Sunday, April 26, 2015

What happened to Al Capone's health at Alcatraz?

According to Al Capone's prison records, Al contracted syphilis in his early twenties. The disease remained dormant until February 5, 1938.  

The following reports were sent to the then U.S. Attorney General Homer Cummings by James Bennett, Director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons, explaining the incident that caused Capone to be hospitalized.

Special thanks to the University of Virginia Library, Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections.

Reports to the Attorney General

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt & Al Capone’s Armored Cadillac

In 2014 I received emails asking me if I was aware of an Internet story that claimed FDR rode in Al Capone's armored Cadillac to declare war on Japan. According to the story, it was December 8, 1941. Japan had bombed Pearl Harbor the day before and the Secret Service felt the president needed an armored car to protect him on his ride to Capitol Hill.

The Secret Service is said to have had Al Capone's 1928 Cadillac in Washington, DC, at the time. The story Claims the IRS confiscated Capone's Cadillac after he was found guilty of tax evasion in Chicago.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

"Scarface" Al Capone: How did he get those scars?

Is this the man who put the scars on Al Capone's face? 

This March 28, 1940, (AP) story from the Evening Independent Massillon, a newspaper published in Ohio, seems questionable to me.

Although Capone's face was permanently scarred, the article claims that Capone overlooked his own injury. 

Capone is said to have become so impressed by Frank Galluccio’s "chivalry" in attacking him that he made him a lieutenant in his criminal organization. 

The last paragraph of the article refers to the story as a gang legend. However, nowhere is Galluccio quoted as saying that he put the scars on Capone’s face. 

Below is Capone's 1932 rap sheet (courtesy NARA, San Francisco) from when he began serving his sentence for income-tax evasion at Atlanta Penitentiary.