The 1929 St. Valentine's Day Massacre

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3 years ago

It was an ordinary day for couples who celebrate Valentines Day, but it would lead to a sinister plot as for rival gangs erupt violence during broad daylight in the streets of Chicago, Ilinois.

Alphonse Gabriel "Scarface" Capone

Alphonse Gabriel Capone (January 17, 1899 - January 25, 1947), nicknamed Scarface was the mastermind of the massacre. Born to Italian immigrant parents, during his teenage years he was part of the Five Points Gang in New York. In his twenties, he moved to Chicago, became a bodyguard for Johnny Torrio of the Chicago Outfit. It was the time of the U.S Prohibition on production, importation, transportation, and sale of alcoholic beverages from 1920 to 1933. Johnny's nature of business is they illegally supplied alcohol at that time. In January 1925, Johnny was returning from a shopping trip when he was shot several times in an assassination attempt, as he hands over the gang's operations to young Capone. At the age of 26, Al Capone became the new boss of the Chicago Outfit. When the prohibition ushered in by passage of the 18th Amendment in 1920, the earnings of American gangsters increased through bootlegging and speakeasies, including gambling and prostitution. Scarface's income was estimated to $60 million a year, and his net worth in 1927 was $100 million as he controls the criminal underworld of Chicago's rackets and ruthlessly gunning down his rivals.

What happened?

February 14, 1929. 10:30 a.m., Chicago, Illinois. 2 police officers who disguised themselves as part of Capone's gang, while 2 others are wearing a suit & tie armed with Thompson Sub Machine Guns and Revolvers as they walk through a garage in 2122 North Clark Street where the hideout of their rivals, the North Side Mob. As the disguised officers lined up 7 men against a wall confiscating their weapons, a few minutes later the submachine gunners fired out rapidly 70 to 90 rounds, and all went quiet. A minute later, the policemen emerged with the gunners with their hands up at gunpoint pretending they have captured the criminals.

The Victims?

7 men faced the wall and killed in cold-blood during Valentine's Day.

7 men with multiple gunshot wounds, 6 were dead:

  • Peter Gusenberg - a front-line enforcer of the North Side Gang.

  • Albert Kachellek - George's 2nd in command

  • Adam Heyer - bookkeeper and business manager

  • Reinhardt Schwimmer - an optician but abandoned his practice to gamble on horse racing and has connections with the gang.

  • Albert Weinshank - he managed several cleaning & dyeing operations for George.

  • John May - a mechanic working for the gang

One of the victims survived from 14 bullet wounds, Frank Gusenberg, Peter's brother and also an enforcer. He was questioned who did the massacre, he said "no one shot me" keeping the code of silence, but later died a few hours in the hospital.

The Aftermath?

"Massacre 7 of Moran Gang" as the headlines of the Chicago Daily News

It was intended to take down George "Bugs" Moran, boss of the North Side Gang as he was replaced by Hymie Weiss who was gunned down by Capone's enforcers on October 11, 1926. George was about to visit the garage but later changed his mind since there was a patrol roaming around near to his garage. Instead, he stayed in a coffee shop with one of his enforcers thinking of what he'll do next. Luckily, he survived the massacre suspecting Capone was the one behind the crime.

Al was on his residence in Florida during the massacre, as his notoriety increased making him "Public Enemy No. 1", he mocks his rival that he was the one behind the massacre. No one was ever brought to trial for the murders, even the murder weapon was under custody by the police. The 1929 massacre is still classed as an unsolved crime in history.

Sources:

Lead Image from https://www.denofgeek.com/culture/the-st-valentines-day-massacre-in-real-life-and-pop-culture/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8AOAk-TINZ0

https://www.chicagotribune.com/nation-world/chi-chicagodays-valentinesmassacre-story-story.html

https://www.britannica.com/event/Saint-Valentines-Day-Massacre

https://www.history.com/topics/crime/saint-valentines-day-massacre

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