Encyclopedia ofChicago

Historical Sources : Bound Volume
Historical Source
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"Tavern Owner Slain in Beer Syndicate War," 1932

 

 

 

"Tavern Owner Slain in Beer Syndicate War," 1932

Alongside the many industrial establishments and the small residential district, a string of taverns was established along Division Street on Goose Island. These taverns became centers of island life by the turn of the last century. They served as lunch rooms for many of the island workers and evening destinations for residents. Prohibition did not end liquor sales on Goose Island. While one source counted eleven taverns with padlocks on their front doors, others remained open as private clubs. Illegal liquor sales took the life of at least one resident on Goose Island. On August 10, 1932, Joseph F. (Big Rabbit) Connell, stepped outside his restaurant at 1140 Hickory Street at 11 p.m. He was gunned down in a flurry of gunfire from a passing car. Police claimed that he had sold beer in defiance of the syndicate and lost his life because of his attempted independence.