Jake Guzik
Guzik large


May 20, 1886 Kraków, Galicia


February 21, 1956 Chicago, Illinois, U.S





Cause of death

Heart attack

Resting place

Oak Woods Cemetery

Jake Guzik was known as the Chicago mob's financial genius. A pimp, his friendship with mob leader Al Capone began when he overheard two gangsters planning Capone's murder, and he quickly got word to Capone of the plot. In gratitude, Capone took him into his organization, and when he discovered Guzik's financial aptitude, eventually made him treasurer of his outfit. A major part of Guzik's job was paying off local police and political leaders, which is where he got the nickname "Greasy Thumb" (a name that was actually first applied to his brother, also a mob bagman, then later transferred to him).

A short, fat man who detested violence and was incapable of even picking up a gun, he endeared himself to Capone to the extent that once, when a local hood beat up Guzik, an outraged Capone tracked the gangster to a local bar, walked up to him and emptied a revolver into his head. Guzik was trusted not only by Capone but also by other Mafia leaders outside of Chicago, and despite the internecine squabbles, turf fights and gang wars that erupted regularly among Mafia families, Guzik was never part of them and was considered above them by other Mafia leaders.

Although federal and state authorities had long been after Guzik, they only managed to land him in prison for a few years on an income tax evasion rap, and when he got out he went right back to his old activities. He died of a heart attack in Chicago in February 21,1956.

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