The January 19, 2017 meeting of the Twentieth Century Club of Garrettsville was held at the Garrettsville United Methodist Church, 8223 Park Ave., Garrettsville. Greetings to all came from the president, Karen Miller and secretary pro tem, Karen Ziarko, called the roll. A note from absent member, Jan Boehm, was read.
The occasion was Guest Night and the roll call was answered by introducing the member’s guests and also relating to the group what gangster movies rated highest among their cinematic experiences. These, as one might imagine ,were quite varied and included “The Godfather”( all of them), “Pulp Fiction”, “Bonnie and Clyde”, “The Sting”, “Scarface”, “Bugsie” among others. Nobody mentioned “Who Killed Roger Rabbit”.
The program for the evening was a trainwreck…about a train robbery, the Last Great Train Robbery in the United States, which took place in Garrettsville in 1935. The workers and waiting passengers at the Erie R.R. station had no idea that they would be going down in history when a carload of tommygun-toting members of the Al (Creepy) Karpis Gang pulled up at the station, boarded the cars—especially the targeted mail car—threatened the train crew, took cash and valuables from everyone there, then made off for parts unknown. Since there was U.S. mail involved, it was a federal crime, so federal agents( who at some point had come to have been known as “G-Men”, government men)– came to town. After major efforts by the FBI and the investigative arm of the United States Postal Service, Al Karpis—who was ratted out by a vengeful former girlfriend—was captured by the FBI (J. Edgar Hoover took the credit) and spent many years (26)as a guest of the federal government at Alcatraz. He was the only Public Enemy # 1 at that time to be taken alive. His early connection with the Ma Barker gang was part of his resume’ as well.
Refreshments were then offered to the thirty or so members and guests in attendance by co-hostesses Patricia Amor, Jeanette Hall, Iva Walker and Cherrie Wolfe.
The next meeting will be on February 2 at the James A. Garfield Elementary School in the Professional Development Room. Hostess Karen Ziarko will be assisted by Lucy Galayde and the program will be presented by Maureen See. Roll call will involve shared memories of puppy love.