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Capone's Cornfields: The Mob in the Illinois Valley
Residents of small towns in New England like to say "George Washington slept here," while citizens of the Illinois Valley like to say "Al Capone slept here." As you can see, things are different in the Land of Lincoln. Scarface might or might not have laid his head to rest in the Illinois Valley - a region 70 miles southwest of Chicago - but there is evidence that lesser ...more
Published December 17th 2003 by Booksurge Publishing
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I'll see you Dakota Diaspora and raise you Capone's Cornfields. Not very good, and execrably written, but if you want to see the dark side of the Lebensbergers laid bare - and who doesn't - this is the only place to do so, outside of the files of the Chicago Tribune in 1932. The whole story of the dapper little German-Jewish Elgin, Illinois bootlegger who, thanks to the magic of goychasing, is now mischpoches with Jimmy Stewart.
This was rather fascinating in a troubling way because it contained true stories about people who lived and did their nefarious deeds in small towns in Central Illinois with which I was very familiar. In fact, I lived and worked in Streator when I first got out of college, and I spent a lot of time in Ottawa, and had family in LaSalle/Peru. Dan Churney tells about people who were on the wrong side of the law in the Illinois Valley, mostly in LaSalle County, during the time of prohibition when ...more