World History 1931

About the history of the world in 1931, the Empire State Building completed, the first transpacific flight, Al Capone jailed for tax evasion.

TWO CENTURIES OF WORLD HISTORY: 1778-1978

1931

* New York's 102-story Empire State Building was completed.

July 1 Railroad tracks traversed the width of Africa for the first time with the opening of rail service between Benguela, Angola, on the Atlantic and Beira, Mozambique, on the Indian Ocean.

Oct. 3-5 Aviators Clyde Pangborn and Hugh Herndon, Jr., flew from Sabishiro, Japan, to Wenatchee, Wash., in the first nonstop transpacific flight.

Oct. 24 Convicted of income tax evasion, Chicago gangster Al Capone, 32, listened to Federal Judge Wilkerson hand down the stiffest penalty ever conferred on a tax evader-11 years in jail, $80,000 in fines and court costs; request for bail pending appeal was denied. The Naplesborn underworld boss, who had parlayed a fourth-grade education into a $6.5 million-a-week empire of gambling, bootlegging, prostitution, dance halls, and other rackets, served eight years. By the time of his release, however, he had been driven daffy by the effects of syphilis. He died in 1947.

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