Saturday, March 10, 2007

Bugs Moran

Rose Keefe has done it again! I got this book (even though I had been waiting for the paperback version)because I enjoyed her work on Dion O'Banion. While the meat of this book covers much of the same territory as Guns and Roses there's more her on Bugs Moran than I've found anywhere else.

Most histories that I've read discount Moran as mainly a wannabe. Let's face it he was the last in line of the Northsider's to go head to head with Capone and pretty much gets dismissed after the Valentine's Day Massacre. Keefe's book is an eye opener. "Bugs" Moran's real identity is Adelard Cunin. He was born in St. Paul, MN to French Canadian parents. He wasn't even Irish! George Moran was one of the identities he adopted while evading Prison. There's copious detail in the book about O'Banion and the yegg gang that started the Northsiders out. Right thieves the lot of them! What's great about the book is that Keefe gives the full picture of Moran's career and she gives a decent enough portrayal of him as a man. After reading this book, I believe that it is short sighted to dismiss Moran. His criminal career was extensive and largely successful. (I'm not saying that crime pays: read the book to see why) But as criminal lives go he was a success for a longer period of time than many of his 20's counterparts. If you see a Rose Keefe book buy it! She is a great writer. She's got one coming out soon about Jack Zelig one of the 1900's gang bangers. Can't wait.

On a personal note the FBI has sent me notice that they are searching their files to determine what information remains of the August Luer kidnapping. Cool!


maddog said...

I've never got around to checking into it but have heard that the National Archives have the original uncensored FBI files. Might be worth checking into, as much stuff as the FBI blacks out.

Looking forward to Rose's Zelig bio. It will have some eye-openers too. Rose did the foreword for our book. As far as I'm concerned she's the absolute best in the biz today.

Pat Downey's Gangster City is good too. So is Dan Waugh's upcoming book Egan's Rats.

bestyegg said...

I haven't had a lot of success with the Archives only because the holdings are so much more vast and I haven't gotten an understanding of how to get what yet. I'm not sure I believe the information is not blacked out...I can't believe they'd let something so basic slip through. But it's also possible that there was a time limit for when people could access the files which means that the prohibition and depression era crime stuff is more than likely available today.