The Source for Crime and Justice Data

Police Departments, Arrests and Crime in the United States, 1860-1920 (ICPSR 7708)

Principal Investigator(s):

Summary:

These data on 19th- and early 20th-century police department and arrest behavior were collected between 1975 and 1978 for a study of police and crime in the United States. Raw and aggregated time-series data are presented in Parts 1 and 3 on 23 American cities for most years during the period 1860-1920. The data were drawn from annual reports of police departments found in the Library of Congress or in newspapers and legislative reports located elsewhere. Variables in Part 1, for which the city is the unit of analysis, include arrests for drunkenness, conditional offenses and homicides, persons dismissed or held, police personnel, and population. Part 3 aggregates the data by year and reports some of these variables on a per capita basis, using a linear interpolation from the last decennial census to estimate population. Part 2 contains data for 267 United States cities for the period 1880-1890 and was generated from the 1880 federal census volume, REPORT ON THE DEFECTIVE, DEPENDENT, AND DELINQUENT CLASSES, published in 1888, and from the 1890 federal census volume, SOCIAL STATISTICS OF CITIES. Information includes police personnel and expenditures, arrests, persons held overnight, trains entering town, and population.

Access Notes

  • These data are freely available.

Dataset(s)

DS0:  Study-Level Files
Documentation:
DS1:  Raw Data for 23 U.S. Cities, 1860-1920 - Download All Files (0.4 MB)
DS2:  U.S. Cities Data, 1880-1890 - Download All Files (0.2 MB)
DS3:  Aggregated U.S. Cities, 1860-1920 - Download All Files (0.1 MB)
DS5:  SAS Data Definition Statements for Raw Data - Download All Files (0.1 MB)
Data:

ASCII + SAS Setup
DS6:  SAS Data Definition Statements for U.S. Cities Data - Download All Files (0.1 MB)
Data:

ASCII + SAS Setup
DS7:  SAS Data Definition Statements for Aggregated Data - Download All Files (0.1 MB)
Data:

ASCII + SAS Setup

Study Description

Citation

Monkkonen, Eric. Police Departments, Arrests and Crime in the United States, 1860-1920. ICPSR07708-v2. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2005-11-04. http://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR07708.v2

Persistent URL:

Export Citation:

  • RIS (generic format for RefWorks, EndNote, etc.)
  • EndNote XML (EndNote X4.0.1 or higher)

Funding

This study was funded by:

  • United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. Bureau of Justice Statistics

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:   arrests, census data, crime, criminal justice system, police activity, police chiefs, United States

Time Period:  

  • 1860--1920

Date of Collection:  

  • 1975--1978

Data Types:   aggregate data, and administrative records data

Methodology

Data Source:

annual reports of police departments, 1888 federal census volume, REPORT ON THE DEFECTIVE, DEPENDENT, AND DELINQUENT CLASSES, and 1890 federal census volume, SOCIAL STATISTICS OF CITIES

Extent of Processing:  ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes.

Version(s)

Original ICPSR Release:  

Version History:

  • 2006-01-12 All files were removed from dataset 4 and flagged as study-level files, so that they will accompany all downloads.
  • 2006-01-12 All files were removed from dataset 4 and flagged as study-level files, so that they will accompany all downloads.
  • 2005-11-04 On 2005-03-14 new files were added to one or more datasets. These files included additional setup files as well as one or more of the following: SAS program, SAS transport, SPSS portable, and Stata system files. The metadata record was revised 2005-11-04 to reflect these additions.

Related Publications ?

Variables

Utilities

Metadata Exports

If you're looking for collection-level metadata rather than an individual metadata record, please visit our Metadata Records page.

Download Statistics