The Police Station at 127-129 George Street was designed by James Barnet during his term as Colonial Architect (1862-1890). During his tenure Barnet oversaw the design of 155 police stations throughout the state, mostly located in regional towns and of a domestic scale reflective of their dual role as residences. The sandstone Police Station at 127-129 George Street is arguably the most elaborate of Barnet's Police Stations and is also one of his finest small scale buildings. The building is the earliest and most original of its type and includes a series of cells off a rear corridor. In the 1890s the Rocks police, based here, came under suspicion in the Inquiry into Chinese Gambling by the NSW Legislative Council's Commission of Inquiry.
The building has associations with Police Commissioners James Mitchell (1914-1929) and Walter Henry Childs (1930-35) who both served for many years at 127-129 George Street. Mitchell also served as the officer in charge during the Rocks Resumption period in the early 1900s. During World War II the building became the headquarters for the US Navy's Shore Patrol at a time when US warships, and their crews, were based in Sydney.