Accardo: The Genuine Godfather


TOGETHER . . . Roemer [is] America's most decorated FBI agent."
--Chicago Tribune
For forty years Tony Accardo was America's most dangerous criminal. He cut his teeth on the Chicago mob wars of Capone and Elliot Ness. He got his nickname "Joe Batters" for killing two men with a baseball bat. As the bodies piled up, Capone's youngest capo murdered and schemed his ...
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TOGETHER . . . Roemer [is] America's most decorated FBI agent."
--Chicago Tribune
For forty years Tony Accardo was America's most dangerous criminal. He cut his teeth on the Chicago mob wars of Capone and Elliot Ness. He got his nickname "Joe Batters" for killing two men with a baseball bat. As the bodies piled up, Capone's youngest capo murdered and schemed his way to the top.
William Roemer was the first FBI agent to face Tony "The Big Tuna" Accardo. Now, Roemer tells the story that only he could tell: the deals, the hits, the double-crosses, and the power plays that reached from the Windy City to Hollywood and to New York. Drawing on secret wiretaps and inside information, ACCARDO chronicles bloodshed and mayhem for more than six decades--as Roemer duels against the most powerful don of them all. . . .
"Roemer brings the reality of organized crime home to us."
--Boston Herald
"A big, sprawled out account that serves as anecdotal history of organized crime."
--Kirkus Reviews

The definitive work on the most powerful mob boss anytime, anywhere, by the most decorated agent in the history of the FBI, who played "a vital role in the bureau's involvement in organized crime investigations" William H. Webster, former FBI Director.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Nicknamed ``Joe Batters'' by Al Capone because he beat two thugs to death with a baseball bat, Tony Accardo 1906-1992 would go on to impress his mob superiors by using ``Chicago Choppers''-Thompson submachine guns-at the infamous St. Valentine's Day Massacre in 1929. After the demise of Capone, Accardo quickly moved to the forefront of the mob hierarchy, becoming a capo under Capone's successor, Frank Nitti, and concentrating on gambling operations. Roemer, who exhibits a grudging respect for Accardo, alleges without documentation that the mob under Accardo bought off U.S. Attorney General Tom Clark with an appointment to the Supreme Court. Also covered are Accardo's appearance before the Kefauver Committee in 1951, where he was cited for contempt of Congress; his Chicago mob's late move into Las Vegas; his ``retirement'' to consiglieri in 1957; how J. Edgar Hoover and the FBI were finally forced to join the battle against organized crime after the infamous Apalachin, N.Y., mob meeting in 1957; Accardo's prohibition on selling narcotics; and his ordered ``hit'' on Sam Giancana. Roemer The Enforcer, former senior agent on the organized crime squads of the Chicago FBI, has written a colorful biography rich in fact, anecdote and speculation. Photos. Major ad/promo. Nov.
Library Journal
Retired FBI agent Roemer (The Enforcer, LJ 6/15/94) profiles Chicago mobster Anthony Accardo (1906-92), a.k.a. Joe Batters, a.k.a. The Big Tuna. Starting out in the Capone gang, Accardo quickly rose to the top of the organization, wielding absolute control and inspiring fear in others. Despite damaging evidence against him, Accardo in his 70 years as a gangster never spent a day in jail. Using a wealth of inside information gathered from eavesdropping on mob meeting places, Roemer presents an excellent story of a ruthless mob leader blended in with the history of the period. Often Roemer goes overboard in congratulating agents involved, and he uses Accardo's aliases interchangeably, which can confuse readers. Nevertheless, he has written an interesting book on the history of gangsters and provides another chapter of Chicago's social history. Recommended for true-crime collections.-Michael Sawyer, Clinton P.L., Ia.
From Barnes & Noble
Neil Howlett, Frank Gorshin, and Nan Christie star in this production of the Gilbert & Sullivan operetta.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780804114646
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 9/28/1996
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 434
  • Sales rank: 282,834
  • Product dimensions: 4.23 (w) x 6.88 (h) x 1.09 (d)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 25, 2000

    Great story of both the Outfit and Chicago political workings

    I've only completed about half of this book and I can say that it is definitely a good read. It tells a tale not only of the Big Tuna, Tony Accardo, but of Chicago social/ political history and how early corrution of officials like Dennis Cooney and Hinky Dink Kenna allowed the early Colosimo/Torrio/ Capone gangs to operate, paving the way for Accardo. This book also pokes holes in the myth that New York is the be all, end all of organized crime, proving Chicago was well ahead in both crime syndicates and political corruption. The only thing that takes away from the book is that it is very general in describing the rise of the Outfit in the early days. It does not give specific details of the rival gangs of the 1920s and how the Capone gang either absorbed or destroyed all others, ie the Gennas and O'Banion/Moran crew as well as the merger of the Camorra and Mafia in Chicago to become the Outfit. Overall, a good read. Good stuff!

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