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Lost Structures of

East Chicago, Indiana

1st National Bank & Trust Co. Building


Note: his building has now been demolished and replaced with a Walgreens, despite the fact that there were and are numerous available vacant lots on the street.

JOHN DILLINGER! The very name conjures up images of black-and-white newsreels, of vintage automobile chases, of suspense and intrigue.

Paroled in May 1933, Dillinger formed a gang and set out to rob banks. Captured four months later, he was rescued by gang members. After robberies in several states, he was arrested in Arizona, returned to Indiana and jailed at the Crown Point Jail. He executed a famous escape (using a gun carved from wood--not soap!) on Mar. 3, 1934, and continued his bank robberies. In this year, he robbed East Chicago's 1st National Bank & Trust Co.,* the subject of this page.

The object of a massive manhunt by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), he was lured to the Biograph Theater in Chicago (now a national landmark) on July 22, 1934, by Anna Sage, the mysterious so-called Lady in Red. There FBI agents gunned him down

.

*Source of information: Lake County Interim Report, Indiana Historic Sites and Structures Inventory by Historic Landmarks Foundation of Indiana.

(Information on Dillinger from Compton's Interactive Encyclopedia 1998 for Macintosh 1997 The Learning Company, Inc.)

East Chicago - 1st National Bank & Trust Co. Building - - bank that Dillinger robbed

1st National Bank & Trust Co. Building
720 Chicago Ave.
Neoclassical
c. 1920
Photo by Timothy Arends

 

East Chicago 1st National Bank & Trust Co. Building lobby

The skylighted two-story marble lobby of the building presents a grand appearance.

Photo by Tina Yee; courtesy of the Post-Tribune

 

1st National Bank & Trust Co. Building lobby

Column detail of the lobby.

Photo by Tina Yee; courtesy of the Post-Tribune

 

1st National Bank & Trust Co. Building teller's window

Ornate detail of the teller's window.

Photo by Tina Yee; courtesy of the Post-Tribune

 

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