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On July 24th, we celebrate National and International Private Investigators Day. This is a special day that honors the birthday of the first private investigator known as Eugene Francois Vidocq. Vidocq is well known for establishing the first known private detective agency in 1833. Let’s take a look at this special day and some interesting facts about famous investigators throughout history.

Eugene Francois Vidocq

Born on July 24th, 1775, Eugene Francois Vidocq had a rich job history doing everything from being a criminal and police informant to a private investigator and owning a PI agency. As the first known private detective agency, Vidocq only hired ex-criminals. His agency was frequently in trouble with the local law enforcement due to their illegal and questionable methods of handling cases. While his tactics and team of ex-criminals were questioned, Vidocq had a brilliant mind. He contributed significantly to the fields of ballistics, criminology, record keeping, undercover work, and crime scene investigations. Vidocq even inspired people to also become private investigators. The idea of the famous fictional character, Sherlock Holmes, is also thanks to the 18th century investigator, Vidocq. 

Allan Pinkerton

Allan Pinkerton is known for establishing the Pinkerton National Detective Agency in the U.S. Unlike Vidocq, Pinkerton used ethical practices for handling his business and private investigative work. His practices are still used by modern PIs today.

Kate Warne

In 1856, Kate Warne made history by becoming the first female private investigator in the United States. This was a groundbreaking event, especially since women could not even vote yet nor could they work in law enforcement until 1891 or investigation agencies until 1903. When Warne met Pinkerton, he thought she wanted a clerical job, which was common for women. However, Warne persuaded Pinkerton to give her a job as an investigator on the basis that women have excellent observational and attention to detail skills. She was assigned to a female detective bureau, which hired female detectives. Warne is well known for helping prevent an assassination attempt against Abraham Lincoln. Warne paved the way for other women to become private investigators too.

National and International Private Investigators Day

In October 1996, publisher and editor of PI magazine, Bob Mackowiak, recognized the first Private Investigators Day. Over ten years later, an Australian private investigator named Arthur Athas re-established this as an international holiday, honoring Vidocq’s date of birth. 

An interesting fact is that this holiday is written as 24/7 because most European countries write the day before the month and it represents the general hours that private investigators work. Indeed, private investigators may have to work long hours depending on the case they are handling. These men and women play a vital role in helping create safer communities and upholding the law. At PATRIOT Backgrounds and Investigations, we would like to give a big thank you to all the private investigators out there that are dedicated to helping their clients, local communities, and law enforcement. If you need help with a case, contact the best Florida private investigators today.