Skip to Content

U.S. Marshals Service

History - 

The Judiciary Act of 1789: Charter for U.S. Marshals and Deputies

Appointment of the First 13 Marshals

Six days after President Washington signed the Judiciary Act of 1789 into law, he addressed the following form letter to his appointees for Marshal and District Attorney in each of the 13 new federal districts. The letter read:

I have the pleasure to inform you that you are appointed (Marshal or Attorney) for the District of _______ and your Commission is enclosed, accompanied with such Laws as have passed relative to the Judicial Department of the United States.

The high importance of the Judicial System in our National Government made it an indispensable duty to select such Characters to fill the several offices in it as would discharge their respective trust with honor to themselves and advantage to their Country.

Thus began the history of the Marshals Service. is an official site of the U.S. Federal Government, U.S. Department of Justicee