National Affairs: Nothing So Pretty

Abovestairs in his elegant Manhattan saloon, the Stork Club, ex-bootlegger Sherman Billingsley moves with exquisite aplomb. He is the Ward McAllister of café society. He dispenses a magnum of champagne to a favorite here, a fleeting, boyish smile to an attractive décolletage there. And he gives mad, mad gifts to the charmed inner circle of his customers.

Belowstairs, among the kitchen mechanics, he is the very devil of a fellow, too. There he rations out three beers and a jigger of whiskey twice a day to the cooks and dishwashers. And there, some say, he also goes in for union-busting and Bowery...

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