A MLA paper for the life of Al Capone. Includes works cited and orks consulted.

Essay by moreno_xxxlHigh School, 10th gradeA, July 2002

download word file, 4 pages 3.0

Downloaded 200 times

Al Capone, one of the best-known Italian-American gangster, was a child of a struggling Italian immigrant family from the village of Castellmarre di Stabia, sixteen miles south of Naples. Capone took "the feudal Italian criminal society and fashioning it into a modern American criminal enterprise"(Bardsley). He was the "single greatest symbol of the collapse of law and order in the United States during the 1920's"("Al Capone"). There where a few major points in his existence that impacted him considerably starting with his childhood, the beginning of his criminal empire, and his peak.

Alphonse Capone or the American given name Al Capone, was born on January 17, 1899 in Brooklyn, New York "to a quite, conventional family"(Bardsley). His parents where struggling for work because they where Italian immigrants and had no English speaking abilities. At age five, Capone went to public school seven, to which "educational prospects for Italian children were very poor.

The school was deeply prejudiced against them and did little to encourage any interest in higher education"(Bardsley). "At fourteen, he lost his temper at the teacher, she hit him and he hit her back. He was expelled and never went to school again"(Bardsley). As time progressed, Capone began to get closer to a local gangster, this man was known as Johnny Torrio:

A breed of gangster, a pioneer in the development of a modern criminal enterprise. Torrio's administrative and organizational talents transformed crude racketeering into a kind of corporate structure, allowing his businesses to expand as opportunities emerged. From Torrio, a young Capone learned invaluable lessons that were the foundation of the criminal empire he built later in Chicago. (Bardsley)

At this point of his life, nobody would ever consider that Capone would go on to be the


a criminal czar that he ultimately became.

Al Capone became one of a few of Johnny Torrio most trusted people. Torrio had trusted Capone so much he recommended him "to one of the most feared, respected, and a

notorious gangster"(Bardsley), an individual by the name of Francesco "Yale" Iole. He

worked for Yale as a bartender/bouncer. Capone's luck turned suddenly: When he waited on the table of a young couple. The girl was beautiful and the young Capone was entranced. He leaned over her and said, "Honey, you have a nice ass and I mean that as a compliment." The man with her was her brother Frank Gallucio. He jumped to his feet and punched the man who insulted his sister. Capone flew into a rage and Gallucio pulled out a knife to defend himself. He cut Capone's face three times before he grabbed his sister and ran out of the place. While the wounds healed well, the long ugly scars would haunt him forever.(Bardsley)

Capone felled in love and made the choice to quite. "Al Capone got married with a blond,

Irish girl named Mae Coughlin, who was two years older than him"(Bardsley). They had a

child in December 4, 1918 by the name of Albert Francis Capone. He soon began to focus in

a legitimate career, since he had to support his new family. Capone became a "capable

bookkeeper for Peter Aiello's construction firm" (Bardsley). In November 14, 1920, Al

Capone's father passed away of a heart disease at age fifty-five. Capone resumed his

relationship with Johnny Torrio, to which he proposed to Capone to move to Chicago with

him and naturally he accepted. Al and Johnny started to leave a mark in Chicago by selling

illegitimate bootleg liquor, since it was outlaw at the time. Johnny and Capone had chosen a

perfect place to start their criminal empire since Chicago was a rowdy, hard drinking town.

For several years:

After Capone arrived in Chicago, things were comparatively quiet among the various gangs that had carved up Chicago's rackets. Nonetheless, reform-minded William E. Dever succeeded the spectacularly corrupt Mayor "Big Bill" Thompson. With city


government nominally in the hands of an earnest reformer, the daily process of payoffs and corruption became more complicated. Torrio and Capone decided to put many operations out of the city into the suburb of Cicero, where they could purchase the entire city government and police department.(Bardsley)

After opening their innovative brothel in Cicero, Torrio withdrew the country to Italy

with his elderly mother. "Capone saw an opportunity to expand his criminal business and

took the chance, but it was no easy task"(Bergreen 30). It only took a couple of crooked cops,

criminal deals, and homicides to the level where he originally wanted to achieved to. During

the time of his peak "there were many attempts of assassinating Al Capone, to which none

was successful" (Bergreen 41). There was an attempt to murder his partner Johnny Torrio, but

luckily he survived and determined to retire to Colorado. Torrio had left everything to

Capone. Now Capone was at his peak, he seemed unstoppable until he was accused for

twenty-two accounts on tax evasion. On October 17, 1931, Capone was found guilty on some

accounts. He was "sentenced to eleven years, $500,000 in fines and court costs of another

$30,000 and without bail"(Bardsley). After staying in the US Penitentiary for a while, he was

transferred to Alcatraz. "Capone's sentence got reduce to six years five months for good

behavior" (Bardsley). After he got out of prison, Capone choose to retired from the gangster's

life and moved to the Palm Islands. "Al Capone died on January 25, 1945 next to Mea, his

loving wife"("Capone Dead"). The funny thing is that even thought people many times tried

to kill him, none where more successful than a simple disease, by the name of syphilis.

Capone has done what not many men had never done before, and that is leave a mark

in the American history, and inspiring numerous Hollywood master pieces such as the 1933

Scarface and the 1983 Scarface starring Al Pacino as well. He wasn't evilly hearted instead

joyful, assisting out people who where in need. Basically the point is that he made a lot of


contributions to his community and he was seen as a luminary by his people, but for the rest

of ignorant America he was seen as Al Capone, the ruthless gangster. 5

Works Cited

Bergreen, Laurance. Capone: The man and the era. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1994

Bardsley, Marilyn, "Al Capone", May 30,2002

Bishop, James. "Capone emperor of all but gun real ruler." Sunday mirror 14 February 1932: D-s

"Al Capone", May 30, 2002 6

Work Consulted

Ness, Eliot and Oscar, Fraley."The Untouchables". New York: Buccaneer Books 1997


May 30, 2002

Scarface. Dir. Brian De Palma. With Al Pacino, Michelle Pfeiffer. Universal Pictures. 1983