Al CaponeI: Al Capone was born in New York City in 1899. His father, Gabriel and his wife, Teresa, came to America in 1894. They brought their two kids, Vincenzo, and Raffaele.
In 1895 their third son was born, who they named Salvatore.II: The Capone family was nice and quit, Gabriel never hit the kids, he just “preached” to them and they’d listen. “..
.nothing about the Capone family was inherently disturbed, violent, or dishonest.” Gabriel became an American citizen in 1906, his children all had Italian names but for the outside world they’d have different names.III: After Al was born Gabriel moved the family to an apartment above his barbershop in Brooklyn.
This move would influence Al forever, he was exposed to other nationalities, Swedes, Irish, Germans, and Chinese lived in the neighborhood instead Italians as it had been. Education didn’t mean much for many in New York, after you got out of high school you’d probably get a job. Al had good grades until he entered 6th grade.
When he was fourteen he yelled at a teacher who hit him, he hit her back and was expelled from school, he never went to school again after that. About the same time that happened his family moved to a neighborhood that had a long lasting impression on him. This is where he met his first crime boss, Johnny Torrio and his future wife, Mae.IV: Johnny Torrio was a smart crime boss. He realized you needed brains and allies to survive. Many young boys worked for him, running errands mainly.
But he started to trust the young Al Capone and gave him larger jobs to do. Many kids were in gangs, wether it be gangs of nationality, Irish, Italian, German, or ones of religion, Jewish gangs. V: Al was a good kid, came home on time and helped the family. No one would have suspected Al of becoming a mob boss.
For awhile he worked at regular jobs, first a munitions factory then worked as a paper cutter. Frankie Yale was another crime boss except just the opposite of the “peaceful” Johnny Torrio. He built his gang off muscle. Yale opened a bar on Coney Island called the Havard Inn.
Johnny Torrio got Al a job working there as a bartender. VI: Capones job at the Harvard Inn was to be a bartender, a bouncer and even wait on tables. One day he was waiting on a young couple and he leaned over and said to the woman “Honey, you have a nice ass and I mean that as a compliment.” The man jumped up and slashed Al across the face three times before running off with his sister.
The man, Frank Gallucio talked to Lucky Luciano about it who then went to Frankie Yale. Al Capone was forced to apologize and after that Yale took him under his wing. Capone later met a woman named Mae Coughlin, an Irish girl who was two years older then the 19 year old Al Capone.
On December 4, 1918 Albert Francis Capone was born. With a wife and one son Al moved to Baltimore to start a legitimate career. Later that year Als father died of Heart Disease; this was the end of Als legitimate career.
Johnny Torrio had moved his business to Chicago and took Al with him. VII: Chicago was a perfect place to build a criminal empire. “Big Jim” Colosimo was the kingpin in Chicago, he and his wife Victoria Moresco ran brothels and night clubs. As their empire grew, Big Jim brought in Johnny Torrio to help. Torrio expanded their business without attracting attention.
Torrio was serious about his business, he didnt drink, swear, smoke, or cheat on his wife, Ann. Big Jim divorced his wife and married a young singer. Word got back to Brooklyn and Frankie Yale jumped on the opportunity. He went to Chicago and on May 11, 1920 assassinated Big Jim Colosimo in his nightclub. The police found who the murderer was but the only witness to the murder wouldnt testify against Yale. Yale failed in trying to take Big Jims empire and Johnny Torrio took over the multi million dollar business he built for Big Jim. With Prohibition in full swing Torrio made money off selling alcohol, whorehouses, gambling joints and speakeasies.
VIII: In 1921 Torrio brought Al Capone into his business and made him manager of Four Deuces, Torrios headquarters. Around this time Al became friends Jack Guzik, a Jewish man who would become like an older brother to him. Al bought a house in a nice neighborhood just outside of town. He brought his wife, mother, and siblings. IX: The city government was nominally in the hands of an earnest reformer, corruption and bribes became more complicated. Torrio and Capone decided to buy the government and police department of a suburb out of the city, Cicero.
After opening up a brothel in Cicero Torrio took his mother back to Italy, leaving Capone in charge. Capone gave his brother Frank the task of opening a working class brothel called Stockade. Al focused on gambling and took a gambling house and a horse track. Al was unopposed for most of this except for a journalist for the Cicero Tribune. The journalists editorials were effective enough to threaten candidates who were backed by Capone.
The Chicago chief of police rounded up seventy nine police officers with shotguns and sent them to protect election workers. Frank Capone had just finished a deal when the police dressed in plain clothes showed up and killed him. Al was furious and kidnapped officials; he had won his victory but paid a high price. Al had thrown his brother a huge funeral; the flowers alone cost $20,000. X: “While Capone’s name was often linked with these murders, the fact was that there were many other gangsters responsible that Capone and Torrio had tried to keep in line.
” Dion O’Banion was one example, a florist and bootlegger. O’Banion was known for his bizarre behavior such as gunning down a person in the middle of a crowd, he once shot a person in Four Dueces which threw Capone into a murder investigation. Two Torrio-Capone allies were the the Genna Brothers and Dion who always had problems with each other. Conflicts arose between the two and soon after O’Banion offer to sell his brewery to Torrio so we could leave for Colorado.
The brewery was raided and Torrio ended up in jail, O’Banion then bragged about how he tricked Torrio. Mike Merlo, the head of the Unione Sicilana in Chicago, died of Cancer and a huge funeral was held. Dion was the florist for gangs so he had a large role.
Two days after Merlo died Dion O’Banion was shot to death in his florist shop by 3 people, two were suspected to be assassin’s the other was suspected to be Frankie Yale who was intown for Mike Merlo’s funeral. The police had no idea who had killed O’Banion, but one of Dion’s close friends, Hymie Weiss, knew who it was and wanted revenge.XI: Hymie Weiss and Bugs Moran attempted many times to assassinate Torrio and Capone. Torrio left Chicago and went to Arkansas for fear of being killed. While Torrio was gone Weiss and Moran tried a dozen times to assassinate Capone, but failed everytime. The day Torrio came back he went on a shopping trip with his wife, when he got back Bugs Moran and Hymie Weiss fired at the car, thinking he was still in it, when the realized he wasn’t they fired at him but ran out of ammunition. Torrio was shot four times but four months in the hospital and he lived, he then went to jail after pleading guilty to the brewery raid.
Torrio wanted out of his life of violence and in March 1925 handed everything over to Capone.XII: “He was a major force now in the Chicago underworld.” Al’s friend from the newspaper told Al to behave like a “prominent figure”, goto sporting events and operas. Al and Frankie Yale met in New York to work out Whiskey deals, since smuggling Whiskey in from Canada was easier to get to New York. Yale invited Al to a Chirstmas party and got word that Richard “Peg-Leg” Lonergan was going to crash it.
When he and his gang arrived at the club at 3:00 AM Al gav the signal and in an instant they were dead. XIII: Everything was going fine for Capone until the prosecutor Billy McSwiggin showed up again. Billy McSwiggin was going to a gambling joint of Capone’s, while on their way there the car broke down and they hitched a ride with a bootlegger who was enemies with Capone. McSwiggin and one of the bootleggers were in one of Capone’s bar’s and when they came were gunned down but Capone’s henchmen. Though Capone was never convicted everyone knew he did it.
IVX: Al then spent three months in hiding after 300 police officers were looking him. He surrender and was brought to trial, there was an insufficent amount of evidence to convict him, he was a free man. Al then setup an agreement with other gangs that there would be no more killings, for two months everything went fine, until Al’s friend Theodore Anton was murdered.
Al thought even more about retirement after this.XV: When Capone came back from the West coast six police officers were there to make things uncomfortable for him. Capone left with his family for a warmer climate in Miami, he bought a large house once owned by brewer Clarence Busch. Capone realized his whiskey from Frankie Yale had been hijacked too many times and figured it was by Yale.
XVI: Frankie Yale was gunned down when he was driving, corned to the curb and shot. Capone went into Rackeetering when he realized Prohibition wouldn’t last. He ran into the same people from before, Bugs Moran being one of them. He had twice tried to kill Al’s friend, Jack McGurn. Jack told Capone something had to be done about him.XVII: Jack McGurn was given leadership of the assassination.
He hired seven people, two who had been used to kill Frankie Yale. The plan was to setup a bootlegging deal, the assassin’s would dress up in police uniforms and stage a raid. The plan went well and the “police officers” killed all the men including Gusenberg brothers who had tried to murder McGurn.
The only problem was the main target, Bugs Moran, wasn’t there, he was late for the meeting and saw the raid and left. Capone was in Florida while this happened and Jack McGurn had an airtight alibi. This event would be known as the St. Valentine’s Day MassacreXVIII: “At once I directed that all of the Federal agencies concentrate upon Mr. Capone and his allies.”-Herbert Hoover. Two of Capone’s colleagues had been causing Al problems.
He invited his colleagues to dinner, after they were done he killed them, using the old tradition, “Hospitality before execution.”IXX: After Herbert Hoover took office he wanted Andrew Mellon, Secretary of the Treasury, to put something on Capone. He wanted to get income tax evasion and find evidence for Prohibition violations. Gangsters from all over met in Atlantic City and wanted Capone to give a his Chicago empire to Torrio to keep violence and rivalry to a minimum. XX: After Al left Atlantic City he went a movie in Philadelphia, when he came out he was arrested for carrying a concealed weapon. Since he was in jail, Al gave leadership to his brother Ralph, Jack Guzik and Frank Nitti. Later that year Ralph was indicted on tax evasion charges, he wasn’t smart about covering up his money like Al was.
“The Untouchables” had enough evidence to get permission from judges to take down Capone’s breweries. The government realized they need a man inside and sent Michael J. Malone and another agent. XXI: Records from a raid on Hawthorne Hotel showed financial operations of the Hawthorne Smoke Shop. Al Capone opened a soup kitchen for those who lost their jobs in the great depression to try and restore his image in 1930.XXII: The Untouchables had taken over forty-five of Capone’s trucks and raided tons of breweries. Wiretaps proved how bad things were going, a big blow was when a brewery was raided that produced 20,000 gallons a day.
XXIII: Capone was arrested and brought to trial. He didn’t worry too much since he had bribed the jury, the judge found out about this and changed the jury so it would be a fair trial. Capone was convicted of a few counts and was sentenced to 11 years in prison and a $50,000 fine. http://www.crimelibrary.com/gangsters_outlaws/mob_bosses/capone/index_1.html?sect=15