close-up of gun, brick and whiskey bottle

One of Al Capone’s rivals, Bugs Moran and his North Side Gang, found out how ruthless Scarface Al could be. On the morning of St. Valentine’s Day, 1929, a black car like those used by the police pulled up to Moran’s garage on North Clark Street in Chicago. Five men, three in “borrowed” police uniforms, entered the garage. A few minutes later, the five men re-emerged, with the “police” leading the other two men away in the car.

A howling dog prompted a neighbor to look in the garage, who then quickly ran out screaming, “They’re all dead!” Seven members of the Moran gang were lying next to the wall in pools of blood from machine gun and shotgun wounds. The only one alive was asked by police to tell them who had shot him. “Nobody shot me,” he whispered before succumbing to the fourteen bullet wounds he received – faithful to the end to the gang’s code of silence.

Bugs Moran was barely spared a similar fate, arriving right after the bogus police got out of their car for what the gangster assumed was a raid. Afterwards a shaken Moran proclaimed, “Only Capone kills like that.”


Capone himself was at a Florida hotel room when the massacre occurred, but everyone knew his hand was behind the gangland slaying. Chicago and the rest of the country were appalled by the bloodshed and newly elected President Herbert Hoover vowed to bring Capone to justice as he instructed all the federal agencies to concentrate on Scarface Al. Eventually the Treasury Department got Capone as Treasury agent Elliot Ness harassed Capone’s organization, and the IRS indicted him on income tax evasion.

Brick from the wall that the men were told to line up against before they were shot dead.
Mario Gomes, My Al Capone Museum, www.alcaponemuseum.com.
Bottle of Golden Wedding Pure Rye Whiskey – Al Capone’s brand?
Detroit Historical Museum.

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