RalphTheWonderLlama posted a couple photos from Benld, Ill., which was on an alignment of Route 66 from the late 1920s to about the mid-1930s. I’d heard the town was a weekend hangout for organized-crime kingpin Al Capone, but Ralph added a story about Scarface that I hadn’t heard.
According to my dad also, there was supposedly a shootout of some kind in the small town of Benld here right in the middle of town. Something like, they were in a bar and there was an argument or something, and apparently someone “put a hit out” on a guy and he was gunned down with automatics, I’d like to think tommy guns 🙂
Benld is also famous for its Coliseum Ballroom, which was open for decades and hosted acts such as Bing Crosby up to Bob Seger and REO Speedwagon. It’s no longer a music venue, but it now thrives as an antiques mall. I recommend a stop there. The Coliseum also was inducted into the Illinois Route 66 Association’s Hall of Fame a few years ago. Regrettably, the Coliseum doesn’t have a Web site.