Inside the Fair's gate, the St. Louis City Police had no jurisdiction across
St. Louis County line. A county  grand jury and a sheriff  helped form
the Jefferson Guard that would end  the "lawlessness and debauchery" in the bars and gambling dives which had sprung up there.

The Jefferson Guards were not simple volunteers, but   veterans of the
Spanish-American and Philippine-American wars. They lived in barracks on the fairgrounds and were paid 50 dollars  a month (later, they received a 10 dollar a  month raise).

Their job entailed  guarding  the exhibits, escorting distinguished visitors, enforce Fair's rules as well as being trained to   assist the fire department.

They could arrest people but had no power to charge them for their crimes.

The   Jefferson Guards was considered by many to be helpful ("walking information booths"), but also on occasion- heavy-handed.

A local  newspaper's August 3, 1904 issue  poked fun at the Jefferson Guards in a story- "Police at the Fair Will Get You If You Don't Watch Out." and detailed  causes for which visitors could be arrested: walking on the grass; carrying lighted cigars into exhibits (remember, the buildings were constructed of wood and staff) and "jollying" (making fun) of the guards.

John  Mason of 2224 Edwards Street complained to the Post-Dispatch after  being arrested by  a Jefferson Guard for not wearing a coat in the  Palace of Fine Arts.  After a brief delay, he was let go  when Captain William Young,  commander of  the World's Fair  District, didn't know what to charge him with.

But all was not  bad, the police and Jefferson Guards kept an eye out for lost children and delivered a total of 1,160 wandering kids to The Model playground, where  parents knew anyone lost would be taken.  The Guards  could also call for ambulances or medical help for the sick. There was no charge for ambulatory services.

To protect  Queen Victoria's jubilee treasures displayed in the British Pavilion, Scotland Yard agents were brought over, headed by  Sir John Kenneth Ferrier,  who also demonstrated a new police technique,-  fingerprinting,  to  a June meeting of the International Association of Police Chiefs.

By the summer months, 1,000 Jefferson Guard were used on a daily basis.

Lee  Gaskins'   AT THE FAIR  The 1904 St. Louis World's   Fair 
                   Web  Design and Art/Illustration   copyrighted  2008
A Jefferson Guard
Jefferson Guard with  found lost  children
Officers of the Jefferson Guard
Some of the St. Louis Police force.