Famous detectives include Albert Seedman, Thomas Byrnes and Allan Pinkerton, reports the John Jay College of Criminal Justice. Byrnes became a police officer in New York City in 1863, according to the National Law Enforcement Museum. Byrnes’ reputation as an investigator was sealed when he solved the robbery of the Manhattan Savings Bank, which occurred in 1878. Authorities recovered millions of dollars in stolen cash. After serving as chief of detectives, Byrnes became New York's superintendent of police in 1892.
In 1886, Thomas Byrnes authored "Professional Criminals In America," says the National Law Enforcement Museum. The book featured photographs of known criminals, along with details about their preferred criminal methods. The pictures were taken from Byrnes' "rogues gallery," an innovative photographic database Byrnes assembled himself, which featured over 7,000 photos. In a time when criminals could change their names and start new lives with ease, resources of this type were highly useful for investigators. Byrnes claimed that the gallery helped in the arrest of over 3,000 criminals in four years.
Albert Seedman served as the NYPD's chief of detectives during the early 1970s, says the New York Times. Seedman's term occured during a tumultuous time for New York City. With a prestigious academic background, Seedman was a modernizing force within his department.