This is a story of Tony Harte and his friends and lovers during the exciting years of the roaring 20s and the depression that plagued the 30s.
Most of the story takes place in Chicago, a town known for machine politics, and famous gangsters such as Al Capone and Bugs Moran. This was the background where Tony was trying to make it in the big city. All of this happens later on in the story, but first, we need to get him through school.
Tony attended Avondale School. As the story unfolds, many of his friends and cohorts also attended Avondale, a boy’s school located northwest of Chicago. Edward Cap’ Bagley bought the Avon farm in 1897 and founded the school as an orphanage for homeless urban boys. By 1920 this self-sustaining community had moved beyond an orphanage to a boarding school, the Avondale School for Boys.