Compared to police badges, which have been symbols of authority since at least the mid-19th century, when tin stars differentiated the "good" guys from the "bad" ones in the Wild West, police patches are relatively recent arrivals. In fact, police patches did not become popular in the United States until the 1930s, when insignia for law-enforcement officials were hand embroidered on felt. Eventually the designs and lettering on patches for local, state, and federal peacekeepers were stitched by sewing machines, which brought uniformity to the designs and ubiquity to the genre.

Police patches can be shaped like shields, circles, triangles, and (depending on your locality) arrowheads, keystones, or an officer’s home state. Some people collect patches based on geography (for example, all the police badges in Texas) while others collect patches based on the wearer’s duties, whether they worked on a bomb squad, S.W.A.T. team, or mounted patrol. Patches showing service in a specialized units such as motorcycle patrols, divisions, or squads are generally more difficult to find (they are certainly pricier) than stock patches, which only vary from area to area by the name of the community being served. Other special-unit patches include those worn by members of Native American “tribal” police officers.

Sheriff and highway-patrol patches are highly collected, as are patches featuring elaborate embroidery (vintage patches from Alaska, Hawaii, and Florida are some of the nicest). And then there are U.S. government police patches, which range from simple patches bearing the letters M.P. for military police to more elaborate designs that herald one’s membership in the police units of the U.S. Treasury, Arlington National Cemetery, or even the Bureau of Engraving and Printing.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Comic Character Pinbacks

Comic Character Pinbacks

Mark Lansdown's excellent collection of over 800 pinbacks representing 200+ comic characters from 100+ strips. Beau… [read review or visit site]



Most watched eBay auctions    

Vintage Rare Arizona Game And Fish Shoulder Patch Police Sheriff AzSan Luis Obispo Pd Patch1st Issue Escondido Ca California Police PatchNorth Dakota Game & Fish Police PatchAlliston, Ontario Canada Rare First Issue Police Shoulder Patch California State Supreme Court Marshal Police PatchChowchilla Pd Reverse Bear PatchOld Style Los Angeles Sheriff Patches Set Cheesecloth BackingCalifornia State Museum Police Patch Alaska Fish & Game Police PatchPolice Shoulder Patch Large Gold Bullion Amtrak Railroad Sergeant Pennsylvania State Police Hazardous Device & Explosive Section Police PatchMarta Transit Police Atlanta Explosives Detection K9 Police Patch Georgia GaCalifornia Twin Cities Police Patch ObsoleteGeorgia Game & Fish Law Enforcement Police Patch Dnr Warden Wildlife Ver #2Round Valley Reservation Tribal Police Patch California TribeUs Marshal Investigative Services Patch 3-d Bullion, Smaller VersionLa Louisiana Highway Patrol State Police Radio Communications 911 Vintage PatchVintage Bowie Cochise County Sheriff's Department Arizona Az Police PatchVirginia Police - Stafford Sheriff Va Police PatchCalifornia Department Of Insurance Criminal Investigation Branch Police Patch Massachusetts Environmental Affairs Police PatchUs Marshal Investigative Services Patch 3-d Bullion, Larger VersionObsolete Vintage Scottish Police Patch Badge - Northern Constabulary - MintRare Alpine County Sheriff Search And Rescue Patch ++ Mint Ca Htf2 Diff Dea Phoenix Az Drug Narcotics Unit Federal Task Force Police Patches Federal Atf Cert Inv Patch Police Fire Arson Var Gman City Of Commerce Safety Specialist Los Angeles County La Co Psd Patch Htf Marin County Ca Sheriff Swat Subdued Tactical 2-patch Set!Obsolete Vintage Welsh Heddlu Constabulary Patch Badge - Pc 0761 Police - Mint25 Old North Carolina Sheriff Patches, Rare 1950s-1970sNorth West Mounted Police Patch, Canada25 North Carolina Sheriff Department PatchesCounty Of Los Angeles Parks & Recreation Park Patrol Patches (3), Lasd, Police Federal Fbi Atf Rochester, Ny Police Fire Eod Bomb Sqd Tf Patch Var Mcso Gman 2 Diff Az Dea Phoenix Arizona Drug Narcotics Unit Federal Police Patches GmanFederal Atf Cfi Nrt Patch Police Fire Arson Var Gman Lot Of Vintage Police Patches And Window Decals Florida Ny BaltimoreUs Marshal Patch - Gold Mylar 3 1/2"8 Different Pierce County, Washington Sheriff PatchesFederal Fbi Wny Ittf Patch Usss Dss Irs Pi Ice Cbp Nysp Buffalo Ny Police TfRcmp Royal Candian Mounted Police Patch Display Shadow Box Case W/ Rank Maricopa County Sheriffs Office Crime Scene Investigator Csi Lab PatchKalispell Tribal Public Safety Patch Police Sheriff Fire Ems WashingtonMaryland State Marine Police Patch Defunct Very OldAustria Bmi Flug Polizei Austrian Police Aviation Helicoprter Patch Wmd Nbc CbrnCanada Ste. Anne Manitoba Police Swat Ert Srt Trt Esu Subdued PatchMassachusetts Haverhill Police Patch Auxiliary Old Cheese ClothTanana Alaska Public Safety Patch Police Sheriff Fire2 Federal Patches- U.s.marine Corp Cid Agent & K-9 Us Pentagon PoliceLancaster, Ca Out Of Issue Park Ranger Police PatchOregon Or Police Patch Department Of Justice Criminal DivisionUs Marshal District Of Nevada "fugitive Investigative Strike Team" PatchMaricopa County Sheriff;s Office Enforcement Support Division PatchUs Marshal Patch - Gold Mylar SealRare Vintage Bureau Of Indian Affairs Bia Federal Police Shoulder PatchCity Of Carson Public Safety Los Angeles County La Co Psd Patch Cologne Germany Swat Mobile Operationbs Commando Police PatchWashington State Dnr Police Ranger Game Warden Police PatchAustria Bmi Polizei Austrian Police Canine K9 Dog Squad Patch German Shepherd