Politics Chicago Style

Much of Chicago’s culture is formed in the prosperous 20s! Doors were opened, placing the city on an international stage, in 1893 with the Columbian Exhibition. For the next two decades, technology flourishes, rapid growth increases power struggles, and the institution of prohibition leads up to the most defining decade for this most American city.

Cover art

Cover art from June 14, 1926 issue.

The Chicago Roaring 20s SIM expresses the times—the flavor, pace, culture, events, and most of all, politics. It is an arena for organized crime (like Capone and company), scientific exploration (such as the Scopes trial of evolution defended by Clarence Darrow in 1925), notorious personal crime (echoing the Leopold & Loeb shocking murder trial), and international intrigue (such as the trial of Sacco & Vanzetti in 1927).

Follow the action and the stories as three warring factions vie for power: The Outfit Mafia, The Syndicate, and the Police. The 20s does roar with tommy guns, exhaust pipes, and political hot air! ((Events, attractions, and activities all reflect an authenticity that makes historic fiction ring with truth, allowing a glimpse again into the values of an earlier time.))

Politics are equivalent to theater for the citizens of Chicago. ((Much more involved in bar, club, or dinner discussions, the conflict between powerful groups was much more of a spectator sport than today.)) The Chicago Roaring 20s SIM just had a turnover of power from its early development to the city who leaps enthusiastically into world prominence:

Mayoral Launches Race and Upholds Reputation

Mayor Assassinated!! Special Report!!

Escaped Suspect Slain on City Streets, Cop is Hero

From Respectful to Spectacle!

Mayoral Debate: Chicago Style

Mayor Chosen by a Hair

Historic Week Wrap-up

The murder-rate soars as the city grows larger and the black market flourishes with illegal alcohol. Nerves are frayed by disguising saloons behind salons, bootleggers populate hidden rooms, and the police, the press, the politicians, and the gangs form a web of busy payoffs and favors.

Vice, Victims, and Visitors

Revenge is Sweet, Language is Not

Ransom for Retribution

A Trial of Smoky Perceptions Turns into a Murky Reality

Setup or Solution?

((HISTORICAL NOTES contributed by Eleanor Medier

With the many power struggles in the 1920s, murder rates rose dramatically. The Chicago Crime Scenes Project reports: “As the various parts of Johnny Torrio‘s syndicate began falling apart in 1924, culminating in the murder of Torrio’s north side associate Dion O’Banion, likely at the hand of his south side associates, the Genna brothers, Chicago’s “Beer Wars” began, and the murder rate skyrocketed by 250% between 1923 and 1928. Also around the same time, the notoriously-violent Al Capone took over full control of Torrio’s organization in 1925.” Even in 2010, when traveling internationally, those in far away places equate Chicago with Al Capone (or Michael Jordan which is a different story).))

*((As 2010 Chicago faces a mayoral race, it is clear that the Machine begun in the 1920s, is alive and well.))


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