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Mob Museum gets phone booth from Al Capone HQ in Chicago

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Posted at 2:08 PM, Apr 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-29 17:27:51-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — The Mob Museum has acquired a phone booth from the former headquarters of Al Capone's crime syndicate.

The phone booth is from the Four Deuces, a club located in the Levee vice district south of downtown Chicago.

Named after its address, 2222 S. Wabash Avenue, the Four Deuces served as the headquarters of the Chicago Outfit, the crime syndicate run by Johnny Torrio and eventually by his protégé, Al Capone, in the early 1920s.

Torrio assigned Capone as manager and enforcer at the Four Deuces.

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Phone Booth from the Four Deuces, Chicago now on view at the Mob Museum in Las Vegas. Photo Courtesy: The Mob Museum

The building had four floors – the saloon and their offices on the first, gambling and prostitution on the upper floors.

Al Capone put in a furniture shop next door to the Four Deuces as a front. His business card read: “A. Capone, Antique Dealer.”

The merchandise was strictly secondhand junk, and if someone actually called about buying furniture, Capone would reply: “We ain’t open today.”

In 1923, Torrio and Capone moved their main offices to the Hawthorne Inn in Cicero, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. But Capone, using the alias “Al Brown,” still operated the Four Deuces, often parking his Cadillac across the street.

“This artifact’s ties to one of organized crime’s most infamous syndicates makes it an important addition to the Museum’s collection,” said Geoff Schumacher, senior director of content, The Mob Museum.

“Through this exhibit, we provide a glimpse into the criminal enterprises that plagued the cities where Mob figures warred with one another to secure their share of the Prohibition era’s illegal liquor trade.”

By 1931, the Four Deuces had been the site of 12 unsolved gangland murders. Capone and his henchmen used the building’s basement to torture and kill their victims, then dispose of the bodies through a rear trap door.

The phone booth was removed from the Four Deuces before the building was demolished in 1966.

It resided in the home of Chicago television personality Bruce Newton for more than 30 years.

The Mob Museum acquired the phone booth in 2019. You can check it out by visiting The Underground, a Prohibition exhibition space.

Admission to the speakeasy is included with general Museum admission and free any time for patrons using the daily password found on Instagram stories @MobMuseum_Underground.

For more information, visit TheMobMuseum.org.