Although he met his end in front of a Chicago movie house on July 22, 1934, the nation’s first Public Enemy Number One eventually found his way back home again to Indiana. Alongside Eli Lilly, James Whitcomb Riley, and President Benjamin Harrison, legendary gangster John Dillinger is buried in Crown Hill Cemetery in Indianapolis .
Indiana has consistently captured the attention of Hollywood with its legendary athletic figures and traditions. Such films as Knute Rockne: All-American, The Crowd Roars, Breaking Away and Hoosiers have lent a glamour to Hoosier sports once reserved for its gangsters.
While John Dillinger might be considered Indiana’s most notorious gangster, and the Reno gang of Seymour credited with having invented the train robbery, a different Hoosier miscreant may have left the largest footprint on American folklore. Before astronaut Virgil “Gus” Grissom put Mitchell on the map, the small town’s best-known native son was undoubtedly Sam Bass.