Looking Back: August 10, 2012

50, 75, 100 Years Ago in the Forward

Published September 12, 2012, issue of August 10, 2012.
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100 Years Ago

1912 Mrs. Sadie Teitelbaum and her brother, Benjamin Silver, have been indicted for the murder of one Leo Scamen in Brooklyn. Teitelbaum and Scamen ran a restaurant on Surf Avenue in Coney Island. Scamen was found just outside the restaurant, dying of a gunshot wound. As Scamen was rushed to the hospital, police entered the restaurant and inquired of Teitelbaum and Silver as to the events that resulted in Scamen’s shooting. Both claimed not to have heard any shots fired and to know nothing. Police asked Scamen who shot him, but he couldn’t, or wouldn’t, say. He died two days later. When Brooklyn police returned to the restaurant to investigate further, it was discovered that Teitelbaum and Silver had fled. The pair was subsequently found in Maine, and local police returned the siblings to Brooklyn.

75 Years Ago

1937 Jacob “Gurrah” Shapiro and Louis “Lepke” Buchalter have been indicted, together with 14 others, on charges of leading a $2 million per year racketeering ring in the garment industry. Shapiro, Buchalter and nine other gangsters are currently on the lam; the charges were announced in their absence. The remaining five members of the gang were indicted in New York State Supreme Court. The court provided a list of all indicted. In addition to “Gurrah” and “Lepke,” they include: Benjamin Levine, Samuel Weiner, Yosl Freedman, Herman “Whitey” Huran, Hymie Greenberg, Solomon Feinberg, Henry Teitelbaum, Paul Berger, David Horn, Joseph Amaruso, Joseph Roccabano and Leon Sharf.

50 Years Ago

1962 The body of Shloymele Schwartz, a 7-year-old Hasidic boy from Brooklyn, was found in a septic tank after the child went missing in July from his summer camp, Rav Tov, in the Catskills. Apparently, Shloymele had gone for a walk with an elder child after saying goodbye to his father. The elder boy returned from the walk, but Shloymele did not. By the evening, when it became apparent that the child was missing, the camp director called the police. More than 1,000 people joined in the search for boy. After nearly two weeks, the body was found. The Ulster County sheriff stated that the only possibility in this case is murder, as Shloymele could not have gotten into the septic tank on his own.


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