John Dillinger: The Gangster In The 1920's

1323 Words6 Pages

The early 1900s was the beginning of the prohibition. With the ban of the distribution of all alcohol came the start of organized crime. Many people helped launch the Gangster Era. One in particular became one of the more notorious to do so. His name is John Dillinger. Professional bank robber, expert escape artist, and an all around dangerous gangster. He was one of the biggest contributors to the Gangster Era of the 1920s and 1930s. He was seen as a hero in the reason that he stole the money from big companies and corporations; the same companies that took advantage of low income citizens. Even though he was extremely dangerous and violent, the life of crime made him very prosperous and wealthy.

Dillinger's early life is what shaped his …show more content…

His gang was involved in many shootouts with the law, including police officers and FBI agents. Dillinger himself was responsible for at least 10 murders, including a sheriff and innocent bystanders ( He was charged with the murder of sheriff William O' Malley on January 25, 1934 ( The gang terrorized the Midwest, robbing banks, police arsenals, staging jail breaks, and other rarely seen crimes by this time. One of their many shootouts occurred when FBI agents got wind of a possible hideout being used by Dillinger. This hideout, the Hellman's apartment, was compromised when the FBI showed up. The result was a gunfight. This shootout involved one of the gang members, Homer Van Meter, and the agents. Van Meter managed to escape by forcing a truck driver out of his truck and using it as a getaway …show more content…

Although being notorious and pursued by many investigators, he spent little time behind bars. This was because he was expertly evasive. When he was captured, he managed to break out. He gained a lot of attention for being skilled at jail breaks. With mass publicity came the increasingly high chance of being identified. The FBI appointed Melvin Purvis to the task of capturing Dillinger and his gang. To make sure he wasn’t caught, he turned to plastic surgery.Dillinger was one of the first to use the painful and time consuming procedure. Altering his appearance made it easier to evade the FBI on many occasions. One surgeon presented the option of fingerprint obliteration. The operation is painful, but would allow him to go undetected. Dillinger decided he would go through with this and it proved to be successful. Not too long after, President Hoover ordered surgeons to report whenever they obliterate someone's fingerprints ( After an eight and a half year sentence, Dillinger robbed a bank in Bluffon, Ohio. He was arrested on September 22 and awaited trial in a jail in Lima, Ohio. Four of Dillinger's companions broke him out while posing as officers. After detection, the men shot an officer and left him to die. On another occasion, Dillinger's plans for a prison break were found. He rejected all ownership of the plan. Four days later the same plans were used to help 8 of Dillinger's friends

More about John Dillinger: The Gangster In The 1920's

Open Document