20th Century, Crime, History, Minnesota, Uncategorized

Dillinger Escapes!

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placeography.org

Mar 31, 1934
Notorious bank robber John Dillinger escapes authorities by blasting his way out of a Lexington Avenue apartment house in Saint Paul. Four months later “Public Enemy No. 1” is killed by federal agents in a gun battle outside the Biograph Theater in Chicago.*

“What made them do it?” This is a common question that the law-abiding portion of society has of the criminally minded. To better investigate, let us lay out some of what is known in the days leading up to this infamous Dillinger event.

03/03/34 – Dillinger escapes from jail using a wooden gun, and steals a Sheriff’s car.**

03/06/34 – Dillinger robs bank in Sioux Falls, SD. with Baby Face Nelson and others. The heist nets them approximately $49,500.**

03/07/34 – The Department of Investigation, (FBI), because in stealing and transporting a sheriff’s car he commits a Federal crime.**

03/13/34 – Dillinger robs bank in Mason City, IA. with gang, and is injured in shoulder. The theft yields about $52,000.**
03/14/34 – Dillinger is treated at home of Dr. Nels Mortenson at 2522 Fairmount Av. St. Paul, MN.**

03/16/34 – Dillinger arrives in Chicago and attempts to obtain divorce from the husband of his girlfriend Billie Frechette.**

03/19/34 – Frechette delivers sums of money and wooden gun to Audrey Hancock and Dillinger’s father.**

03/20/34 – Dillinger and Frechette rent apartment together in St. Paul, MN.**

03/30/34 – Dillinger and Frechette host a raucous party at the Lincoln Court apartments which lasts most of the night.**

03/31/34 – The caretaker tips off the Department of Investigation, (FBI), and Dillinger and Frechette escape after shoot-out. Dillinger receives wound in the left calf.**

“For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.” Romans 8:2 ESV ***

What shall we pray for this tragic event, and the transgressions of John Dillinger? Lord, we give You thanks that You are the author of the law of life that has set us free from separation and death. You are the Good Father that waits for all prodigal sons and daughters to stop rebelling, turn around, and come back home.

You are the only proper Judge of all humanity, whether those who do justly, or those who live in defiance. Your character is not defiled by our hatreds, or limited to our finite vantage point of our neighbor’s life. Give us humility and wisdom to watch this event with You, and to receive Your Rhema Word for ourselves and our state.

To open, Your Word tells us that we become both what we practice, and what we think about.
“Whoever seeks good finds favor, but evil comes to the one who searches for it.” **** Proverbs 11:27 NIV
“As someone thinks within himself, so he is.” Proverbs 23:7

Dillinger’s calendar is a portrayal of some of his thoughts and actions just for the month of March 1934. His actions betray a mind almost singularly set on crime, and personal gain. He thinks of self and worships self. He even steals a “marriage” with Billie from her husband in prison?!

Will You forgive any in our society in his day that idolized him as a folk hero? Will You forgive those who capitalized on his notorious contempt for for the law; even using him to sell their brand of cars? Will You forgive the press of his day for their greedily hyping and sensationalizing his story to sell more newspapers? We traded our scruples to be participants in his defiling story; they sold it, and we, the public bought it. Why are we such passive thinkers and indirect participants in crime? Have mercy on us!

Will You release us from the curse of worshipping an antihero like Dillinger in Saint Paul, and throughout Minnesota in the present? We idolize thugs in the music business, and our youths have become more cruel. We venerate icons of technology, though they betray our privacy for gain, and have become voyeurs. We steal from our neighbors and employers with liberality, and vote for politicians who steal our liberty. By the Authority of Jesus Christ, we break the spirit of the Antihero over our society!

Show us a better way in the future! Bless us to report crime in ways that do not honor or popularize or capitalize on the worst actors in our culture. Bless us to receive Your thinking about those committed to lawless thinking that leads them to lawless actions. May we practice “meditating on Your laws day and night” like King David! May we agree with Your thoughts, spoken through the prophet Micah;
“He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” *****

* P.T.H. cites timeline formerly at this URL: mnhs.org/about/dipity_timeline.htm
The Minnesota Historical Society Web site, http://www.mnhs.org, is fantastic! Check it out! Images are from https://images.google.com/?gws_rd=ssl; again, an amazing resource!
** http://www.johndillinger.com/index.php/timeline/march-1934
*** https://biblehub.com/romans/8-2.htm
**** https://biblehub.com/proverbs/11-27.htm
***** https://biblehub.com/micah/6-8.htm

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10 thoughts on “Dillinger Escapes!

  1. Brother, your writings and prayers of remission have always spoken to my spirit and bore witness to the areas where Father has shown you we need to cleanse.

    I don’t think I have ever heard your prophetic function as clearly as in this post. I prayed the prayer of agreement out loud in this blog. Thank you my fellow watchman.

    your brother
    David NY

    • Wow! Thanks for being an ally! I am moved to talk to Dad first, then sort out our brother-sister squabbles. I’m ashamed of the years I gave to the illusion of being bad enough to be a punk or metal musician, hedonistic enough to be a pop musician, and arrogant enough to be a folk musician. It pains me to think of the life I gave because I bought the antihero dream. Thank G-d for the freedom of the gospel!

    • I’m grateful for you taking time to respond! We have a, sometimes, incredibly lonely call. I get excited about what the Lord will release when we move an inch towards Him. No one mourns lost sons like Dillinger more than Him. But we also need to mourn the lost innocence of our family that allowed their passive spirits to be enticed by admiration for a “bad boy”. That’s what hits me between the eyes. I’m the kid who was trying hard, but not rooted in the truth OR the Holy Spirit. I almost went over the same cliff as my friends who hated G-d?!?

      • You walk that fine line that I personally, have seldom seen.

        You have brought me more encouragement than you know. I always have been prone to discouragement (I have been getting lovingly corrected in regard to this) as a result of this lonely call. Again, thank you. This made me tear up. Reach out anytime.
        David NY

      • It is, and will be, worth it. Our heaviness is only short-term. I think most folks in this call experience the sadness, depression, rejection BECAUSE we are kind of the nervous system of Christ’s body. It took many years, and I’m still on the way, to check in w/ the HS and do inventory. Am I blue because I view myself as the solution? Am I lonely because I’m so used to being rejected that I self reject? Am I out of whack because I have a worship dysfunction, not remembering that Jesus blew straight through every obstacle of the enemy because His JOY was complete? Am I thinking too much? Time to stop the brain and praise G-d by working with my hands, make a meal for someone, etc.

      • One of the great tragedies of this walk is that the further we enter into the experiential reality of our citizenship; the more we transition from servant to friend, and the more our accountability increase… the more we are prone to see everyone else as a “sheep.” This has caused a great many of the members who could be edified from one another to become unnecessarily isolated in our call.

        Conversely, without resting and growing in understanding our true identity in Christ and the fullness and completion of our worth, so many of us are trying to validate our place in the Body…

        He is working on all this though. 🙂

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