Prohibition Agent No. 1; Chicago Tribune's "Windy City"

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Sat Jun 30 13:51:51 UTC 2001

by Izzy Einstein (former Prohibition Sleuth)
with an introduction by
Stanley Walker (city editor, NY Herald Tribune)
Frderick A. Stokes Company, New York

   Izzy Einstein was a famous Probihition agent, but he didn't provide much slang in this book.  Here goes:

Pg. 13:  I nabbed a string of them with a simple device not an inch big, known as a Put-and-Take top.  Remember those things?  If you don't I know of some ex-saloonkeepers who do.
Pg. 33: us White Coats...
Pg. 33:  "Whew!" I said.  "What kind of bath-tub was this born in?"
Pg. 38:  I dropped in there disguised as a department store driver and, after purchasing, delivered a little C.O.D.--"Come On Down" to the Federal Building.
Pg. 47:  "I've had three years in prison," he told (Pg. 48--ed.) me, "and now I've started to go straight."
(PEOPLE IN PRISON ARE GAY?--ed.)  I had to point out to him that his notion of "going straight" and the government's weren't exactly the same.
Pg. 73:  ..."honest Izzy, America's premier hooch-hound"...
Pg. 106:  One night in Brooklyn, the "City of Churches and Baby Carriages"... ("City of Churches" is from at least the 1840s, but I don't know the last--ed.)
Pg. 159:  That job, with no orchestra or floor show to help me in my knock-down-and-drag-out battle with sleep, was _some_ assignment for a "gay sport" in a dress suit to hand himself.
Pg. 205:  At one place I'm thinking of, the system of getting their coin and then booting them out had been reduced to a science.  It went like this:
   1. The rush for the rum.
   2. Broke.
   3. The bum's rush.
Pg. 214:  This gyp driver, satisfied that I was a boob from Boob Corners, had taken me for an "all-expense cruise" through Detroit and surroundings.
Pg. 235:  ...Big Drought..."blind tigers"...
Pg. 237:  ..."speaks" and "tigers"...
Pg. 240:  There was a kind of bargain stuff called "block-fall" which certainly did live up to its name--you took a drink of it, walked a block, and fell.  And from the samples I collected I'd say it was guaranteed.
Pg. 249:  With this information and accompanied by some "friends," including members of the nose-powdering sex, I butter-and-egged my way through the Tango Belt (as it was called) and played the high-flying sucker...
Pg. 254:  ...plain 'hooch,' otherwise, colored spirits.
Pg. 259:  ...they sold lots of "rot-gut."


   In 1996, I gave the CHICAGO TRIBUNE my "Windy City" information for free.  It contained an 1887 explanation of "Windy City" from the CHICAGO TRIBUNE. There was no response.
   I wrote to the newspaper's Ombudsman.  I was told that the CHICAGO TRIBUNE does not accept "unsolicited manuscripts."
   In 1999, the CHICAGO TRIBUNE MAGAZINE (article by Rick Kogan) got "Windy City" wrong.  I wrote to him, a letter to the editor of the magazine, and just about everybody.  There was no correction.
   Now, anybody could check "Windy City and Dana" on Lexis-Nexis and come up with the WALL STREET JOURNAL article of earlier this year.  A child could do this.
   This gem appeared in the CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 2 June 2001, by Leslie Mann:

   New York Sun editor Charles A. Dana coined the term "Windy City" while describing the competition between New York City, Chicago, Washington, D.C. and St. Louis for the right to host the fair.

(Back only six days and treated like crap by both the Chicago Tribune and the New York Times!  Off to Iceland!--ed.)

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