Cover

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Title Page, Copyright Page, Quote

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Table of Contents

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pp. vii-viii

List of Figures

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p. ix

List of Tables

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p. x

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Acknowledgments

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pp. xi-xii

In any work that is the product of several years of research a large number of debts are incurred. As this one did not begin as a book but as a private interest in the author’s own community, the roster of those who offered suggestions, pointed to leads, or assisted in many small but significant ways is probably incomplete. ...

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Introduction: Beyond the Panicked Crowd

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pp. 1-10

The image of frantic crowds crushing in upon the ornate doors of a bank is one of the most enduring symbols of the Great Depression. Alongside the forlorn man hawking apples on a street corner, the overloaded Model T’s of Okies heading further west and the tin and canvas shacks of innumerable Hoovervilles, ...

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Chapter 1. Blowing Up the Bubble

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pp. 11-39

Toledo’s real estate bubble began on a beautiful, clear Sunday in the spring of 1912 when E. H. “Harry” Close, a fastidious man whose flawlessly manicured nails were often commented upon, threw a grand opening celebration for his new rural housing development, “Homewood.” ...

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Chapter 2. Banksters and Bosses

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pp. 40-60

While it was important for Toledo’s real estate speculators to gain control of the city’s government, and thereby push through the building of the necessary infrastructure for their development projects, it was just as critical for the city’s bankers to capture the state department that watched and regulated their activities. ...

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Chapter 3. The Spark

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pp. 61-89

William H. Gunckel was the sort of amiable sport that everyone liked. Naturally, this short, cherubic Toledo banker was the easy choice of his colleagues to organize the week’s entertainments for the Ohio Bankers’ convention. His job was not easy. Not only were there a great number of men to be entertained—over a thousand conventioneers overflowed Toledo’s hotel rooms— ...

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Chapter 4. The Politics of Liquidation

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pp. 90-110

Almost a year to the day after the Security-Home Bank closed for good, the auctioneer began gaveling away a large collection of antique furniture, grandfather’s clocks, safes, and paintings. From the look of things, it appeared that the lavish “palaces of finance” that were the most visible symbol of the excesses that had brought the city of Toledo to ruin were being dismantled. ...

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Chapter 5. Prosecutions and Protests

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pp. 111-149

Toledo’s banking collapse created a social crisis that went far beyond its shattering impact on the region’s economy. Toledo’s economic losses could be calculated with a fair degree of precision, and over time, perhaps a long time, the lost capital would be recovered and reaccumulated. ...

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Epilogue

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pp. 150-160

In 1932 a Polish grocer leased the old Security-Home Opeika Bank branch on Lagrange Avenue. He removed the wooden shutters from the large front windows, swept out the dust, installed new counters, and applied a coat of whitewash to turn the lobby into a corner store. ...

Notes

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pp. 161-180

Bibliography

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pp. 181-188

Index

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pp. 189-196