"MACHINE GUN" JACK McGURN KILLED – A favorite of Al Capone, "Machine Gun" Jack McGurn is believed to have planned the St. Valentine's Day Massacre on February 14, 1929. On St. Valentine's day in 1936 while McGurn was bowling in the second-floor Avenue Recreation Bowling Alley at 805 N. Milwaukee at Chicago Ave., he was shot and killed by two men with machine guns. They left a note near his body that read:
You've lost your job,
You've lost your dough.
You're jewels and handsome houses,
But things could be worse, you know,
You haven't lost your trousers.
UPDATE – The building where McGurn was killed was still there in 1991. 805 N. Milwaukee.


ST. VALENTINE'S DAY MASSACRE CAR – On February 22, 1929, a fire broke out in a garage behind a house at 1723 N. Wood Street. Inside the garage, firemen found a black Cadillac touring car which had been partly demolished with an acetylene torch and a hacksaw.The Cadillac was later identified as the car used in the St. Valentine's Day Massacre on north Clark Street just eight days before.

CIRCUS GANG HEADQUARTERS – The Circus Cafe at 1857 W. North Avenue was the headquarters of the Circus gang in 1929. The gang, a subsidiary of the Capone Syndicate was led by Claude "Screwy" Maddox. Members included Tony "Joe Batters" Accardo, "Tough Tony" Capezio, and Vincenzo De Mora, who later became known as "Machine Gun" Jack McGurn.It was from here that the black Cadillac carrying the killers in the St. Valentine's Day Massacre left for north Clark Street. 1857 North Ave.

CAPONE GANGSTER KILLED
– In 1929, gangster Patsy Lolordo and his wife Aleina, lived here on the top floor of a three-story building that he owned at 1921 North Ave. On the afternoon of January 9, 1929 as Lolordo, a friend of Al Capone, entertained three men friends in the living room, Aleina, who was in the kitchen, heard shots. She rushed into the room and found Patsy lying dead before the fireplace with eleven bullets in him. 1921 North Ave.
UPDATE – The killers were later identified as James Clark, and Pete and Frank Gusenberg of the Moran gang. A month later, all three were killed in the St. Valentine's Day Massacre.

MIKE TODD'S FIRST JOB
– While in the sixth grade, producer Mike Todd got his first full-time job at a drugstore here on the corner of Division and Wood. He began as an errand boy and was soon promoted to soda jerk. He took up the study of pharmacy while here and in less than a year he passed the state pharmaceutical exam. At age thirteen, he was the youngest person to win an assistant pharmaceutical license in Illinois. At Division and Wood.

HOME OF MIKE TODD – Mike Todd helped his parents buy and restore a house here at 2034 LeMoyne in 1922. Todd was only fifteen but he was already running a school for bricklayers from here. His Grandmother Goldbogen was still living here in the 1940s. 2034 LeMoyne.

MIKE ROYKO'S BLUE SKY LOUNGE – Chicago Tribune columnist Mike Royko's mother owned the Blue Sky Lounge here at 1452 N. Western in 1943 when he was eleven years old. 1452 N. Western.

KNUTE ROCKNE TULEY HIGH STAR – Notre Dame's legendary football coach, Knute Rockne, went to school here at the Northwest Division High School in the 1920s. The school was later renamed Tuley High. He was a sports star while here. Producer Mike Todd quit after his first year at Tuley in the late 1930s. Saul Bellow, 1976 Nobel Prize winner for literature also went to school here. Tuley High was located between Oakley and Claremont, and Potomac and Hirsch.

PANCZKO'S JOY CLUB – John Panczko, brother of Pops, Butch and Peanuts, owned the Joy Club Tavern here at 2532 North Ave in the 1950s. Butch and Peanuts hung out here. The corner building is still there. 2532 North Ave.

HOME OF THE PANCZKO'S – Pops, Butch, and Peanuts Panczko lived here at 2648 Iowa with their mother and sister in the 1940s and 1950s. 2648 North Ave.

BIRTHPLACE OF "BABY FACE" NELSON – Gangster George "Baby Face" Nelson was born (1908) and raised here at 942-44 N. California.

PANCZKO GANG HANGOUT – Butch and Peanuts Panczko and Steve Tomaras hung out here at the New Crystal restaurant at 2749 North Ave. in the 1940s and 50s. Steve's mother and father owned and ran the restaurant. New development is now on the site. 2749 North Ave.

DILLINGER HIDEOUT – John Dillinger, Harry Pierpont, Evelyn Frechette and Mary Kinder hid out here in an apartment in December, 1933. The building is still there at 1850 Humboldt Boulevard.

DILLINGER GANG HIDEOUT – Several members of the John Dillinger gang his out here in an apartment in 1933. 1740 Humboldt Boulevard.

DILLINGER IN HUMBOLDT PARK – In 1933, John Dillinger used to take walks in Humboldt Park while he was hiding out in apartments on Humboldt Boulevard. He usually entered the park at the corner of North Avenue and Kedzie.

AUTHOR OF THE WIZARD OF OZ – L. Frank Baum, author of "The Wizard of Oz," lived here in 1899. On Sunday afternoons, the entire Baum family would ride their bikes to Humboldt Park. After a basket picnic they would lie on the grass or stroll around and talk with neighbors while they listened to the music from the bandstand. At home in the evenings, Baum would often sing popular songs and accompany himself on the piano while his sons and his wife Maud joined in with violins and mandolins. Baum wrote "The Emerald City" and revised "The Wizard of Oz while here. The Wizard of Oz was printed for the first time while he lived here. They moved out in 1903. Their home was on the southeast corner o Humboldt Blvd. and Wabansia. A new building is now on the site.


WIFE GROUND UP IN SAUSAGE PLANT – In 1878, Adolph Louis Luetgert's sausage factory was located at the corner of Diversey and Hermitage in the German neighborhood of Lakeview. In the 1880s, Luetgert, a widower, married Louisa Bicknese of Kankakee and she moved into his home on Hermitage in back of the factory, which was on Diversey. Louisa could not satisfy his insatiable sexual tastes, so Luetgert had a variety of lovers, including Louisa's maid, a longtime mistress, and a barkeeper, Mrs. Agathia Tosch, whose establishment was located near the sausage factory. Luetgert, morose and arrogant, fancied himself as a special gift to women. In 1897, Louisa, 42, was about at the end of her rope with his tomcatting. After many angry confrontations, Luetgert decided to kill her. On March 24,1897, the 275-pound Luetgert strangled his 115-pound wife and dumped her body into a huge vat that contained quicklime and acid. The quicklime and acid did not eat away all the flesh from her bones, so after an hour or two, he placed what remained of her into a sausage-curing vat and turned up the heat to 200 degrees. What little that was left of her, he threw into the boiler furnace in the engine room. Satisfied that there was nothing left, Luetgert went in the house, washed up and ate breakfast. The next day, an employee noticed a slime-like substance on the floor. He placed it in a barrel and dumped it by the nearby railroad tracks.
When relatives of Mrs. Luetgert reported that she was missing, the police talked to employees, who told them of the slime and glue that they had found. When the police opened one of the vats, they found it full of brownish fluid. After the vat was drained, they found several pieces of bone and two gold rings. One of them was a wedding band with the initials "L. L." on it. Luetgert was arrested for the murder of his wife.
UPDATE – Luetgert was tried twice for the murder of Louisa. The first trial ended in a hung jury but he was found guilty in the second trial and sentenced to life in prison. He died of a heart attack in the Joliet State Penitentiary in 1911. For years after, the kids in the neighborhood would sing; "He ground her up into sausage meat, and Luetgert was his name."The large brick plant was located on the south side of Diversey just west of Hermitage.

THE RAGGED STRANGER MURDER CASE – When Carl Wanderer, 32, and Ruth Johnson, 20, got married in September of 1919, they moved in with her parents here at 4732N. Campbell. Carl had just been discharged from the Army where he was a war hero. Just before Christmas, Ruth told Carl she was pregnant but he didn't show any happiness of the news. Instead, he fell into sullen moods and rarely spoke. This went on for several months until the night of June 21, 1920 when Carl and Ruth were returning from a movie. They didn't notice the man who followed them into the dark vestibule of their apartment building. When the stranger fired several shots at the couple, Carl pulled out his service automatic and emptied the clip in the direction of the intruder. Fourteen bullets were fired in a space of a few seconds. Ruth fell to the floor with two bullets in her. Carl went berserk with rage, smashing his gun and fists against a man dressed in rags who was also on the floor, shot full of holes. Ruth lived just long enough to whisper "My baby . . . my baby is dead." The stranger later died in Ravenswood Hospital. He had just $3.80 in his pocket. Carl was praised by the people of Chicago for his bravery.
– A few days later, reporter Ben Hecht of the Chicago Daily News sat at his desk looking at a picture of the two guns used in the shooting. One was Carl's army issued gun and the other belonged to the dead stranger. Something was not right. Both guns were identical. Over at the Chicago Examiner, reporter Charles MacArthur also noticed that the identical guns looked suspicious. A check of the stranger's gun, by the pair, revealed that it had been purchased by a Peter Hoffman. Hoffman told MacArthur that he sold the gun several years before to a man name Fred Wanderer. Fred was Carl Wanderer's cousin. A few days later, Hecht interviewed Carl in his apartment here on Campbell. While Carl left the room, Hecht found some incriminating letters Wanderer had written . . . to a man. Love letters of deep devotion. Hecht then realized that the war hero was a homosexual. Hecht and MacArthur went to the police with the letters and their suspicions. Carl was brought in for questioning. When confronted with the evidence of the gun and letters, he broke down and confessed to both killings. Carl told police that he had always been a homosexual and married Ruth for her money. When Ruth began to doubt his war record, he went to skid row and met a drifter named Al Watson. He told Watson that he would pay him to stage a hold-up in which he would hand a gun to Watson when the couple entered the vestibule and when Ruth turned on the light, he would floor him with a punch. Watson would run away and once again Carl would be a hero to his wife. Watson thought it was a harmless way to make a few dollars, and agreed. That night in the vestibule, Wanderer did not hand the gun to Watson. Instead he kept both guns and fired at both his wife and Watson. After they had fallen, he fired several more shots into them to make sure they were dead.
– After two sensational trials, Wanderer was sentenced to death by hanging. As Wanderer stood on the gallows on March 19, 1921, he threw back his head and began to sing "Dear Old Pal O' Mine." Carl was singing when the hangman placed the black shroud on his head and lowered the rope to his neck. His pathetic voice sang on behind the mask. The trap door opened and he shot to an instant death. MacArthur turned to Hecht and said, "You know Ben, that son-of-a-bitch" should have been a song-plugger." Humorist Alexander Woolcott, who also witnessed the hanging, was heard to say, " Wanderer deserved hanging for his voice alone."
UPDATE – Ben Hecht went on to become a novelist, playwright and a top Hollywood screenwriter. Charles MacArthur also became a top Hollywood screenwriter and married actress Helen Hayes. The pair co-authored the plays The Front Page, and Twentieth Century.

RIVERVIEW PARK – Opened in 1903-04, the 74-acre Riverview Park was the world's largest amusement park. It had over 100 rides and attractions with two miles of paved midways, seven roller coasters including the famous "Bobs," a 200-foot parachute jump, water chutes, boat rides on the Chicago River, and a 70-horse merry-ground. It was located on the northwest corner of Belmont and Western.
UPDATE – The park was closed in 1967 and torn down shortly after. Everything was destroyed except the 70-horse Merry-go-Round. It is now in Six Flags in Atlanta, Ga. The distortion mirrors from Aladdin's Castle fun house are in a dance club in Palatine.The site is now home to Devry Institute of Technology, a police station, and a shopping center.

LANE TECH HIGH SCHOOL – Lane Tech, one of the largest school buildings in the world, was built to accommodate 9,000 students. the murals in the cafeteria and at the auditorium entrance were painted by the Federal Art Project. One of the students here in the 1930s was Frank Lo Vecchio. He later added an i to Lane and became singer Frankie Laine. The school is on the southwest corner of Belmont and Western.

JOHN DILLINGER HIDEOUT HOTEL – Dillinger stayed here several times at the Bel Rey Hotel at 3254 N. Racine.


DILLINGER HAS PLASTIC SURGERY – On May 27, 1933, John Dillinger and Homer Van Meter moved into a two-story white frame cottage here at 2509 N. Pulaski. The home, located next door to a filling station, was owned by James J. Probabsco, a friend of the Dillinger gang. Also in the house was Probabsco's girlfriend, Peggy Doyle. Dillinger and Van Meter occupied a small front bedroom, sleeping together on a folding couch. It was here in the bedroom that Dr. Wilhelm Loeser and Dr. Harold Cassidy performed plastic facial surgery on both Dillinger and Van Meter. Dillinger's heart stopped while under the ether and it took several minutes before he could be revived. While Dillinger and Van Meter recuperated here, gangster "Baby Face" Nelson came to visit them several times. Dillinger even ventured out to visit the World's Fair twice and to take in several Cub games. They moved out on July 4. 2509 Pulaski.
UPDATE – Dillinger was killed on July 22, 1934 at the Biograph Theater. Van Meter was killed by police in Minnesota on August 23, 1934. "Baby Face" Nelson was killed by police in Barrington, Illinois on November 27, 1934. James Probabsco leaped to his death from the 19th floor window of the Federal Building on July 25, and Peggy Doyle committed suicide by jumping from a third floor window of her apartment on August 17. The home was torn down years ago and the site became a parking lot.

UNTOUCHABLES RAID CAPONE BREWERY – Elliot Ness and his "Untouchables" raided one of Al Capone's illegal breweries located in a garage here in 1929. Eight huge vats filled with beer were destroyed and six men were arrested. 1712 N. Kilbourn.

BIRTHPLACE OF WALT DISNEY – Walt Disney was born here on December 5, 1901, in the upstairs bedroom of a home that was built in 1890 by his father Elias. Elias later bought the lot next door where he built another house which he sold. The Disney's attended the St. Paul Congregational Church while here. 2156 N. Tripp.


BOHEMIAN NATIONAL CEMETERY – Anton Cermak, former Chicago mayor is buried here in the Bohemian National Cemetery at 5255 Pulaski on the NE corner of Foster. He was shot and killed during an assassination attempt on President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

MEMORIAL PARK CEMETERY – Buried here in the Memorial Park Cemetery at 900 Gross Point Rd. in Skokie are:
Will Harridge. Baseball Hall of famer and former president of the American League.
James Kraft. Founder of the Kraft Cheese Company.
Karen Kupcinet. Daughter of columnist Irv Kupcinet. She was murdered in Hollywood in1963.
Sid Luckman. Former Chicago Bear quarterback.
Robert Reed. Actor and star of the TV show The Brady Bunch.

SCHURZ HIGH SCHOOL – William S. Paley, former head of CBS went to school here in 1918. NE corner of Milwaukee and Addison.


THE "CLOWN" KILLS 33 YOUNG BOYS – John Wayne Gacy was a building contractor who sometimes worked as a clown at children's parties in the Northridge area. When young boys living on the northwest side began disappearing in the 1970s, police suspected that Gacy might be involved. When they searched his home here at 8213 Summerdale, they discovered 26 bodies stuffed in crawl spaces, and two more buried in the backyard. Four more were found floating in the Des Plaines River. Gacy, 52, a homosexual, confessed to killing 33 young boys between 1972 and 1978. All 33 murders took place here in his home. 8213 Summerdale.
UPDATE – Gacy was executed on May 19, 1994 at Stateville Prison in Joliet. His last meal was fried chicken and butterfly shrimp. His house of horrors was demolished in the 1980s.

ELMWOOD CEMETERY – Agnes Belushi, mother of actor John Belushi is buried here in the Elmwood Cemetery on the east side of Hatcher, south of Belmont in River Grove.

IRVING PARK CEMETERY – Buried here in the Irving Park Cemetery on the south side of Irving Park between Harlem and Cumberland are:
Frank Gusenberg, gangster. He was killed at the St. Valentine's Day Massacre. He is in the Bethsayers Section.
Peter Gusenberg, gangster. He was killed at the St. Valentine's Day Massacre. He is in the Bethsayers Section.
Albert Kachellek, gangster. He was killed at the St. Valentine's Day Massacre. He is in the Bethsayers Section.

MOUNT ABYRIC ABYRIV CEMETERY – Architect Dankmar Adler is buried here in the Mount Abyric Abyriv Cemetery at the northwest corner of Addison and Narraganset. When Adler died in 1900, Marshall Field had one of the columns from the demolished Central Music Hall placed on his grave. The Music Hall, which was designed by Adler and Louis Sullivan on the southeast corner of State and Randolph, was demolished in 1900 for the expansion of Marshall Fields Department Store.

ROSEMOUNT PARK CEMETERY – Boxer Barney Ross is buried here in the Rosemount Park Cemetery at 6738 W. Addison. A former lightweight and middleweight boxing champion, Ross was never knocked out. Is in Section N, Lot 19.

BABY FACE NELSON – Gangster George "Baby Face" Nelson (Lester Gillis) is buried here in the St. Joseph's Cemetery on the SW corner of Vermont & Thatcher in River Grove. He was killed by the FBI on November 27, 1934.

WESTLAWN CEMETERY – Buried here in the Westlawn Cemetery at 7801 W. Montrose are:
Jack Ruby, killer of Lee Harvey Oswald, the man who shot President Kennedy. Ruby died of cancer in prison while awaiting trial. He lies next to his parents, Joseph and Fannie Ruebenstein.
Abe Saperstein, founder of the Harlem Globetrotters.
Albert N. Wolff, FBI agent. He was one of Elliot Ness's "Untouchables."

MARS CANDY – Shortly after Mars Candies moved here in 1928, they added a chocolate coating to its six-year-old Snickers bar and sales boomed. 2019 N. Oak Park, between North Ave. and Armitage.


ALL SAINTS CEMETERY
– Buried here in All Saints Cemetery at 700 N. Des Plaines River Road in Des Plaines are:
Fred Lindstrum, baseball player.
Harry Carey, former Chicago Cub announcer.
Matthew Eappen. He was the baby who died of shaking at the hands of "Nanny" Louise Woodward on February 9, 1997. In Section 41, Block 40, Lot 13, Grave I.
George Halas Jr., son of the famous Bear football coach.
Robert Piest, murder victim of homosexual mass murderer John Wayne Gacy.

MARYHILL CEMETERY – Buried here in the Maryhill Cemetery on the SW corner of Dempster & Milwaukee in Niles are:
Marion Gacy, mother of mass murderer John Wayne Gacy.
John Wayne Gacy, mass murderer. (unconfirmed).

RIDGEWOOD CEMETERY – Musician Jim Ellison is buried here in the Ridgewood Cemetery at 9900 Milwaukee in Morton Grove. He is Lot 277, Section, Grave 2.

ST. ADELBERTS CEMETERY – Buried here in St. Adelberts Cemetery at 6800 Milwaukee in Niles are:
Fredrak Fraske. He was the last surviving vet of the Indian War.
Fabian Gaffke, baseball player with the Cleveland Indians and Boston Red Sox before WWII.
George Halas, founder and coach of the Chicago Bears.
Edward "Butch" Panczko, burglar. A member of Chicago's legendary Panczko Brothers burglary gang, (Pops, Butch and Peanuts). The press covered his funeral like he was a Hollywood celebrity. The Miami Herald called Butch "a giant in his field," and suggested that if there was ever a Hall of Fame for burglars, he should certainly be in it. During his life time he was arrested 77 times, yet he served only ten days in jail and was fined a total of $113.



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