In 1935 the city of Detroit, Michigan was in the grip of the Great Depression. Unemployment was high and many of the city's residents were barely getting by. There were some things that happened that year in Detroit that gave the residents something to cheer about. 1935 was a great year for sports in the Motor City.
1935 was the year that the Detroit Tigers won a baseball championship, the Detroit Lions were football champions, the Detroit Red Wings were the hockey champions and a boxer from Detroit named Joe Louis was on his way to becoming the heavyweight boxing champion.
There were also some very evil things happening that year in Detroit. A secretive society called the Black Legion was committing hate crimes. This group had a large membership and many of the members were well connected. The Black Legion had many members who were also police officers. Many Legion members worked for the massive Ford plant at River Rouge.
In his book "Terror in the City of Champions - Murder, Baseball, and the Secret Society that Shocked Depression Era Detroit" Tom Stanton weaves these various story lines together to present a vibrant picture of a city that was simultaneously at the bottom and at the top.