“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Foley in Baldwin County, Alabama — The American South (East South Central)

Cobb's Light

Cobb's Light Marker image. Click for full size.
By David J Gaines, January 14, 2012
1. Cobb's Light Marker
Inscription. 1942, Benjamin DeWitt Cobb, more affectionately known as “B.D.”, was appointed as the lone police officer for the town of Foley. In 1943, another officer was hired and B.D. was appointed as the first Chief of Police. This marked the founding of the Foley Police Department. B.D. Cobb served as Police Chief until 1971 when he resigned due to failing health. He remained with the Police Department for several more years, serving as a Captain.

Early in Chief Cobb’s tenure, the Town of Foley entered into an innovative agreement with John M. Snook, the founder of the Gulf Telephone Company, in an effort to quicken police response time. A light was erected atop the building on the southwest corner of this intersection. Citizens in need of police service would call the Gulf Telephone Co. operator who served as the first Police Dispatcher. The operator would then activate the light. Chief Cobb, who was normally on foot patrol or sitting on a park bench near this location, would see the light and go to the nearby phone where the operator would relay the details of the call.

The light quickly became known as “Cobb’s Light”. Later in his tenure, Chief Cobb was instrumental in establishing the first radio communications for a municipal police department in Baldwin County. “Cobb’s Light” was no
Cobb's Light Marker image. Click for full size.
By David J Gaines, January 14, 2012
2. Cobb's Light Marker
longer needed. However, it stayed atop the building until the mid 1990’s when it was removed during a roofing project. Regrettably, the light was lost.

The light you see is a replica of “Cobb’s Light” and was replaced in 2008. It serves as a reminder of the early days of Police service and as a memorial to the dedicated service of Chief B.D. Cobb, the first of “Foley’s Finest”.
Location. 30° 24.411′ N, 87° 41.019′ W. Marker is in Foley, Alabama, in Baldwin County. Marker is on Alabama Route 59, on the left when traveling south. Touch for map. The marker is located in a park at the intersection of AL Hwy 59 and US Hwy 98. Marker is in this post office area: Foley AL 36536, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 11 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. City of Foley Camellia Walk (within shouting distance of this marker); City of Foley (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Springs (approx. 5.1 miles away); Magnolia Springs, Alabama (approx. 5.2 miles away); The Charles Swift Family / Swift Coles Historic Home (approx. 7.1 miles away); Vicinity of Salt Works and Camp Anderson (approx. 8 miles away); Daphne United Methodist Church (approx. 8.7 miles away); Orange Beach, Alabama (approx. 10.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Foley.
Categories. Charity & Public Work
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on February 4, 2012, by David J Gaines of Pinson, Alabama. This page has been viewed 972 times since then and 82 times this year. Last updated on March 16, 2015, by J. Makali Bruton of Querétaro, Mexico. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on February 4, 2012, by David J Gaines of Pinson, Alabama. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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