Author by : Rudolph H. Hartmann
Languange : en
Publisher by : University of Missouri Press
Format Available : PDF, ePub, Mobi
Total Read : 71
Total Download : 286
File Size : 52,9 Mb
Description : Kansas City political boss Thomas J. Pendergast's reign came to an end in 1939, after an investigation led by Special Agent Rudolph Hartmann of the U.S. Department of the Treasury resulted in Pendergast's conviction for income tax evasion. In 1942, Hartmann's report was submitted to Secretary of the Treasury Henry Morgenthau, in whose papers it has remained for the past fifty-six years. While researching the relations between Pendergast & Franklin D. Roosevelt, Robert H. Ferrell came across Hartmann's landmark report-the only firsthand account of the investigation that brought down the greatest political machine of its time. Reading like a popular "whodunit," The Kansas City Investigation traces Pendergast's life in political power from his roots as a young bookkeeper to his demise as one of America's most infamous crime bosses. Pendergast's influence was at its height in 1936 when his power reached not merely to every precinct & ward in Kansas City but also to the statehouse in Jefferson City & Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. It was during this time that Pendergast took a massive bribe-$460000-from 137 national fire insurance companies operating within Missouri, opening him to attack by his enemies. Early in 1938, President Roosevelt received a tip from Missouri Governor Lloyd C. Stark regarding Pendergast's illegal bribe. Although the president had at one time been a supporter of Pendergast, he now considered Stark a more important political ally. Roosevelt in turn asked the Treasury Department to investigate Pendergast. The intelligence unit of the Treasury Department put Hartmann, its best operative, on the case. Within a year Hartmann & his agents had found enough evidence to set the ball rolling toward Boss Tom's demise. More than a simple account of the collapse of the Pendergast machine, The Kansas City Investigation takes the reader on a mysterious ride through the twists & turns of this intriguing investigation, all from an insider's perspective. More important, Hartmann's report provides historians & readers alike the opportunity to evaluate the machine era in American political history-an era that, according to the investigation, "proved the old axiom that 'Truth is stranger than fiction.'"