The Berghoff Resolution

The City of Chicago and Alderman Brendan Reilly of the 42nd Ward shared the resolution below that details how The Berghoff received both the first and second Chicago retail liquor licenses after the repeal of Prohibition in 1933. The original license is still on display at the Berghoff Cafe located at 17 W. Adams, Chicago, IL. See the earlier blog post below dated July 30, 2013 for a photo of this license.

Happy 75th Birthday Pizzeria Uno!

Happy 75th birthday to Pizzeria Uno! Chicago Crime Tours was honored to share in the celebration of 75 years of Chicago’s original Deep-Dish Pizza! Enjoy some photos from the festivities! Come try some pie on Chicago Crime Tour’s Crime & Pizza Walk. Tours run Memorial Day weekend - October. Also, check out the speakeasy upstairs at Pizzeria Due, which is just 1 block down the street from Pizzeria Uno. Make sure that you know the secret phrase for entry.

Last remaining witness to the murder of Bobby Franks.

These glasses are the last remaining witness to America's first thrill kill.  Two brilliant and wealthy young men, Nathan Leopold and Richard Loeb, murdered 14 year old Bobby Franks in May of 1924  just to see if they could get away with the gruesome act.  As smart as Nathan Leopold may have been, he wasn't smart enough to realize that he dropped his unique glasses at Wolf Lake, the site of where the two murderers attempted to hide the body of young Bobby Franks.  Investigative authorities were able to quickly trace the glasses back to Nathan Leopold and Richard Loeb, resulting in an admission.  Although they were guilty, they were sparred the death penalty after a brilliant closing statement by Clarence Darrow, one of Chicago's most famous attorneys.

Tommy Gun's Garage--Chicago's Original Speakeasy Holiday Show

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Tommy Gun’s Garage Holiday Show

Chicago’s longest running audience-interactive dinner show!

Let our Gangsters and Flappers entertain you’se with some of da classics . . . We Wise Guys,

Rudolph da Red Nosed Reindeer,

Da Night Before Christmas . . . and MORE!

Tommy Gun’s Garage where “gangsters”, “flappers” and you, yes, you!, interact in a night of great food and a musical comedy revue you’ll always remember – 1920’s style!

Includes Soup or Salad, choice of Prime Rib, Chicken, Lasagna or Salmon, Dessert, Coffee, Tea or Soft Drink, a one-of-a-kind show, tax and gratuity. “Hooch” is extra.


                                            1 – 9 People      10 – 19 People      Over 20 People


Thursday – 6pm      $60.00      $55.00      $53.00     

Friday – 7pm      $65.00      $60.00      $58.00     

Saturday – 6pm      $70.00      $65.00      $63.00     

Sunday – 5:30pm      $60.00      $55.00      $52.00     


Reservation and Credit Card Gurantee Required

Balance Due on Arrival  

3 Hours of Non-Stop Comedy & Fun




Chris Adams

2114 S. Wabash Ave.

Chicago, IL 60616

TOLL FREE: 800-461-0178

PHONE: 312-225-0273

Chicago Gangster Al Capone's House for Sale

Al Capone's single family Chicago house was recently listed for sale for $225,000.  Although he never held title to the property, due to the fact that he never placed real estate assets in his personal name, this was his primary Chicago residence in which he and his wife raised son Francis "Sonny" Capone.

Reviewing Law & Order in Chicago - Household Names

Chicago, like most metropolitan areas, has a storied history of criminal enterprise, including organized crime and serial killings.  Throughout history, criminals have called Chicago home - some by birth, others by deeds committed while residing nearby.  The scope of crimes associated with Chicago runs the gamut from kidnappings to robberies, with noted offenders making names for themselves in each criminal category.  While it isn't necessarily the claim to fame cities aspire to, Chicago boasts a number of criminals elevated to household-name status, including these notorious Illinois connections.

John Dillinger - The adulation surrounding Dillinger in his day rivaled that of stars and starlets, despite his notorious status as a criminal.  The Great Depression was in full swing as Dillinger plied his trade, so public perception was altered by desperation and futility. To many people living during these hard times, Dillinger and other criminals represented hope, of sorts, drawing admirers for their ability to take matters into their own hands, despite economic oppression.

Dillinger was born in Indianapolis in 1903.  Despite being born to a middle-class family with access to education and employment, Dillinger's troubles began in his teens. Responding to his failure to socialize properly living in the city, Dillinger's father moved the family to a rural setting, on a farm.  Despite the change, Dillinger continued down the wrong path, eventually being convicted for robbing a grocery store and handed a particularly harsh sentence for the act.  After more than 8 years in prison, Dillinger stepped into the spotlight almost immediately following his release. His subsequent crime spree traversed the Midwest, including stops in Chicago to rob banks.  In a much heralded move, agents from Bureau of Investigation killed Dillinger as he left Chicago's Biograph Theater, in 1934.

John Wayne Gacy - Chicago's North Side was where John Gacy's family lived at the time of his birth.  The reputed killer had a normal upbringing, by all accounts, and enjoyed scouting activities shared with other's his age.  While he was not especially charismatic of popular, his social standing among peers was not entirely dysfunctional.  His criminal life became public in 1968, when Gacy confessed to sodomizing a young man against his will.  Though convicted and sentenced to 10 years for the Iowa crime, Gacy was released in 1970, before returning to his native Chicago.

Early-on, after returning to Chicago, Gacy was accused of forcing a young man to perform sex acts, but the charges were dropped when the accuser failed to follow through with charges. Gacy carried-on a grand façade for several years, despite brushes with the law and rumors about his homosexual tendencies.  After several young male employees of his contracting firm went missing, and a survivor identified Gacy's vehicle, police began looking closely at his history.  In one of the most grisly and highly publicized murder cases in history, John Wayne Gacy was linked to more than thirty killings and the subsequent burial of bodies under his home.

Ted Kaczynski - Raised in Chicago, the infamous "Unabomber" began his campaign of terror in 1978 by mailing an explosive device to a Chicago university.  For 17 subsequent years, Kaczynski would continue to target victims with explosive devices, eventually killing three people and wounding dozens more.  It wasn't until 1995 that investigators turned the corner on the case, after receiving a 35,000 word manifesto from someone claiming to be responsible for the crimes.  Kaczynski's brother recognized parallels between his brother's views and those expressed in the diatribe against society.  The Unabomber was taken into custody in 1996, and was sentenced for his crimes in 1998.

Al Capone - Of all Chicago criminals, Al Capone is perhaps the most notorious.  The reputed gangster ran an enterprise in Chicago that included various illicit activities and escalated to killing competitors and others unwilling to get in step with his illegal endeavors.  Born in Brooklyn, Capone arrived in Chicago in 1919, quickly carving out his place in local lore.  Throughout the twenties, Capone had his hand in gambling, prostitution, distilling and brewing operations, as well as holding interests in legitimate businesses.  The culture and climate were just right for gaining illicit profits, which Capone did efficiently.  Perhaps the most audacious crime attributed to Capone's gang was the St Valentine's Day Massacre of 1929.  On that day, Rival gang members were savagely riddled with bullets in the hideout of Bugs Moran, killing six members of Moran's crew and an innocent associate.

Eventually convicted and jailed for income tax evasion, Capone spent time at Alcatraz, before being released in 1939.  He died a free man in 1947 after suffering a stroke.

These are only a few of the high-profile criminals linked to the city of Chicago, which gained a reputation for lawlessness during the depression.  While times have changed, these cases provide interesting glimpses into the city's history of law and order.

Author Byline:

This guest post is contributed by Rebecca Gray, who writes about free background check for She welcomes your comments at her email id:

Tommy Gun's Garage Special St. Valentine's Day Event

Chicago Crime Tours recommends Tommy Gun's Garage Special St. Valentine's Day Massacre performance.  As they do every year, Tommy Gun's Garage will be re-enacting the St. Valentine's Day Massacre in honor of Valentine's Day.  Please see www.tommygunsgarage for further information, including, schedule, menu items and to purchase tickets. This is a authentic Chicago experience that will make Valentine's Day a day to remember.  Special performance dates include February 14-16.

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John Dillinger's Blood Near Biograph Theatre

Here is a recently released photograph of bystanders surrounding the blood of John Dillinger near an alley by the Biograph Theater on July 22, 1934.  The Chicago Tribune recently found this photograph in its basement archives.  John Dillinger was gunned down by the G Men after viewing Clark Gable in "Manhattan Melodrama" at the Biograph Theater.  John Dillinger remains Chicago's most famous bank robber.  Following his death, spectators lined up to view his body for 10 days at the Cook County Morgue.


Joseph Banks Pens Letter Detailing Death Defying Escape from MCC

Joseph "Joseph" Banks, who is a tailor by trade, recently penned a letter to the Chicago Sun Times detailing his escape from the Metropolitan Correctional Center in downtown Chicago.  He was being held in the federal prison pending bank robbery charges.

Joseph Banks' Letter to the Chicago Sun-Times.


Four Deuces at 2222 S. Wabash, Chicago

This grassy lot is the site of the former Four Deuces at 2222 S. Wabash, Chicago, IL.  Al Capone was recruited around 1920 from Brooklyn to work for South Side gangster Johnny Torrio at this "establishment" of ill-repute, which included drinking, gambling and prostitution.  Also included in this photo montage are bricks discovered immediately behind the lot, which are likely from Four Deuces.  If these bricks could talk, they could have their own blog.

Grass lot of former Four Deuces.  

Grass lot of former Four Deuces.  

Former Four Deuces building no longer exists. 

Former Four Deuces building no longer exists. 

Bricks dug up August 2013 behind the Four Deuces at 2222 S. Wabash, Chicago, IL

Bricks dug up August 2013 behind the Four Deuces at 2222 S. Wabash, Chicago, IL

The Kerryman-Former McGovern Saloon where Dean O'Banion Worked as a Waiter

The Kerryman, currently a beautiful bar and restaurant at 661 N. Clark Street in Chicago, was once called McGovern Saloon.  Former Chicago Gangster Dean O'Banion, one of the former leaders of the North Side gang during prohibition, once worked there as a waiter and singer.  After waiting on and singing to customers, he would allegedly rob drunk customers after the left the bar.

Johnny Depp frequented the Kerryman while playing the role of notorious bank robber John Dillinger in the film "Public Enemy." 

Johnny Depp frequented the Kerryman while playing the role of notorious bank robber John Dillinger in the film "Public Enemy." 

The Raleigh Hotel--Former Flophouse for Richard Speck

This office building at 648 N. Dearborn, in the heart of Chicago's River North neighborhood, used to be the Raleigh Hotel, which served as a one-night flophouse for notorious mass murderer Richard Speck.  Speck tortured and murdered 8  nursing students from South Chicago Community Hospital on July 14, 1966.  Here is a 1986 Chicago Tribune article retelling the role of the Raleigh Hotel in this horrific event.

"The Raleigh" lettering remains over the front entrance doors.  The canopy cover the old hotel's name unless you get close enough to the entrance. 

"The Raleigh" lettering remains over the front entrance doors.  The canopy cover the old hotel's name unless you get close enough to the entrance. 

First Liquor License Issued in Chicago following Repeal of Prohibition

The Volstead Act was intended to carry out the intent of the 18th Amendment, which prohibited the production, sale and transport of "intoxicating liquors."  The 18th Amendment was repealed by the 21st Amendment on December 5, 1933.   Following the repeal of prohibition, The Berghoff was the first bar in Chicago to receive its liquor license.  Here is a photo the original that is still on its wall.