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March 16 , 2011

Ten Stories from the Roaring Twenties


This book encompasses a unique decade in the history of the United States, one that figuratively exploded in terms of business expansion and worth, social experimentation, individual ingenuity and general prosperity – the vast majority of those achievements coming in the first half of the period. Who possibly would have thought all those cutting edge gains would come to an abrupt halt as the 1930’s loomed, eventually propelling the nation into a calamitous depression. Within these pages are the exploits of several important and controversial characters whose escapades helped shape not only their times but those for many years to follow. Very recognizable names – even in current times – such as Hearst, Darrow, Hoover, Capone and the obscure {but powerful} Wayne Wheeler were major protagonists of the decade’s events – both publicly and covertly – as chronicled in this volume. Others like Sacco and Vanzetti, Leopold and Loeb, were non-descript men whose murder trials initially revolted, then captivated the nation’s attention as the tales of their testimony spread throughout the daily front pages of every major newspaper in the country. Even Organized Baseball, America’s favorite pastime, was rocked by news of a scandal as arguably the sport’s best team would become branded as the “Black Sox” for baseball perpetuity. Hollywood would not escape their share of notoriety either – as one of their best known and revered comedians was unwarrantably thrust into the national spotlight, an entertainment mogul was dogged by allegations of a hushed up murder with still another of Tinseltown’s most controversial celebrities a victim of personal frailty. A small hamlet in Tennessee was the site of another national story, this one pitting the Bible against modern science. All these events began life with a national ban on the sale and distribution of alcohol {Prohibition} and ended with the devastation of the nation’s economic barometer {Wall Street}. While the passage of time has perhaps dulled the memory and effect the men and women detailed herein contributed to the culture of the United States, either in positive or negative ways, the retelling of their stories help us determine where we come from and hopefully, who we are.
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