from Western Illinois University, joined the U.S Marshals Service in 1983 as a deputy U.S. marshal. He served the agency as chief deputy for the northern district of Ohio until 2007. In the post, he was deputy commander of operation FALCON [Federal and Local Cops Organized Nationally] III and subsequently commander of operation FALCON 2007, for which he oversaw development of the Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force and Toledo&rsquos first fugitive apprehension team made up of numerous law enforcement agencies. From 2007 to 2008, he served as chief deputy U.S. marshal for the eastern district of Virginia.

Between 2008 and 2011, Harlow was chief of USMS&rsquos Sex Offender Investigations Branch, for which he oversaw the National Sex Offender Targeting Center and the Sex Offender Apprehension Program. He additionally developed the USMS Behavioral Analysis Unit, which helps target fugitive and non-compliant sex offenders.

In mid-2011, Harlow was named acting deputy assistant director of USMS&rsquos Investigative Operations Division (IOD). Then, in May 2012, he was made assistant director of IOD with a concurrent promotion to USMS&rsquos Senior Executive Service.

From 2012 to 2014, Harlow served as associate director for operations, managing the agency&rsquos Operational Directorate, the responsibilities of which include witness and judicial security investigative, tactical and prisoner operations and the justice prisoner and alien transportation system.

Records of the office of the Provost Marshal General, 1941-

Established: In the War Department, under the Chief of Staff, by War Department memorandum, July 3, 1941.

Transfers: To the Chief of Administrative Services, Services of Supply (SOS), effective March 9, 1942, by War Department Circular 59, March 2, 1942, as part of an army reorganization under EO 9082, February 28, 1942 to Army Service Forces (ASF, formerly SOS), by General Order 14, War Department, March 12, 1943 to Deputy Chief of Staff for Service Commands, ASF, by Circular 118, ASF, November 12, 1943 to Chief of Staff, ASF, by Circular 238, ASF, June 25, 1945 to Office of the Director of Personnel and Administration, War Department General Staff (WDGS), as an administrative staff and service, upon abolishment of ASF, effective June 11, 1946, by Circular 138, War Department, May 14, 1946, in the War Department reorganization pursuant to EO 9722, May 13, 1946 with WDGS to the Department of the Army (formerly the War Department) in the newly established National Military Establishment (NME) by the National Security Act of 1947 (61 Stat. 495), July 26, 1947 to General Staff, U.S. Army (formerly WDGS) by Circular 1, Department of the Army, September 18, 1947 with Department of the Army to the Department of Defense (formerly NME) by National Security Act Amendments of 1949 (63 Stat. 579), August 10, 1949 to Office of the Assistant Chief of Staff, G-1, Personnel (formerly Office of the Director of Personnel and Administration), effective March 1, 1950, by Circular 12, Department of the Army, February 28, 1950, as confirmed by Special Regulation 10-5-1, Department of the Army, April 11, 1950 with G-1 and other general, special, administrative, and technical staff units to Army Staff, new collective designation for all organizations responsible to the Chief of Staff, U.S. Army, by the Army Organization Act of 1950 (64 Stat. 263), June 28, 1950, as confirmed by General Order 97, November 13, 1951 to newly established Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Personnel, effective January 3, 1956, by General Order 70, Department of the Army, December 27, 1955, as confirmed by Change 13 to Special Regulation 10-5-1 (April 11, 1950), Department of the Army, December 27, 1955 with other administrative staffs to special staff status by Army Regulation 10-5, Department of the Army, January 2, 1963.

Functions: Administered army-wide programs relating to protective services, law enforcement, traffic control, and prisoners of war. Directed the military police. Maintained security in privately owned industrial facilities important to national defense.

Abolished: Effective May 20, 1974, by General Order 10, Department of the Army, May 8, 1974.

Successor Agencies: Deputy Chief of Staff for Personnel.

Finding Aids: Records of the Office of the Provost Marshal General in Helene L. Bowen, Mary Joe Head, Olive Liebman, and Jessie T. Midkiff, comps., "Preliminary Inventory of the Records of the Army Staff, 1939- ," NM 3 (1962), pp. 38-42 supplement in National Archives microfiche edition of preliminary inventories.

Security-Classified Records: This record group may include material that is security-classified.

389.2 General Records

389.2.1 Records of the Administrative Division

Textual Records: Security-classified and formerly security- classified central decimal correspondence, 1941-62 (136 ft.), with indexes. Unclassified central decimal correspondence, 1941- 62 (211 ft.), with indexes. Personnel requirements and workload reports, 1943-52. Historical file, 1941-58. Military police training course theses, 1958-63. Records of the Provost Marshal's School, Fort Gordon, GA, 1951-62.

389.2.2 Records of the Legal Office

Textual Records: Correspondence relating to the care and treatment of American and enemy prisoners of war, 1943-45. Correspondence relating to the maintenance of internal security, 1942-45. Records relating to the Provost Marshal General's participation in the preparation of the Geneva Conventions, 1946- 49.

389.2.3 Records of the Technical Information Office

Textual Records: Radio scripts, press releases, and newspaper clippings relating to publicity activities, 1942-45.

389.2.4 Records of the Budget and Fiscal Branch

Textual Records: Budget estimates and justifications, 1944-46.

389.2.5 Records of the Budget and Statistical Section

Textual Records: Records relating to the military justice system, 1945-58. Statistical reports of general prisoners, 1945-58. Monthly recidivism reports, 1949-55. Reports of parole violations, 1947-58.

389.2.6 Records of the Information Branch

Textual Records: Records of the Alien Enemy Information Bureau, consisting of records relating to Japanese, German, Italian, and other alien civilian internees during World War II, 1941-46.

389.3 Records of the Military Government Division

Textual Records: General decimal correspondence, 1942-46. Records of the Training Branch relating to training of personnel in civil administration at selected universities, 1942-48. Correspondence of the School of Military Government, Charlottesville, VA, and its successor, the School of Government of Occupied Areas, Carlisle Barracks, PA, 1942-46. Microfilm copy of German-language textbooks for schools in Germany, 1944 (24 rolls). Publications and background papers relating to civil affairs and military government in occupied areas, 1942-46, including History of Military Government Training, 5 vols., 1945, and an unpublished manuscript history, "American Military Government of Occupied Germany, 1918-20," with a microfilm library card index, n.d. (1 roll).

389.4 Records of the Prisoner of War Division

389.4.1 Records of the Operations Branch

Textual Records: Security-classified and formerly security-classified general correspondence, 1942-57, with an index. Messages, 1942-47. Microfilm copy of International Red Cross lists (3 rolls), and cables relating to Americans captured or interned by Germany and Japan, 1943-45.

389.4.2 Records of the Legal Branch

Textual Records: Correspondence relating to the internment, care, and labor of prisoners of war, 1942-46.

389.4.3 Records of the Labor and Liaison Branch

Textual Records: Detention lists and correspondence, 1942-46.

389.4.4 Records of the Special Projects Branch

Textual Records: School training records of German prisoners of war, 1943-46. Special projects file, 1943-46, with an index.

389.4.5 Records of the Italian Service Units

Textual Records: Correspondence and rosters, 1944-45.

389.4.6 Records of the Prisoner of War Information Bureau

Textual Records: Policy and subject files concerning supervision of prisoner-of-war camps, 1942-45. General correspondence, 1942- 57. Miscellaneous records, 1941-57.

389.4.7 Records of the Enemy Prisoner of War Information Bureau

Textual Records: General correspondence, 1942-46. General orders, 1953-57. Enemy prisoner of war/civilian internee general information files, 1952-53 complaint and investigation files, 1951-53 strength reporting files, 1950-53 and roster files, 1951-53. Strength returns on German prisoners of war, 1945-46. Rosters of German and other foreign nationals in U.S. custody during World War II, 1956-57. Rosters of deceased Japanese and Italian prisoners of war, 1952. Records relating to Japanese, German, Italian, and enemy prisoners of war during World War II, 1942-52.

Motion Pictures (1 reel): Ko je-do Prisoners of War, a film of the Korean War prisoner of war camp, 1952.

389.4.8 Records of the American Prisoner of War Information Branch

Textual Records: Civilian alien internee case files, 1941-45. Prisoner-of-war rosters, 1949-57. General correspondence, 1942- 49. Credit certificates and records relating to impounded and lost property, 1947-55. Card file of Americans interned by Germany and Japan during World War II, 1942-46. Subject files of Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 22d U.S. Army Prisoner of War/Civilian Internee Information Center (Fort George G. Meade, MD), 1949-74. Records of the U.S. Army Office of Prisoner of War/Missing in Action (POW/MIA) Affairs, consisting of documents released by the Task Force 250 POW/MIA Documentation Project, 1991-92.

389.5 Records of the Military Police Division

Textual Records: General correspondence relating to military police and Provost Marshal General schools, 1942-50. Records of the Organization Branch relating to the Corps of Military Police, 1942-48. Decimal correspondence of the Training Branch, 1942-46. Correspondence and reports of the Doctrine and Equipment Branch, 1942-47. Military Police Board correspondence and reports, 1942-54, and project files, 1952-62. Records of Military Police Schools at Camp Williams, Lehi, UT, 1942 Carlisle Barracks, PA, 1947-48 and Fort Gordon, GA, 1963-65. Records of the Military Police School, 1947-48.

389.6 Records of the Provost Division

Textual Records: Records relating to criminal investigations in the army, 1945-51. Statistical reports of criminal investigations, 1944-54. Rosters and other records relating to residents of relocation centers, 1942-46. Repatriation lists, 1942-46. Hesse crown jewels investigative case files, 1944-52. Tokyo Rose investigative files, 1947-49.

389.7 Records of the Internal Security Division

Textual Records: Reports of race riots and strikes, 1942-45. Correspondence relating to auxiliary military police, 1942-45. Correspondence of the Safety Branch, 1942-45. Correspondence of the Fire Prevention Branch, 1942-46. Correspondence of the Confinement Branch, 1947-50. Records of the Coordination Branch, including general correspondence, 1941-46 internal security program correspondence, 1941-46 internal security interagency coordination files, 1942-45 reports of security inspections of commercial firms, 1941-44 and a library collection, 1937-46 (bulk 1941-46).

389.8 Records of the Correction Division

Textual Records: History file, including records of the Correction Division, Adjutant General's Office, 1920-63.

389.9 Machine Readable Records (General)
13 data sets

Converted World War II prisoners of war (POW) punchcards including records of U.S. military POWs returned alive from the European and Pacific Theaters, U.S. civilian POWs interned by the Japanese, deceased U.S. military POWs interned by the Germans and Japanese, U.S. military POWs interned by the Japanese who died in ship sinkings (1944), U.S. military personnel interned in a neutral country, U.S. military personnel missing in action and returned to military control, non-U.S. civilian internees, and unofficial civilian Japanese internees, 1942-46, with supporting documentation.

Bibliographic note: Web version based on Guide to Federal Records in the National Archives of the United States. Compiled by Robert B. Matchette et al. Washington, DC: National Archives and Records Administration, 1995.
3 volumes, 2428 pages.

This Web version is updated from time to time to include records processed since 1995.


The date on which the government of the United States was to commence under the new Constitution was determined by the sitting Congress of the United States, the Congress of the Confederation under the Articles of Confederation. Its resolution of September 13, 1788 declared that the Constitution had been ratified as required, and set March 4, 1789 as the date "for commencing proceedings" under the new Constitution. [1]

However, the new Congress didn't have a quorum on March 4, because not enough senators and representatives had shown up yet. [2] When a quorum was gained, the electoral votes for President and Vice-President were counted on April 6. [3]

George Washington was inaugurated the first President on April 30, 1789. [3]

The Federal judiciary was first organized by the Judiciary Act of 1789, signed into law September 24. Washington nominated John Jay to be the first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. [4] Jay was sworn in October 19, 1789. [5]

Executive departments Edit

During the Administration of George Washington as the first President of the United States, the Cabinet included only three officials who ran actual cabinet departments Thomas Jefferson as Secretary of State, Alexander Hamilton as Secretary of the Treasury, and Henry Knox as Secretary of War. Attorney General Edmund Randolph also was part of the cabinet, but at that time, there was no department corresponding to his role it was only later that the Justice Department would become a distinct government department.

New agencies and official roles Edit

The office of United States Marshal was created by the First Congress it was the first role for federal officials who would carry out regional generalized governmental roles and functions across the country. President George Washington signed the Judiciary Act into law on September 24, 1789. [6] The Act provided that a United States Marshal's primary function was to execute all lawful warrants issued to him under the authority of the United States. The law defined marshals as officers of the courts charged with assisting Federal courts in their law-enforcement functions. Federal marshals are most famous for their law enforcement work, but that was only a minor part of their workload. The largest part of the business was paper work—serving writs (e.g., subpoenas, summonses, warrants), and other processes issued by the courts, making arrests and handling all federal prisoners. They also disbursed funds as ordered by the courts. Marshals paid the fees and expenses of the court clerks, U.S. Attorneys, jurors, and witnesses. They rented the courtrooms and jail space, and hired the bailiffs, criers, and janitors. They made sure the prisoners were present, the jurors were available, and that the witnesses were on time.

The marshals thus provided local representation for the federal government within their districts. They took the national census every decade through 1870. They distributed presidential proclamations, collected a variety of statistical information on commerce and manufacturing, supplied the names of government employees for the national register, and performed other routine tasks needed for the central government to function effectively.

The United States Revenue Cutter Service was established by an act of Congress (1 Stat. 175) on 4 August 1790 as the Revenue-Marine upon the recommendation of Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton to serve as an armed customs enforcement service. As time passed, the service gradually gained missions either voluntarily or by legislation, including those of a military nature. The Revenue Cutter Service operated under the authority of the U.S. Department of the Treasury. (On 28 January 1915, the service was merged by an act of Congress with the United States Life-Saving Service to form the United States Coast Guard.)

Nineteenth century Edit

Executive departments and agencies Edit

In 1849 the Department of the Interior was established, after Treasury Secretary Robert J. Walker stated that several federal offices were placed in departments with which they had little to do. He noted that the General Land Office had little to do with the Treasury and also highlighted the Indian Affairs office, part of the Department of War, and the Patent Office, part of the Department of State. Walker argued that these and other bureaus should be brought together in a new Department of the Interior.

Following unsuccessful efforts in 1830 and 1846 to make Attorney General a full-time job, [7] in 1869, the U.S. House Committee on the Judiciary, led by Congressman William Lawrence, conducted an inquiry into the creation of a "law department" headed by the Attorney General and also composed of the various department solicitors and United States attorneys. On February 19, 1868, Lawrence introduced a bill in Congress to create the Department of Justice. President Ulysses S. Grant signed the bill into law on June 22, 1870. [8]

Twentieth century Edit

Executive departments and agencies Edit

The United States Department of Commerce and Labor was created on February 14, 1903. It was subsequently renamed the Department of Commerce on March 4, 1913, as the bureaus and agencies specializing in labor were transferred to the new Department of Labor. [9] The United States Patent and Trademark Office was transferred from the Interior Department into Commerce. In 1940, the Weather Bureau (now the National Weather Service) was transferred from the Agriculture Department, and the Civil Aeronautics Authority was merged into the department.

The New Deal Edit

The New Deal was a series of programs, public work projects, financial reforms, and regulations enacted by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in the United States between 1933 and 1936. It responded to needs for relief, reform, and recovery from the Great Depression. It produced a significant increase in the size and number of federal programs and agencies, such as the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), the Civil Works Administration (CWA), the Farm Security Administration (FSA), the National Industrial Recovery Act of 1933 (NIRA) and the Social Security Administration (SSA). They provided support for farmers, the unemployed, youth and the elderly. The New Deal included new constraints and safeguards on the banking industry and efforts to re-inflate the economy after prices had fallen sharply. New Deal programs included both laws passed by Congress as well as presidential executive orders during the first term of the presidency of Franklin D. Roosevelt.