All Ages - Family Fun Event
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After the bloody killing of 7 of the Moran gang, the garage became an unofficial memorial, and the brick wall where the 7 were executed was riddled with machine gun bullets. It became a popular tourist attraction for a time.
Twenty years later, In 1949, the front half of the garage was converted into an antique furniture storage business by people new to Chicago and didn't know what had happened there. Unfortunately more tourists than customers came and they eventually gave up and moved on. In 1967, the old building was torn down, but the infamous wall of bricks was saved and used in another night club, built into a wall of the men's rest room. Other bricks were smuggled out by workmen tearing down the building.
A fenced off lawn, which belongs to a nearby nursing home, was put in where the garage once stood, with 5 trees planted on site. The tree in the middle of the lawn marks the place where the infamous brick wall once stood.
HISTORY OF AL CAPONE
Al Capone, Chicago's most powerful, ruthless gangster in the 1920s era, was really a Brooklyn transplant who migrated to Chicago with his best buddy and future cohort in Chicago crime, Johnny Torrio who was originally hired by his Chicago mobster uncle, Big Jim Collisimo. Johnny Torrio and Al Capone made ambitious plans to take over the black market booze market, but not by fair market competition. (They missed taking economics in school because they dropped out at the 6th grade).
After knocking off Uncle Big Jim Collisimo, Al and Johnny waged a bloody war against other mobs in Chicago, resulting in 500 deaths by the time Capone was through in 1930. When Johnny was nearly killed in 1925, he retired, leaving a 30 million dollar empire in the capable hands of Al Capone at the age of 26! Al Capone had 1000 gunmen, half the police department on his payroll, as well as local politicians, state attorneys, and law makers. So whenever he had to conduct business, many just looked the other way; that is until he crossed the line on February, 14th, 1929 with the St. Valentines Day Massacre.
While Capone was far away enjoying life in Florida, he put this job in the capable, murderous hands of "Machine Gun" McGurn, who was given complete control of the hit. He planned it but stayed away from the event himself, with an air-tight alibi. "Talented out of towners" were recruited for this hit; Fred "Killer" Burke, James Ray, John Scalise and Albert Anselmi, Joseph Lolordo and Harry and Phil Keywell from Detroit's Purple Gang.
DESCRIPTION OF INCIDENT
On the morning of February 14, 1929, a group of Bugs Moran's gangsters were waiting in this garage, for a truck full of stolen liquor from Detroit to arrive. Johnny May, Frank and Pete Gusenburg, Bugs Moran's brother-in-law, James Clark, Adam Heyer, Al Weinshank and a gangster wanna-be, optometrist Reinhardt Schwimmer, who learned too late that it was dangerous hanging with men on the wrong side of the law.
As they waited, a police car pulled up outside. (Uh oh, this wasn't good!) Five men, three dressed as policemen exited and walked into the garage with machine guns ready. All seven men were lined up against the brick wall and shot many times from the machine guns. While Capon's gunmen wiped out the Northern Chicago gang, they missed Bugs Moran, who was late to the party. Bugs Moran later accused Al Capone of this vicious hit. Though there wasn't any evidence to directly link Al Capone to this event, people believed Bugs.
The location of this brutal mass killing has been haunted for years, the bricks are said to bring bad luck, and Al Capone himself saw his reign come to an end and was haunted by an entity until he died in Florida.
1) The location of this brutal mass killing has been haunted for years
a) Unusual light and mists have been reported.
b) Male voices are heard when no one else is around.
c) Sounds of screaming men and machine-gun fire are still heard by the living passing by this place
d) Sensitive people who stand in front of the fenced lawn, or walk by it, develop a sense of real fear and so do animals.
2) The bricks are said to bring bad luck.
a) The theory is that the bricks soaked in all this powerful negative energy from the killings. Legend has it that after the nightclub outlived its purpose, the bricks were taken out and sold individually for 1000 dollars each. But many of the bricks that were sold were given back because the new owners suffered a rash of bad luck, so the story goes.
b) Others say that the bricks were never sold individually but were kept together in a packed box, numbered, with a diagram as to how to put the wall back together, with the hopes that a single buyer would buy the whole wall of bricks. It never sold; not yet anyway.
3) Capone himself got his just desserts. Unfortunately for Al Capone, consequences resulted as a result of this planned massacre, carried out by hired gunmen.
a) People were repulsed with this bloody mass killing, and a lot of political pressure resulted in nailing Capone for tax evasion, landing him in prison, sentenced to 11 years of hard time, winding up on the rock, Alcatraz. Though he only stayed in until 1939, he didn't always have both oars in the water, which forced him into retirement.
b) The entity of Moran's brother-in-law, James Clark immediately started to haunt Capone who was living in his Florida house at the time of the massacres. He tried to send the entity to the other side via a medium in 1931, but it didn't work. After Capone, broken in spirit and mind, returned to Florida after being released from prison, the entity reappeared and haunted Al until he died.
c) Al Capone was buried at Mount Carmel Cemetery. It is said that he sometimes appears to the disrespectful visitors who come to visit his family's plot.
Mount Carmel Cemetery Web Site
The H.C.P.R.I. paranormal investigators plan to do a full investigation during the Spring of 2006.
All Ages - Family Fun Event
Saint Valentine's Day Massacre PHOTOS
Mount Carmel is one of Chicago's finest graveyards. It is located in west suburban Hillside, across the street from Queen of Heaven. Mt Carmel is the oldest Catholic cemetery in the western part of the Archdiocese of Chicago.
The vast majority of persons buried here are Italian. Italian traditions include statuary, and photographs on the monument, and private mausoleums. There are over 400 private family mausoleums in Mt. Carmel, more than any other cemetery in the area. Italian immigrants in Chicago preserved their culture, and Mount Carmel has a wonderful Old-World feel.
The most popular attraction is the Bishops' mausoleum, which received over 50,000 visitors in the two months after the death of Cardinal Bernardin in October 1996. But to many, Mt. Carmel is equally famous for the graves of Chicago's notorious gangsters of the 1920s - including Al Capone, best known of them all.