John Dilinger

John Dillinger was the first Public Enemy Number 1. He escaped from jails, and he raided police station arsenals for machineguns to commit bank robberies.

Courtesy Justice Department Mug Shot

Baby Face Nelson was the second Public Enemy Number 1. He relished fighting it out with lawmen and killed more FBI agents than any other outlaw.

Courtesy Justice Department Mug Shot

PrettyBoy Floy

Pretty Boy Floyd was chased down and shot in the back by Hoover’s FBI agents as if he were a Public Enemy Number 1 culprit even though he was never charged with a federal crime.

Courtesy Mug Shot

Alvin Karpis

Alvin Karpis was the third and final Public Enemy Number 1. He was a machinegunning bank robber and kidnapper who outwitted the FBI’s multi-year search, but its agents finally learned his location from a determined Postal Inspectors’ investigation to capture him.

Courtesy Mug Shot

Doc Barker

Doc Barker was a Karpis partner who killed lawmen in multiple police escapes. He led a dramatic prisoner escape attempt from Alcatraz Island.

Courtesy Mug Shot (Alcatraz)

Charles Gargotta

Charles Gargotta was a Mafioso killer and Kansas City political machine lieutenant to Charles Binaggio. He got away with murder because of illegal connivance by Jackson County Prosecutor W. W. Graves.

Courtesy Kansas Ciy Public Library Mug Shot

Tom Pendergast

Tom Pendergast headed Kansas City’s powerful political machine for many years, and his lieutenants were a succession of Mafia leaders, most notably Binaggio.

Courtesy Kansas City Public Library

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt was given election support by the Kansas City political machine, but once in office he led a powerful federal effort to prosecute its corrupt leadership.

Courtesy Library of Congress,

US attorney MAurice Mulligan

U.S. Attorney Maurice Mulligan successfully prosecuted the leaders of the Kansas City political machine with the encouragement of President Roosevelt and despite the rabid objections of Vice President and later President Truman.

Courtesy Kansas City Public Library

Harry Truman

Harry Truman was the only president to ever sell out to organized crime because he was elected throughout his career by the Kansas City political machine whose lieutenant was the city’s Mafia chieftain.

Courtesy Library of Congress,

FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover

FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover and his assistant Clyde Tolson studying their menus before ordering dinner. They allowed photos before their standard six rounds of drinks were placed on the table preceding the food. In almost all the other photos on the net of the couple at work and socializing together, they are shown in side-by-side contact.

Courtesy FBI PR Photo-op

FBI Special Agent-in-Charge Melvin Purvin

FBI Special Agent-in-Charge Melvin Purvis who was involved in the Public Enemy Number 1 manhunts against Dillinger, Pretty Boy Floyd, and Baby Face Nelson until Director Hoover forced his publicity-seeking underling out of the Bureau.


Bill Friedman author

© Bill Friedman, 2015