Smaldone: The Untold Story of an American Crime Family

( 5 )

Overview

Started by Italian brothers from North Denver, the high-profile Smaldone crime syndicate began in the bootlegging days of the 1920s and flourished well into the late twentieth century. Connected to such notorious crime figures as Al Capone and Carlos Marcello, as well as to presidents and other politicians, charismatic Clyde Smaldone was the crime family's leader from the Prohibition era to the rise of gambling to the family's waning days. Uncovering the good and the bad, best-selling author Dick Kreck captures ...

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Smaldone: The Untold Story of an American Crime Family

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Overview

Started by Italian brothers from North Denver, the high-profile Smaldone crime syndicate began in the bootlegging days of the 1920s and flourished well into the late twentieth century. Connected to such notorious crime figures as Al Capone and Carlos Marcello, as well as to presidents and other politicians, charismatic Clyde Smaldone was the crime family's leader from the Prohibition era to the rise of gambling to the family's waning days. Uncovering the good and the bad, best-selling author Dick Kreck captures the complexity of Clyde, brother Checkers, and their crew, who perpetuated a shadowy underworld but exhibited great generosity and commitment to their community, offering food, money, and college funds to struggling families. Through candid interviews and firsthand accounts, Kreck reveals the true sense of what it meant to be a Smaldone, and the mix of love and dysfunction that is part of every American family.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781555917180
  • Publisher: Fulcrum Publishing
  • Publication date: 9/1/2009
  • Pages: 296
  • Sales rank: 485,920
  • Product dimensions: 5.82 (w) x 8.74 (h) x 0.98 (d)

Meet the Author


Dick Kreck retired from The Denver Post after thirty-eight years as an editor and columnist. He previously worked at the San Francisco Examiner and the Los Angeles Times. He is the author of four other books, and lives in Denver, Colorado.
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Table of Contents

Foreword xi

Acknowledgments xvii

Chapter 1 Little Caesar 1

Chapter 2 Arrivals 15

Chapter 3 Bootleg 29

Chapter 4 Noble Experiment 39

Chapter 5 Murder, Inc. 55

Chapter 6 Clyde 71

Chapter 7 Checkers 97

Chapter 8 Pueblo 113

Chapter 9 Central City 127

Chapter 10 Rich and Famous 139

Chapter 11 The Heights 153

Chapter 12 1953 167

Chapter 13 Double-crossed 183

Chapter 14 Chauncey, Paulie, and Eugene 197

Chapter 15 The Smaldone Women 211

Chapter 16 Recessional 229

Epilogue 241

Notes 256

Bibliography 264

Index 269

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 3, 2010

    Crime: A Life Story

    Dick Kreck, author of Smaldone: The Untold Story of an American Crime Family, gives the world a new look at the mobsters of North Denver, the Smaldones. Growing up as an immigrant in Colorado gave Clyde Smaldone and his family many troubles and many experiences. The head of the family was Clyde Smaldone and he worked closely with his brother Eugene (Checkers) Smaldone. Clyde's bootlegging business was the start to his life of crime and led to a gambling business and then a loan business. Clyde was known widely for his sense of humor, crime sentences, and charity. He'd spend thousands of dollars on water filtration for poor towns, give food and clothes to families who couldn't afford it, help children out, and loan money out to anyone who'd ask for it. Rather than dealing out drugs to anyone who asks, he hated drugs and anything to do with them, as well Checkers, who kicked his son out of the house because of drug use. The Smaldones had a great reputation to anyone who knew them, rather than the media who would twist stories around every time Clyde or Checkers went to prison for bootlegging, bribes, crime conspiracy, gambling, and fights. Both brothers spent around half of their life in prison for many charges and was known very well all through Denver and Pueblo. The Smaldones gave mobsters a good name and were a very kind family unlike the mobsters seen in television today. Clyde used his money wisely and gave generously to the poor and society, he is a role model everyone should follow. His themes of generosity and Robin Hood like style: stealing from the rich and giving to the poor, gave him his great reputation and satisfaction of being a good Catholic man. The only thing wrong with his good aura is his bad mobster name of murder and crime, although he was rich and successful in his businesses, they were all businesses of crime which is not what someone should do with their life. If someone is curious about the lives of mobsters, they should read this book first to realize that the start of mobbing began with getting money illegally and using it to help those less fortunate instead of the mobster reputation today of drugs, murder, and hit men. Dick Kreck brought the Smaldone family to life in his biography Smaldone: The Untold Story of an American Crime Family. Other works by Dick Kreck are Antone Wood: Boy Murderer, and Denver in Flames: Forging a New Mile High City. If his Smaldone book caught your attention and you enjoy learning about Denver history, than he is the author for you. He researches thoroughly and makes sure to keep the reader engaged by telling the life story of his main character and then throwing in stories of people who were very close of even hardly close to the main character to throw in a few fun facts. Smaldone: The Untold Story of an American Crime Family, is a wonderful, engaging, and knowledgeable book; Kreck couldn't capture the family any better.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 15, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    True

    A very real story of North Denver crime.

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  • Posted January 24, 2010

    Smalldone, The untold story of an American Crime Family

    It was a very interesting story, if you are a Denver history buff. Some interesting information about what went on in Denver during the 20's through the 80's. But these were criminals and the author glossed over the fact that this familly was violent. To hold the sway they had to be, you know they had to have killed people, and they were inplicated in murders. The author painted them, too much as good family members and neighbors. THEY WERE CRIMINALS!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 21, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 8, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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