In February 1936, a vice scandal rocked the town of Eugene, Oregon, U.S.A. Evidence was produced to show that local police had allowed gambling and prostitution to continue contrary to law. Within a year, civil service rules had been introduced at the Eugene Police Department. These rules ‘reformed’ policing by breaking the direct links between police and ward politicians. By accessing a range of primary source materials including newspapers, oral histories, census data and crime statistics, and, by situating the ‘scandal’ within a broader historical framework, this article explores the ways in which civil service reform might best be understood.
- Civil service
- Police history
- Rule of law
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science