By: Kurt Bringsjord

The eighteenth amendment said that alcohol was illegal in every way. To enforce the eighteenth amendment congress passed the Volstead Act. The Volstead Act enforced prohibition by having a special force called the Prohibition Bureau. The Prohibition Bureau was low on men and also untrained. They often risked their lives against bootleggers, gangsters, and other alcohol related people. The agents were also seriously underpaid. As a result the temptation to become corrupt was too much for many of them. Many people called the Prohibition Bureau G-men. A very special G-man was Elliot Ness.

was born in Chicago in 1903. He graduated from the University of Chicago in 1925. He joined the Justice Department as a special agent in 1928. Ness led a group of law enforcement officers against Chicago gangster Al Capone and his bootlegging activities. Ness's group earned the nickname "the Untouchables" because, unlike many other public officials of the time, they could not be bribed or frightened by mobsters. Then, from 1935 to 1942, Ness acted as director of public safety in Cleveland, where he cleaned up corruption in the city's police force. In 1947, he ran for mayor of Cleveland but was defeated. Unfortunately this great G-man died in 1957


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