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History and many U.S. marshals seals

Historical Timeline

  • APRIL 2, 2012
    225TH COMMEMORATIVE COIN ACT

    U.S. Marshals Service 225th Commemorative Coin Act is signed into law April 2, authorizing the United States Mint to design and produce a $5 gold coin; $1 silver coin, and a half-dollar clad coin.

    2012 225th Commemorative Coin Act
  • MAY 18, 2011 — JUNE 2, 2011
    UNABOMBER BELONGINGS AUCTION

    The Unabomber, Theodore John "Ted" Kaczynski's, manifesto and other belongings are sold in an online auction from May 18 through June 2.

  • 2011
    BULGER ARREST

    Former mob boss James "Whitey" Bulger and his girlfriend are arrested on June 22 in Santa Monica, California by a team that includes Deputy U.S. Marshals and FBI agents. Bulger is extradited by U.S. Marshals to Boston to face 19 murder charges.

  • 2007
    TAX CRIME

    Edward and Elaine Brown are arrested on October 4 at their residence in New Hampshire after their conviction for tax crimes. The Browns engage in an armed stand-off with federal law enforcement for months before finally being taken into custody.

  • JULY 27, 2006
    THE ADAM WALSH CHILD PROTECTION AND SAFETY ACT

    Congress authorizes the AWA on July 27, giving the USMS three principle responsibilities under the law: to assist state, local, tribal and territorial authorities in locating and apprehending non-compliant and fugitive sex offenders; investigate violations of the AWA for federal prosecution; and to assist in the identification and location of sex offenders relocated as a result of a major disaster.

  • 8:14 PM JANUARY 1, 2006
    DEPLOYED TO KABUL, AFGHANISTAN

    Between 2006 and 2014, Special Operations Group (SOG) personnel create, develop, and mentor the Judicial Security Unit (JSU) which is a specialized unit of the Afghan National Police. SOG expands the JSU into more than 1,000 officers who are responsible for the security of the Afghan Supreme Court, its Justices, and 13 other courthouses in Kabul. SOG's program advances court security and judicial protection into all 34 provinces in Afghanistan.

    2006 Deployed to Kabul Afghanistan
  • 2005
    FALCON

    Through Operation FALCON (Federal and Local Cops Organized Nationally), Deputy U.S. Marshals and law enforcement partners implement national fugitive operations to apprehend felons. FALCON operations run from April 2005 through June 2009. In total, FALCON results in 91,086 arrests and clears 117,874 warrants.

    2005 Falcon team
  • 8:09 PM JANUARY 1, 2003
    DEPLOYED TO BAGHDAD, IRAQ

    Between 2003 and 2009, the Special Operations Group (SOG) deploys personnel to Baghdad, Iraq to support the Regime Crimes Liaison Office and the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs. SOG personnel establish the first Central Criminal Court of Iraq, develop a protection force for the Iraqi Courts and play a critical role in the security and operation of the Iraqi High Tribunal during the prosecution of Saddam Hussein and his regime.

    2003 Deployed to Baghdad, Iraq
  • SEPTEMBER 11, 2001
    9/11

    During the aftermath of the terrorist attacks on September 11th, the USMS carries out various duties such as securing airports, and working with state and local law enforcement to clear debris, recover victims and identify remains at the World Trade Center in New York City and the Pentagon in Arlington, VA.

    9/11 2001
  • JULY 2001
    AMERICA'S STAR IN SPACE

    Astronaut Jim Reilly, an honorary U.S. Marshal wears his badge on his space uniform during the STS-104 Mission on Space Shuttle Atlantis in July. He wears it again on a second mission to space on June 8, 2007.

    2001 Americas Star In Space
  • DECEMBER 2000
    THE PRESIDENTIAL THREAT PROTECTION ACT

    The Presidential Threat Protection Act of 2000 is signed in December and leads to the creation of the seven Marshals Service's Regional Fugitive Task Forces.

  • 1998
    FIRST FOREIGN OFFICE

    The United State Marshals Service establishes its first foreign investigative presence at the U.S. Embassy in Mexico City, Mexico.

  • APRIL 19, 1995
    OKLAHOMA CITY BOMBING

    On April 19, the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City is bombed in a domestic terrorist attack carried out by Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols. Members of the Marshals Service family are killed in the attack. The Marshals Service provides security for the 1997 trials and oversight of the execution of McVeigh.

    1995 Oklahoma City Bombing with 3 men
  • AUGUST 21, 1992
    RUBY RIDGE

    On August 21, while enforcing court orders in Idaho, USMS Special Operations Group members encounter tragedy after confronting fugitive Randall Weaver near his family compound. Inspector Bill Degan and members of the Weaver family are killed after a deadly confrontation.

    1992 Ruby Ridge ID
  • 1989
    USMS BICENTENNIAL DAY

    President George H.W. Bush signs a letter of proclamation designating September 24 as "United States Marshals Bicentennial Day" in observance of 200 years of service to the Nation.

    1989 US Marshals Service Bicentennial Day
  • AUGUST 20, 1985
    NATIONAL PRISONER TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM

    On August 20 the United States Marshals Service acquires its first Boeing 727 aircraft to use for prisoner transport. In 1995, the Marshals Service and Immigration and Naturalization Service merge prisoner transport services and creates the Justice Prisoner and Alien Transportation System (JPATS). Operated by the Marshals Service, JPATS becomes the largest transporter of prisoners worldwide.

    1985 National Prisoner Transportation System
  • 1985
    ASSET FORFEITURE

    The US Marshal Service assumes responsibility for the management and disposition of seized assets for federal law enforcement agencies and U.S. Attorneys nationwide, with the passage of the 1984 Comprehensive Crime Control Act.

    different currency in coins
  • 1982
    COURT SECURITY OFFICER PROGRAM

    The Court Security Officer program is established in cooperation with the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts.

    1982 Court Security Officer program with 4 men
  • OCTOBER 6, 1981
    FUGITIVE INVESTIGATIVE STRIKE TEAMS (FIST)

    Fugitive Investigative Strike Teams (FIST) are initiated to capture violent fugitives wanted by federal and local law enforcement. The first FIST operation begins in Miami, Florida on October 6 and concentrates on drug trafficking and violent offenses.

    1981 Fugitive Investigative Strike Teams
  • OCTOBER 1979
    FUGITIVE OPERATIONS

    In October, Attorney General Benjamin R. Civiletti transfers responsibility for certain fugitive operations from the FBI to the U. S. Marshals Service. Christopher Boyce is the first high profile fugitive arrested by the U.S. Marshals under this memorandum of understanding.

    Many men for 1979 Fugitive Operations
  • SEPTEMBER 1975
    BOSTON BUSING

    In September, U.S. Marshals enforce the federal court order in support of busing to increase integration at schools in Boston, Massachusetts.

    People gathering in 1975 Boston Busing
  • FEBRUARY 27, 1973 — MAY 8, 1973
    WOUNDED KNEE

    Wounded Knee, part of the Pine Ridge Reservation, is seized by followers of the American Indian Movement on February 27. U.S. Marshals Service volunteers from all ranks work toward a resolution. On May 8, after 10 weeks, U.S. Marshals take control of the situation. U.S. Marshal Lloyd Grimm (D/NE) and an FBI agent are wounded and two Native Americans die.

    1973 Wounded Knee - 3 men and a flag
  • 1971
    SPECIAL OPERATION GROUP

    The Special Operations Group (SOG)  is established to provide a well-trained mobile group of self-sufficient Deputies capable of responding anywhere in the United States and its territories within a few hours of activation.

    1971 Special Operations Group
  • 1971
    WITNESS SECURITY

    The Witness Security Program is established as a division of the U.S. Marshals Service following the passage of the Organized Crime Control Act of 1970.

    1972 Witness Security
  • 1969
    HEADQUARTERS ORGANIZATION

    The U.S. Marshals Service Headquarters is formally established as a central organization to oversee and support district offices.

    Seal of US Marshals
  • OCTOBER 21, 1967
    PENTAGON RIOTS

    Anti-Vietnam War protestors rally in Washington D.C. on October 21 in a national demonstration against the war. Military Police are joined by nearly 300 Deputy U.S. Marshals at the Pentagon. A riot erupts and lasts into the night. During the riot, more than 680 people are arrested.

    1967 Pentagon Riots
  • 1962
    JAMES MEREDITH AT OLE MISS

    Deputy U.S. Marshals face full-scale riots on September 30, ahead of the enrollment of James Meredith, an African American student at the University of Mississippi. Teams of Deputies protect James around the clock until his graduation.

    1962 James Meredith at Ole Miss
  • NOVEMBER 14, 1960
    RUBY BRIDGES

    Ruby Bridges is escorted to her New Orleans elementary school on November 14 by Deputy U.S. Marshals who are called upon to help integrate the educational institutions of the city. The opposition to her entry and her protectors inspire artist Norman Rockwell to create an illustration, later becoming famous, entitled "The Problem We All Live With," for Look magazine. In 2000, Ms. Bridges is appointed an honorary Deputy U.S. Marshal.

    in 1960 two US Marshals escorting Ruby Bridges
  • DECEMBER 17, 1956
    USMS HEADQUARTERS

    The Executive Office of the U.S. Marshals is created on December 17, which leads to the formal establishment of U.S. Marshals' headquarters.

  • 1920
    PROHIBITION

    The 18th Amendment prohibited the manufacture, sale and transportation of intoxicating beverages. When enforcement of the Act began, U.S. Marshals serve as the principle enforcing agents until the 1927 creation of an independent Bureau of Prohibition.

    1920 Prohibition
  • 1917
    WORLD WAR I

    While American troops fight in the trenches of Europe, U.S. Marshals protect the home front from enemy aliens, spies, and saboteurs.

    1917 World War I
  • NOVEMBER 1910
    U.S. - MEXICAN BORDER PROTECTION

    In November, Francisco Madero launches a revolution against Mexican President Porfirio Diaz from U.S. soil. The turmoil compel U.S. Marshals to protect the Mexican-American border.

    A man with mustash
  • 1906
    CHINESE CONSULAR COURTS

    After the Boxer Rebellion of 1900, U.S. Marshals open consular courts in China, continuing to operate through 1943. Consular courts are also in the Ottoman Empire, Russia, Korea, and Japan.

    US Marshals Seal for China
  • MAY 11, 1894
    PULLMAN STRIKE

    Pullman Strike begins May 11. The federal courts and President Cleveland's Administration order U.S. Marshals to keep trains running to ensure the U.S. mail is safe from theft and damage.

    1894 Pullman Strike
  • 1890
    PROTECTION OF FEDERAL JUDGES

    In the April Supreme Court decision, In Re Neagle, the Court holds that the President can, through the Attorney General, direct a U.S. Marshal to accompany and protect federal judges from assault, thus establishing one of the primary missions of the Marshals Service to protect the federal judiciary.

    1890 Protection of Federal Judges
  • 1881
    GUNFIGHT AT THE O.K. CORRAL

    October in Tombstone, Arizona Territory, Deputy U.S. Marshal Virgil Earp and Special Deputy U.S. Marshals, brothers Wyatt and Morgan Earp, along with Doctor John "Doc" Holliday, gun down Frank and Tom McLaury as well as Billy Clanton a short distance from the O.K. Corral.

    Photo of 1881 Gunfight at the OK Corral
  • 1878
    LINCOLN COUNTY WAR

    Lincoln County War is a conflict in the New Mexico Territory between rival factions; U.S. Marshals fight on both sides of the conflict, cresting through the first half of the year. Billy the Kid serves as a Special Deputy U.S. Marshal.

    Photo of 1878 Lincoln County War
  • 1877
    FREDERICK DOUGLASS

    Frederick Douglass becomes the first African American U.S. Marshal upon his appointment by President Hayes on March 17. Douglass is the U.S. Marshal for the District of Columbia and serves until 1881.

    Portrait of Frederick Douglass
  • 1875
    BASS REEVES

    Bass Reeves is among the first known African American Deputy U.S. Marshals west of the Mississippi. He serves for 32 years, until 1907, in the Western District of Arkansas and Indian Territory. He arrests more than 3,000. felons during his career

    Photo of Bass Reeves with Mustash
  • APRIL 15, 1872
    GOING SNAKE MASSACRE

    Eight Deputy U.S. Marshals are killed April 15 and 16 in Indian Territory (now Oklahoma).

  • 1872 — 1913
    MOONSHINE WAR

    U.S. Marshals assist Internal Revenue Agents in enforcing the whiskey tax laws until 1913.

    Photo of 1872 Moonshine War
  • JULY 1, 1870
    DEPARTMENT OF jUSTICE

    The Department of Justice is created on July 1; U.S. Marshals become part of the Department.

    photo of 1870 DOJ Created Seal
  • 1865
    CATCHING COUNTERFEITERS

    The Treasury Department relies on the U.S. Marshals to pursue counterfeiters around the nation until 1865, when the Secret Service is created and takes over the function.

  • APRIL 1861 — MAY 1865
    CIVIL WAR

    From April 1861 to May 1865, the U.S. Marshals root out Confederate spies and confiscate property being used to support the Confederacy.

  • 1861
    GUARDING LINCOLN

    Ward Hill Lamon, U.S. Marshal for the District of Columbia, accompanies President-elect Abraham Lincoln to Washington, D.C. for his February 23 inauguration. Marshal Lamon acts as the President's personal bodyguard. Lincoln objects to Lamon's overzealous efforts to protect him. Lincoln is assassinated April 1, 1865 while Lamon is on official duties out of the District

    U.S. Marshals guarding Lincoln in 1861
  • SEPTEMBER 18, 1850
    FUGITIVE SLAVE ACT

    The Fugitive Slave Act is passed on September 18. U.S. Marshals begin arresting and returning fugitive slaves to their masters until 1861.

    Fugitive slave act in 1850
  • JANUARY 11, 1794
    FIRST U.S. MARSHAL KILLED IN LINE OF DUTY

    U.S. Marshal Robert Forsyth is killed while serving civil process on January 11.

    The first U.S. Marshal killed in line of duty
  • 1794
    WHISKEY REBELLION

    Whiskey Rebels becoming too powerful to be suppressed by U.S. Marshal David Lenox, President Washington calls on state militia to assist in quelling the rebellion.

    Whisky rebel photo of 1794
  • 1790
    CENSUS TAKERS

    U.S. Marshals conduct the Federal Census, doing so every 10 years through 1870, when the duty is transferred from the U.S. Marshals.

    Census takers photo of 1790
  • SEPTEMBER 24, 1789
    THE JUDICIARY ACT

    The Judiciary Act is approved by Congress and signed into law by President Washington on September 24. President Washington appoints the first 13 U.S. Marshals.

    Judiciary act photo of 1789