Saturday, September 10, 2016

American Protective Services Badge, Blackington badge company, circa 1980's, Oakland, California

Today we'll be taking a look at another recent addition to the badge collection.

This badge is a "Classic 6 Point Star" badge from the now defunct security firm of "American Protective Services" of Oakland, California.

This style of badge is nearly identical to the badges from the California Bay Area police departments, of San Francisco and Oakland.  These smooth, silver badges, with bold black lettering, were all the rage when American Protective Services started business back in 1945.  It is very likely that the security company choose this style of badge to gain some "respect by association" to the local law enforcement departments in the Bay Area.

American Protective Services was founded in 1945, in Oakland, Californian by Thomas and Mercedes Keating.  The security agency grew into one of the largest security firms in America and was eventually sold to the Pinkerton Detective Agency in 2000.  Pinkerton absorbed American Protective Services and the badge and name were retired at that time.  In 2003, Pinkerton was in turn, purchased by Securitas Security Services USA.

This badge has a "Large Burgess" style of pin catch that was first used in 1960, and is still used today.  Since the American Protective Services company went out of business in 2000, this badge falls into that 40 year time frame.  

From the patina and wear on the badge, I am going to guess that it dates to the 1980's, but there is no way to know for certain.  The number on the badge is a higher number, so it was probably issued in the later years of the company.

The badge is quite dished and is also quite large.  The badge measures 3 inches wide, by 3 1/2 inches tall!  Most modern star badges are quite a bit smaller.  I am sure that this badge would definitely get noticed in the field, and there would be a good chance it could be mistaken for a local cop's badge as well!

The badge was custom made by the Blackington badge company. Blackington has been making custom badges for over a century.   Most of the early badges from APS appear to have been made by the Ed Jones Company of Berkley, California (the city next door to the ABS main office).  The fact that this badge is made by Blackington would also tend to indicate a late badge.

This badge combines the classic look of the traditional Bay Area police departments with the "All American Name" of American Protective Services.  It is a wonderful addition to the collection!

Here is the album.  Enjoy!

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