From NKAA, Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (main entry)

Whedbee, Bertha P.

(born: 1876  -  died: 1960) 

Bertha Whedbee is considered the first African American woman police officer to be hired by the Louisville (KY) Police Department, March 22, 1922. Whedbee had campaigned for the position by circulating a petition that was signed by voters. Her employment came with the stipulation that she work only with members of her race.

Whedbee was born in West Virginia and was the wife of Dr. Ellis D. Whedbee (1863-1940, born in North Carolina). The couple married in 1898 and lived at 2832 West Chestnut Street in Louisville, according to the 1900 U.S. Federal Census.

For more see the Louisville Division of Police, by M. O. Childress, Sr.; and "Louisville Police Department," by M. O. Childress in The Encyclopedia of Louisville, by J. E. Kleber.


Cited in this Entry

NKAA Source: Louisville Division of Police : history & personnel
NKAA Source: Encyclopedia of Louisville

Related Entries Citing this Entry

NKAA Entry:  African American Police Women (Louisville, KY)
NKAA Entry:  Givens, Mrs. Fanny Rosalind Hicks and James Edward Givens
NKAA Entry:  Red Cross Hospital and Nurse Training Department (Louisville, KY)
NKAA Entry:  Howard University Club of Kentucky (Louisville, KY)

Cite This NKAA Entry:

“Whedbee, Bertha P.,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed January 26, 2021,

Last modified: 2020-09-21 16:15:46