Al (Scarface) Capone
Alphonse Gabriel Capone, also known as Scarface was the leader of the Southside Italian Mob, and the head of one of the largest crime organizations in Chicago during the Prohibition era. Al Capone’s lifestyle came with a lot of perks like money, power, and respect, but he also lived a very paranoid life, always watching over his shoulder and worrying about rival gangs. In this essay I shall discuss the life story of Al Capone consisting of bootlegging and gang wars, and why he is remembered as the most notorious gangster in American history.
Al Capone was born on January 17, 1899 in Brooklyn New York. He came from a very poor family. He was the son two poor Italian immigrants, Gabriel and Teresina Capone, and the fourth child of 9 siblings. As a Child, Capone lived in an old run-down tenement apartment house with no central heating, hot water or private bathrooms. Their only heat was pot-bellied coal stoves in each apartment. Gabriel worked in a grocery store and Teresina worked as a seamstress. “This mass migration of the poorest of Italians which proved somewhat unwelcome in the U.S and they could only get the poorest of jobs, if any at all” (The Family 1998).
Since the begging Capone never responded well to authority and he was known to be a tough scrappy kid. In the 6th Grade he beat up a female teacher and then dropped out after the principle physically punished him for the incident. Young Capone noticed he received unfair treatment because of his Italian background, So he never returned to school and instead he turned to crime as a way out “Capone began to engage in criminal activities as a way of achieving success in what he saw as an unjust society” ( Rick Hornung 2002). During Capone’s teen years he was a member of two teenage gangs. The Brooklyn rippers and The Forty thieves juniors. These gangs were groups of teenage hoodlums who would commit simple vandalism, fight other gangs and steal from stores.