1936: Farwell Gives Vacation Notice; Police Called on 'Rat Patrol'

Historical Police Blotter reflects times, culture of early Lake Forest.


In 1930, the population in Lake Forest is just over 6500 people.

Lake Forest Day was cancelled that year due to economic hardships brought on by the Great Depression, and Lake Forest Day School begins construction on a new facility on Green Bay Road, according to the  timeline.

Thanks to a local resident, we are able to provide a glimpse into that 1930s time period through historical police blotters.

The entries are posted practically verbatim, except for the names of the victims or perpetrators of the crimes noted. They provide a fascinating reflection of the times and culture of that era.


Rat Patrol

April 7, 1936: Received a call from a resident on Edgewood Road. They have a rat in a trap, and they want to police to pick it up. Bennes on call. Brought rat to station and killed it.

Coupe Couple

March 23, 1936: A woman called and reported that John and Betty McCafferty left her employ around Jan. 1, 1936. After they had left, she found that clothing and a fur piece worth about $100 was missing. The woman notified her insurance company. The couple had a 1935 Ford Coupe.

Farwell Vacancy

March 17, 1936: Ralph Farwell, living in the 700 block of Sheridan Road, reports that they will be away for a week. Help will be in the house. Squads to watch.

For All to Hear

March 28, 1936: Chief Tiffany called and said there was a man walking south on Bank Lane, singing out loud. Dunn and Bennes in call. No one around.

Still in Mourning

Feb. 17, 1938: Sgt. Schultz of the Evanston Police Dept. called and wants us to be on the lookout for a woman missing from there. The 6-foot tall woman has dark hair, dark complected, slender build, wears glasses, brown fur coat, and black dress. Her husband died about 5 years ago and was buried in Lake Forest Cemetery. She has brooded over his death a great deal. Dunn and Huhnke on call. Told cemetery caretaker if she came down there to give us a call. Notified Evanston to that effect.


— information courtesy of John Walker.

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