April 1, 1909
FORMER POLICE LIEUTENANT HAMMIL.
Police Lieutenant H. W. Hammil yesterday resigned to become a private detective at the Hotel Baltimore. Hammil succeeds Edward Hickman, who leaves the hotel to go into business with his brother.
Lieutenant Hammil has been a member of the police department for nineteen years. Seven years ago he was promoted to a seargency and two years ago was made lieutenant. While his advancement may not have been as rapid as many who went on the force after he did, there were reasons for it. He was always averse to turning "crooks" loose because some petty or big policeman requested it and he always did his full duty in spit of who it hurt or what political interests were disturbed. That one thing, more than anything else, mitigated against rapid promotion.
Hammil was made a lieutenant during the Governor Folk "rigid police investigation," while it was in its incipency, in fact. One day an officer who had made charges against John Hayes, then chief of police, was cursing the chief and Frank F. Rozzelle, then a commissioner, down in Central station. Hammil ordered the man to stop such talk or something "would be doing." As soon as Governor Folk had peremptorily removed Commissioner Rozzelle by wire and the new board had been organized and John Hayes dropped from the department, Hammil was ordered removed from headquarters, where he had served the better part of his life, to No. 4 station at Fifteenth and Walnut streets.
The records will show that while other districts, notably headquarters, have had a full quota of men and more, too, No. 4 has been handicapped with barely half enough men to do proper police duty. Hammil's watch, especially, never had a full complement of men the whole time he was there. It is said that if an officer got sick, crippled or otherwise "defunct," he was detailed to Hammil's watch. Handicapped as he was, however, he always went along with out complaint and kept up his end of the string.
As soon as Hickman resigned from the detective position at the Hotel Baltimore, D. J. Dean sent for Hammil and offered him the place. It is better pay and far more pleasant work -- no more knockers, no politics.
"I am sorry to leave some of my old friends on the department," Hammil said yesterday, "but I am glad to get away from a place where you felt all along like you were sitting on a dynamite bomb. If one 'crook' was arrested here would come a kick from his political friend, and when another fell into our hands here would come another 'gang' of political kickers. I always let 'em kick, though they always threatened to get my job."
The board took no action on Hammil's successor yesterday, Commissioner Elliott H. Jones being away hunting ducks. It may be left for the new board to fill.