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Dillinger, Anniversary Edition


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Table of Contents

Foreword by Rick Mattix
Preface to the 75th Anniversary Edition
About the Book
1. The Twig Is Bent
2. The Quality of Mercy
3. "And every man's hand"
4. The Gang Attains Maturity
5. A Florida Vacation
6. Prosecutor Estill Poses for a Picture
7. Piquett Takes the Case
8. The Vanishing American
9. Wooden Gun, Indiana
10. How Dillinger Did It
11. Enter Uncle Sam
12. Storm in the Midwest
13. Homecoming
14. Slaughter of Innocents
15. The Safest Place in America
16. Loeser Whets His Knife
17. Dillinger Goes to the Park
18. The Private Life of a Public Enemy
19. The Last Raid of the Dillinger Gang
20. Piquett Falls from Grace
21. The Woman in Red
23. The Battle of Barrington
24. Piquett Pays the Price
25. Casualties
A Dillinger Chronology
Chicago Hideouts and Hangouts
Gravesites of Gang Members
After the Facts: Further Investigations by William J. Helmer
A Dillinger Miscellany Prepared by Rick Mattix and William J. Helmer

Promotional Information

The story of one of America's most notorious criminals

About the Author

G. Russell Girardin had a successful career as the head of an advertising agency. He died mere months after showing William J. Helmer the long-forgotten manuscript on Dillinger.William J. Helmer is author of The Gun That Made the Twenties Roar and other books on the gangland era. He lives in Boerne, Texas.Rick Mattix is author (with William J. Helmer) of Public Enemies: America's Criminal Past, 1919-1940. He lives in Bussey, Iowa.


This is one of the most unusual books in the annals of modern true-crime writing, for the bulk of the text was written 60 years ago and never before published. In 1933, Girardin, a Chicago ad man, persuaded Louis Piquett, who had served as John Dillinger's lawyer, to collaborate on a series of newspaper articles, which were syndicated in the Hearst newspapers, and on a book-length biography of Dillinger, who was gunned down by the police in Chicago in 1934 at the age of 31. In 1989, Playboy contributing editor Helmer met Girardin and together they reworked the unpublished biography, until Girardin died in 1990. Helmer has been faithful to the florid style of the original, which retains much of the spirit of the Depression era, when many regarded bankers as evil and bank robbers were celebrated in the media. Piquette and Girardin contend that a number of Dillinger's robberies were prearranged with the banks. Helmer's copious and informative notes reflect his further research, based on sources not available to Girardin. The book constitutes a significant addition to Americana. Photos not seen by PW . (May)

"A fascinating addition to the true-crime shelf." NPlayboy "One of the most entertaining, thought-provoking, and enlightening works on one of history's most infamous figures." NAustin American Statesman "Eminently revealing and enjoyable." NKirkus Reviews "Retains much of the spirit of the Depression era, when many regarded bankers as evil and bank robbers were celebrated in the media... A significant addition to Americana." NPublishers Weekly "This book is a real steal and deserves to become legendary in its own right... It reads like the best of fictionNonly it's great history." NMinnesota History

This volume on the infamous bank robber was written in the 1930s but not published until 1994. An expanded edition, this includes additional info on the charismatic criminal. Dillinger was an enigma: the Tommy gun-toting thug was seen as a sort of Robin Hood by Depression-era Americans who didn't mind his relieving banks of their money. In the end, Dillinger is just another cheap crook, although a mystique still surrounds him. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

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