Research continues but many who have studied the history of the Baltimore police feel this oval is the 1st issue badge for the Baltimore "Regular Police" circa 1845.
The Sep. 22, 1845 Baltimore Sun Newspaper article confirms the police were wearing badges prior to the 1851 issue of the star badge seen below.
Baltimore Lieutenant of Police S.D. (Southern District) badge, Feb. 18, 1845. At this time the So. Dist. had two Captains and four Lieutenants. Extremely rare. Hallmarked by A. E. Warner of Baltimore, one of Baltimore's early and celebrated Silversmiths.
The Baltimore police, as constituted in 1848, consisted in the daytime of one high constable, one regular policeman for each ward, who was also Lieutenant of the nigh-watch in his district, and the night watchmen. Besides these there were two extra policemen for each ward, who were called into service as occasion required."
As reported by The Sun
Baltimore Oct. 21, 1851
Page 1, Local Matters:
The Stars.--The badge designed to be worn by the city police was yesterday mounted for the first time by Messrs. McKinley & Calloway, who are in special attendance at the hall of the Maryland Institute. It consists of a heavily gilded, brightly burnished six pointed star, in the centre of which is seen a correct representation of the Battle Monument, surrounded by the words "City Police," and underlined with the date of "1797" the date of our city's charter. The star is worn on the left lappel of the coat, and is so conspicuous that he who runs may read.
Courtesy Gary Provenzano
Baltimore Police star issued Oct. 20, 1851.
Baltimore Police Oval shield - June 1860.
1st style Baltimore Police 20 point shield issued June 22, 1862. These shields were made with the 1st issue center seal and are two piece construction with a brass ring and points.
2nd style Baltimore Police 20 point shield with a slightly different seal and one piece construction. All white metal.
Baltimore Police matched set of wreath and shield dating from 1890 - 1915. This set was assigned to Officer James E. Schmidt of the Northern District. He was appointed in 1894 and served until 1923.
Baltimore Police Captain badge for the Northwestern District. Jeweler made with hard fired enamel. According to noted Baltimore historian Bruce Green, the only one known to exist.
On September 8th 1868 George Earhart was appointed a Policeman for the Western District. After eighteen months of service as a patrolman a position opened up and he was raised to the rank of Sergeant with night duty. Two months later he was assigned to day duty. On April 9th 1874 he was promoted to Lieutenant. Six months had scarcely passed by when on October 19th 1874 he was promoted to Captain having reached the rank in six years after his appointment as patrolman. Captain Earhart took a prominent part in suppressing the riots of 1877. He held that position until his retirement in 1889.