Peterborough Police History

George H. Johnston (1822-1885): Peterborough’s first police chief/chief constable.

  • He became the town policeman in 1870, and served right up until his death in 1885.
  • He was a heroic man and was the only policeman in the area for quite a while.
  • During his 15-year police career he investigated several murders. Chief Johnston was known for bravely arresting a man who murdered his wife in the kitchen of a house on Simcoe St.
  • Chief Johnston also investigated the murder of a man shot by a hotel owner in 1878.
  • In September 1881 a man was stabbed on George and Charlotte. It was George Johnston who courageously stepped up to work yet another challenging case.
  • George Johnston’s legacy lives on in Peterborough as he grew the community from a small, disjointed area to a place of wealth and justice.


Historic black and white group photograph of Peterborough Police Service Officers standing  in front of their motorcycle.