For thirteen violent months in the 1930s, John Dillinger and his gang swept through the Midwest. The criminals of the Depression robbed almost at will (the Indiana State Police had only 41 members, including clerks and typists). Dillinger's daring escapes-single-handed at Crown Point jail or through the withering machine gun fire of FBI agents at Little Bohemia Lodge-and his countless bank robberies excited the imagination of a despondent country. He eluded the lawmen of a half-dozen states and the growing power of the FBI, earning him the dubious honor of Public Enemy Number One and captivating Americans to the present day. His brief but significant career is vividly chronicled here in extraordinary detail, as is the entire outlaw era of Baby Face Nelson, Bonnie and Clyde, Ma Barker, and Machine Gun Kelly. The author conducted hundreds of interviews; his research took him through thirty-four states, into the cells where Dillinger was confined, and into every bank he robbed.
The Dillinger Days is the inside account of a desperate and determined war between the law and the lawless, a struggle that did not end until a unique set of circumstances led to Dillinger's bloody death outside a Chicago movie house.
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(210mm x 140mm x 22mm)
Da Capo Press Inc
Publisher: The Perseus Books Group
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US Kirkus Review »
When John ?? was released from an Indiana prison in 1933 after serving a nine year sentence for robbery, his intention to go straight seemed so sincere that his whole community was moved to help him. But while he was attending church and working at home with his father, he was also putting new prison-learned criminal skills to work robbing banks. This is the famed Dillinger's story, a compendium as well of the murderous doings of compatriots like Ma Barker, Pretty Boy Floyd, Bonnie Parker, the Barrow Brothers, and a host of other hip-shooting, car-stealing bank robbers who made underworld American history in the Depression. Dillinger's captures and consequent jail escapes escapades which led the public to call this public enemy a "Depression Robin Hood" ?? are in themselves some of the most exciting reading from the '30's. How he and other gang leaders formed their bands, how they resorted to plastic surgery and disguises to avoid ?? and how they finally met their ends by FBI coordination provide stark balance to the tale. Dillinger's own death in front of a theatre brings the reader to a driving climax to this brutal yet colorful book, which will run some interference from Dillinger by Robert Cromie, recently published by McGraw-Hill. (Kirkus Reviews)
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Author Biography - John Toland
John Toland is the author of many acclaimed books, including Adolf Hitler, The Last One Hundred Days, No Man's Land, In Mortal Combat: Korea 19501501953, and Infamy: Pearl Harbor and Its Aftermath.