The Fort Worth Police Department has worn only five badges in its history. In June of 1912, the Fort Worth Police Department adopted the current badge. The badge is in the shape of a shield with a panther on top.
The panther is historically significant, as Fort Worth's nickname is Panther City. In 1875, the Dallas Herald published an article by a former Fort Worth lawyer, Robert E. Cowart. Mr. Cowart wrote that the decimation of Fort Worth's population, caused by the economic disaster and hard winter of 1873, had dealt a severe blow to the cattle industry. He further stated that the impact on the cattle industry, combined with the railroad stopping the laying of track 30 miles outside of Fort Worth, had caused Fort Worth to become such a drowsy place that he saw a panther asleep in the street by the courthouse. The nickname Panther City was enthusiastically embraced when in 1876 Fort Worth recovered economically. Many businesses and organizations continue to use Panther in their name.
The Fort Worth Police Department badge is the only police badge to go to the moon. Astronaut Alan Bean, a graduate of R. L. Paschal High School in Fort Worth, was given a honorary police commission and badge before going into space in November 1969 as pilot of the Apollo 12 spacecraft. When he walked on the moon, the Fort Worth Police badge was in his space suit.
1886 to 1891
Circa early 1900's
The current Fort Worth Police Department shoulder patch was adopted in 1977.
The shield shape of the patch is recognition of the shield as a symbol of protection.
The star represents the shape of the badge of Law and Order of the frontier days and thereby its recognition of the founding of law enforcement in this country. It is also a symbol representative of the widely known slogan of the "Lone Star State."
The unbroken ring lock in the star depicts unity, solidarity, and goal continuance of purpose in law enforcement.
The longhorn steer figure in the center of the star represents the historic western culture of Fort Worth.
For more information, visit the Fort Worth Police Historical Association website.