Richard James "Two Gun" Hart, born Vincenzo Capone

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Richard James "Two Gun" Hart (Capone), born Vincenzo Capone

Also Known As: "Jim"
Birthdate:
Birthplace: Angri, Campania, Italy
Death: October 01, 1952 (60)
Homer, Dakota County, Nebraska, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Gabriele FitzGerald Capone and Teresina Capone Capone
Husband of Kathleen M. Winch
Father of Richard Hart; Sherman W. Hart; Private and Private
Brother of Ralph "Bottles" Capone; Frank Capone; Alphonse "Scarface Al" Gabriel Capone; Ermino Capone, stillborn; Ermina Capone and 7 others

Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Richard James "Two Gun" Hart, born Vincenzo Capone

James Capone

Vincenzo, called James by family members, was born in 1882. When he was 16 he ran away from home to join the circus. A year after he departed he wrote the family to say that he was fine and not to worry. The letter was postmarked Wichita, Kan.

James enjoyed living in the Midwest, moving from town to town, doing his best to hide his Brooklyn accent. He never revealed his Italian ancestry, preferring people to mistake him for Mexican, Indian or a combination of both. He became fascinated with guns and spent hours shooting at empty beer bottles and tin cans, becoming an expert marksman.

During World War I he enlisted in the infantry and served in France, rising to the rank of lieutenant. There he received a sharpshooter's medal from the commander of the American Expeditionary Force, Gen. John J. Pershing. All the while his family knew nothing of his whereabouts and years would pass before they heard from him again.

Returning from Europe, James ended up in Homer, Neb., where he would further distance himself from his infamous brothers by taking the name Richard Hart in honor of a popular silent-movie cowboy of that time. He married in 1919 and had three sons, in quick succession. While the rest of his brothers drifted into a life of crime, James became a Prohibition agent in 1920.

As an agent he led many raids; most of his arrests ended with convictions. Several times his raids created sensational headlines in the local newspapers. His successful string of raids earned him the nickname "Two-Gun" Hart. Using disguises, he entered towns to do undercover investigating into local bootlegging operations. In 1923, he was involved in a shooting in which an innocent man was killed. Although a formal inquiry cleared him of any wrongdoing, the incident tarnished his image. By 1924 the newspapers had found out and reported that that "Two-Gun" Hart was related to the Chicago Capones, a revelation that caused Hart and his family to leave Homer.

He now began to reestablish his relationship with his family. Once a year, without telling his wife where or why he was going, he traveled alone to Chicago, usually during the holidays. He kept his children in the dark about their notorious uncles, although rumors about their father's relationship to them would occasionally surface.

In 1926 Hart became a special agent of the Bureau of Indian Affairs. He moved to a Cheyenne Indian reservation in South Dakota. Here he and his wife had a fourth son. During the summer of 1927, Hart served as a bodyguard for President Calvin Coolidge when the President and his family vacationed in the Black Hills. Coolidge had not known his protector was the brother of the most infamous gangster of all time.

A short time later Hart moved to Idaho, close to the Washington State border, near the Spokane Indian reservation. While there he was involved in the arrests of at least 20 wanted killers. He spent the next four years in the Northwest moving from one Indian reservation to another, chasing bootleggers and outlaws. He got into scrapes with both outlaw Indians and law enforcement. Once again he would go to trial, this time for killing a fugitive Indian.

In 1931, during the midst of the Depression, Hart returned to Homer, Neb., and his job as a Prohibition agent. When Prohibition ended in December of 1933, Hart accepted a position as a justice of the peace but the pay was low and he soon had to take on several odd jobs to make ends meet. As 1940 approached things Hart could not afford to pay his light bill; the power company was threatening to shut off his electricity.

Hart swallowed his pride and asked his family for help. His brother Ralph insisted that he come up to his summer home in Mercer, Wis., and make his appeal for help in person. Hart made the long trek. When he got back to Homer he was wearing a brand new suit and had a roll of $100 dollar bills. He would not reveal where the money came from. When Hart made a return trip to Mercer to see Ralph the following summer he was shocked to find Al there. Al, who had been released from Alcatraz in 1939, was convalescing from complications from syphilis. In the book Mr. Capone by Robert J. Schoenberg, Hart said it was hard to tell how sick Al was because he "looked healthy and happy; he just didn't have much of a memory."

During the early 1950s Hart was called to testify at an income-tax evasion trial involving Ralph. This was Ralph's second encounter with the IRS. Ralph, without informing Hart, had listed him as the owner of his Mercer home. Hart bailed his brother out by claiming this was true. Hart returned to Homer after the trial and died there on Oct. 1, 1952 at the age of 60. Source: http://www.crimemagazine.com/brothers-capone

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Richard James "Two Gun" Hart, born Vincenzo Capone's Timeline

1892
March 28, 1892
Angri, Campania, Italy
1922
1922
Age 29
NE, United States
1923
December 14, 1923
Age 31
Brooklyn, NY, United States
1952
October 1, 1952
Age 60
Homer, Dakota County, Nebraska, United States