Bonnie And Clyde: The History Of An Infamous Crime Spree

Amelia Earhart was the first woman to fly solo above the Atlantic Ocean in 1932. Radio City Music Hall is now open in New York City. A atom has also been split for first time. However, the election of Franklin D. Roosevelt in New York City in 1932 was a sign of America’s current climate. He was elected with the hope of lifting America from its horrible poverty. The Great Depression began in 1929 and lasted until 1939. All hell broke loose during the twenties-thirties. The government was not effective and the economy was at its worst. Many people felt lost and cheated during this period. This was when criminals became heroes.

Bonnie Parker, Clyde Barrow and others began their crimes spree at the height of World War II. “The media showed the American all over as happy with the exploits made by the soap-opera gang,” (Williams 338). Bonnie and Clyde made instant celebrity not only for the exploits they did but also for the uncatchable charm and gorgeous looks. Bonnie and Clyde were forced in to a two year long crime spree after the Great Depression. The police robbed them of small convenience and bank stores, shot civilians, and then killed them in an ambush. Everyday, the middle class experienced poverty during the Great Depression. “Anger generated within society in the 1930s, combined with a newfound tolerance ,…of lawlessness led to the creation of the right environment for the rise and development the Dustbowl Desperadoes’. The “Dustbowl Desperadoes”, or everyday criminals, were people who fell prey to the Great Depression. These individuals were becoming heroes. People needed something to hold onto during the Great Depression. Criminals stole what was theirs. In the case of prohibition, “thirsty Americans” needed someone who could outwit the government’s ban on alcohol. The ghetto gangs started supplying liquor and were regarded as heroes, which led to them becoming wealthy. Bonnie and Clyde made their illegal and reckless ways of prospering in the midst of the Great Depression. Bonnie Parker was greatly affected during the Depression. However, Bonnie Parker wasn’t one to resort to criminal behavior.

Bonnie was a charming young girl with freckles. Bonnie loved fashion and earned high grades. She was also a promising young writer who won the Williams 335 county literary contest. Bonnie lost her father at the age of four. Bonnie’s parents died leaving her family without a breadwinner. Bonnie moved with her family to West Dallas to live in the slums with her grandparents. Bonnie had high hopes of becoming an actor and ending poverty. However, the slums made it very difficult for her to achieve these goals. Bonnie married her classmate Roy Thornton at sixteen. Thornton was a victim of physical abuse and was sentenced to prison for a few small robberies. Bonnie met Clyde Barrow, a man who would transform her life.

Clyde Barrow is a North Eastern Texas teen. Clyde was the fifth child in a family of poor farmers. He and his family suffered the Great Depression because of the “dustbowl”, which is a period when there were dust storms caused by drought. Bonnie moved his family to West Dallas. He wanted to be an artist, but his admirable dreams ended there. Clyde got into trouble early on. He and Buck stole a vehicle and drove it around the city one night. Clyde managed to escape after Buck was captured by the police. Buck refused to give up Clyde while being interrogated. Clyde was determined to rob another store the following night, despite being captured by his brother. Bonnie Parker was Clyde’s twenty-year-old girlfriend. Clyde was sentenced within two years of their first meeting. Bonnie felt deeply distressed. She vowed that she would help Clyde escape. Bonnie got a gun and escaped with Clyde. However, they were caught a week later. Clyde was sent to fourteen years hard labor, and finally transferred to Eastham State Prison. Clyde suffered repeated rapes and assaults by Eastham prison inmates. His criminal motivations were changed from boredom and revenge by this incident. Clyde was determined to escape prison. Clyde sought the help of a prisoner to remove his big toe to qualify for medical parole. He did not know that Clyde would be released from prison within two weeks, due to overcrowding. Clyde could no longer walk and needed to drive with socks. But he was free. Clyde declared that he wanted to be an honest person and make a decent living. Clyde had no experience working in a real job.

Clyde was working well at the Dallas Glass and Mirror Company when he got his job. Clyde lost the job due to police frequent searches. He was also left with a bad reputation. Clyde and Ray Hamilton, a co-conspirator, were without jobs and in dire need of funds. “The two men demanded that the store owner be held at gunpoint. A gun was then fried during the unlocking. The owner of the grocery shop fell to the ground. They took the money and ran. Clyde knew that after the murder, he would have no choice but to flee the country. Bonnie accepted his invitation to join him. So began the notorious crime spree.



Kayla Russo is an educational blogger and volunteer and student. She is a 27 yo educational blogger and volunteer and student who loves to help others learn.

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