Hey, Ladies


The ladies of DPS knew how to live large near the tail end of The Great Depression.  And boy howdy, could they tilt a hat just so!

As the war got into full swing, women assumed roles formerly filled by men, and literally got their hands dirty.


But women with administrative duties were not left idle; check out the STACKS of driver license applications behind Cicely and Mrs. Miller.


After the war ended, applications continued to pour in.


Meanwhile, lucky teens were trying their hands at the new Aetna Steerometer, which simulated driving conditions.


Student drivers got to take a spin in the snazzy Studebaker training car.  Hold on to your boater straw hats, gents!  Maybe they’re going to pick up the fourth member of their barbershop quartet?


As the years rolled by, DPS workers changed with the times, as seen by the lovely hairdos of Ms. Davis and Ms. Deeds, bookending a stern bespectacled Gene Kelly.


But secretary Tom was not about to be upstaged.

031She knew how to stay abreast of current trends.


Some women were forced to wear uniforms, so they had to assert their individuality with enormous glasses.  Three of these people are actually women.

034But let’s go out on a high note, with the cheery Loveboat-cruise director smile of Ms. Stade and the blonde wings of love about to give Ms. Steele lift-off into space.


And with that, we close the chapter on DPS.  Remember that it’s the end of May, if you’re inspection sticker is almost due.  You wouldn’t want to get ticketed.

Don’t Mess With DPS


Today’s post is Part II in the ongoing bliss that is discovering the Dept of Public Safety’s pictorial heritage.  Pictured above is a badass Texas Ranger in an armored vehicle.  As I lack a penis, I have no desire to commandeer said vehicle or even go near it.  I will speak for most ladies who have no desire to appropriate or operate any sort of tankylooking thing.  But those of you who do might want to take a little spin in it.

Police officers have a noble history of enforcing the law, which often means sucking the fun out of your good times.  I would have let this guy go, since his car is so boss, but they have quotas to fill.


And don’t try to outrun them; they will go all Ponch and Jon on your bippy.


The Texas Rangers are part of a major division within the Texas DPS, who investigate serious crimes.  They also will suck the wind out of a criminal’s sails.  Cross the border to nasty swampland-subpar-highway-system Louisiana if you want to play craps; there’s no gambling in Texas.


And weed is still illegal, too–no matter what the dreadheaded, tiedyed-shirt-wearing potheads would have you believe.  I don’t have glaucoma nor a criminal history, so I don’t get up close with Mary Jane, but I didn’t think it looked so much like a Charlie Brown Christmas tree.


And don’t think they’ll let you off with a warning.  This Amish guy just galloped in from Pennsylvania, and he is exhausted, so he won’t think twice about putting a bullet in your gut.    And he’s not the only one.


When Sergeant Guthrie smells something fishy, it is on.  It is SO on.


And Sergeant Hall?  Some say he’s certifiably insane, a bonafide 5150.  I heard he picks possums off the highway, and eats them snout and all.  Don’t sass him.  He may take you to a Mexican prison if he’s feeling ornery.  And that’s just for jaywalking.


And don’t let Officer Lowery fool you. Word on the street is he used to be the lethal injectioner at Huntsville.  He thought sterilizing needles was a waste of time.  So do I, for that matter.


Now look, they’re not all gruff.  Officers Turner & Powell run the night shift, so that might be the perfect time to rob a 7-11.  Just saying.


But you won’t run forever.  Justice will have its day.  They will see to it.  Once information is sent from the transceiver, all hope is gone.


And trust me, you do NOT want them sicking Investigator Padgett on your ass.  He’s a superhero, and I don’t mean his demon eyes.  His power is oft compared to that of Spiderman, only his wide lapel shoots out disco balls filled with elephant tranquilizer.  You don’t want to wake up from that sleep, ripe for interrogation.


Am I right or Amarillo?

You feelin' lucky, Punk?
You feelin’ lucky, Punk?

(All of the above is purely for humorous purposes and in no way meant to disrespect any officer of the law.  So please don’t sic Padgett on me…)

License & Registration Please


Memorial Day seems as fitting a day as ever to begin our weeklong (we’ll see about that) Texas Dept of Public Safety pictorial history retrospective, seeing as many officers lost their lives in the line of duty.  However, today’s focus is not on lost life, but on the superbadassness of the department from 1935-1980.  I realize this seems hyperspecialized, but these pics are a treasure trove of early law enforcement, as well as insight into the long-gone TWENTIETH CENTURY.  You will witness early outdated, inefficient ways of doing things, like searching for fingerprints by hand and how to confirm if someone is a doublecrossing liar.


See how people used to communicate with typing thingies and wirey boxes.



Experience the communications hub, the leader in advanced technology.


You will meet important characters, like Pop and Paul!



Shoot the breeze with Viola and Barbara, both fashioned from the hands of Jim Henson!


And FYI, Mr. Curb is not about to take any crap from you today.


So join me as we take a long stroll through the halls of public safety.  Drive safely!