How Did Fingerprinting Start?


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Through the knowledge of history it has been seen that Chinese used fingerprints for hundreds of years in various forms and for various purposes. The value of fingerprints for detecting criminals was realized by science only in quite recent years. Dr. Henry Faulds of England was the very first man in history to suggest that fingerprints can be used to identify criminals in 1880. Sir Francis Galton, an English scientist, established the fact that no two fingerprints were alike in 1892. He was the first man to set up a collection of fingerprint records. The British government became interested in this theory and ordered a commission to study the idea for the identification of criminals. Sir Edward Henry was one of the members of that commission who became the head of Scotland Yard later. Sir Henry also devised a system of classifying and filing fingerprints. The F.B.I has more than 100000000 fingerprint cards include fingerprints of those in the Armed Services and government employees. In this time all aliens have to be fingerprinted and many industries vital to the national defence require fingerprinting of their employees.

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