Portsmouth N.H. Police History 
An American Law Enforcement Story
Portsmouth N.H. Police History 
An American Law Enforcement Story
The Portsmouth Police Patch represents a deep history of the Portsmouth Police as well as the State of New Hampshire. The patch depicts the current NH State Seal est. 1784 (reestablished in 1931 after many years of changes) which depicts a broadside view of the frigate Raleigh which was built in Portsmouth in 1776 as one of the first 13 warships sponsored by the Continental Congress for the new American Navy. 

She was the first ship to carry the newly authorized American Flag into a sea battle. The Raleigh has a checkered career of adversities though. She was unable to go to sea for 15 months for lack of armament, and after her first voyage to France for munitions, her captain was dismissed for incompetence. Soon thereafter she was beached off Maine, captured by British warships, and used for the remainder of the Revolutionary War against her own country. 

A granite boulder is shown in the left foreground, as symbolic of the Granite State’s rugged terrain and the character of its citizenry. By State Law, only a granite boulder can be shown. 

The ship “on stocks” being built on a sand bar with the rising sun over the Atlantic Ocean in the background directly represents and showcases Portsmouth as having become a major shipbuilder in the early years. The State Legislature wanted to represent this industry within the State Seal. A wreath of laurel, the year 1776 (to represent our declaration of independence from the British on Jan 5, 1776) and the words Seal of the State of New Hampshire frames the entire scene. The uniform patch with yellow stitching was adopted in the 1970’s (between 1972-1973) with one patch being worn on the left shoulder. Patches to be worn on each shoulder were issued in late 1980’s (1987-1988) and the stitching was changed to a silver thread.



All views contained within this publication are those of the author, Dr. David J. Ferland, and is not intended to be the views and opinions of the Portsmouth NH Police Department. The purpose of this web site is for the entertainment of its visitors and all rights have been reserved. No use is permitted which will infringe on the copyright without the express written consent of the copyright owner. 
Copyright 2009-2015 by Dr. David J. Ferland, DavidFerlandK9@gmail.co