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Jack Kelly

Jack Kelly is a noted author who writes both novels and nonfiction. His most recent book, Gunpowder--Alchemy, Bombards, and Pyrotechnics: The History of the Explosive That Changed the World, was released in 2005. 

Articles by this Author

Poker, November/December 2006 | Vol. 57, No. 6
The very American career of the card game you can learn in 10 minutes and work on for the rest of your life
Criminal, October 2003 | Vol. 54, No. 5
From Connected to Collected
For nearly a hundred years, the FBI has been fighting for America—with its discipline and professionalism often at odds with its shadowy, extralegal tactics.
Organized crime? Mafia? A lot of people, including J. Edgar Hoover, said it was mere folklore—until one day in 1957 an alert New York state trooper set up a roadblock in a small town. What followed was low comedy with high consequences.
WHAT LASTS a couple of seconds, ravishes the eye, and calms the soul? Americans have known since 1608.
Rescue Squad, May/June 1996 | Vol. 47, No. 3
TODAY NEARLY HALF a million men and women serve two-thirds of the country in a crucial volunteer service that began only recently—and only because a nine-year-old boy witnessed a drowning
Gangster City, April 1995 | Vol. 46, No. 2
During a single decade Chicago invented modern organized crime and saw John Dillinger, the most famous of the hit-and-run freelancers, die in front of one of its movie houses. For those who know where to look, quiet streets and sad buildings still tell the story of an incandescent era.


Panamanians gather in the streets after the riots in 1964. (Michael Rougier/Time Life Pictures/Getty Images) Few Americans know that January 9 is a national holiday in Panama, and even fewer know why. Today is Martyrs’ Day—commemorating an outbreak of violence between Panama and the United States…
. . . Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. That mantra, a Supreme Court justice once estimated, is familiar to two billion people around the world, mostly from its regular recitation in television crime dramas. Of all the rights guaranteed under our Constitution, no…
Martin Luther King Jr. addresses a crowd from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial on Aug. 28, 1963.  On August 28, 1963, at a mass gathering on the Mall in Washington, D.C., Martin Luther King, Jr., gave a speech that would become a beacon of the civil rights movement and that historians would rank…