The legendary story is well known and usually can be found in every book that covers the gangster era. 

During the arrest of gangster Alvin Karpis in New Orleans, the Director, Clyde Tolson and others were present including FBI Agent W. L. "Buck" Buchanan.   The Agents, many of whom were flown in at the last moment from outside regions, realized a small problem at the arrest scene.  None of them had brought handcuffs.

The story goes that a necktie was used to bind Karpis and many writers and researchers have today attributed that necktie to another legendary Agent present.....SA Clarence Hurt.  The origins as to why many believed it was Hurt's tie are unknown, but some have guessed it may have originated with Hurt's son, now deceased.  Perhaps some confusion on his part with the story as related to him by his father. 

Regardless, we now know that's not the case. 

In 2008, after seeing this site, the son of SA Buchanan contacted us from Austin, Texas where he's an accomplished dental surgeon.  Accordingly, the son, "Buck" Buchanan related to us that in fact, it was his dad's tie (as told to him by his father) that was used to bind Karpis and he supplied two letters between his dad and J. Edgar Hoover dated in 1940 that pretty much substantiates that.  As you'll see, it was somewhat of a comical event for the Director and others. 

In 1940, SA Buchanan sent Hoover, as you'll see from the letters, the original tie that he used in the Karpis arrest. 


1964 News Interview With Hoover - Still Had The NecktieIn October, 2008, this matter was discussed with FBI historian Dr. John Fox, in addition to Mr. Cartha "Deke" Deloach, Hoover's Number Three Man, with the ultimate question of "does the Karpis necktie, sent by Buchanan to Hoover,  still exist somewhere in the confines of the FBI or the Hoover Foundation? 

The answer was "No" in both cases and today, the legendary necktie is lost to history.    

To see letters regarding this matter this matter, click the links below.

April, 1940 letter from SA W. L. "Buck" Buchanan

April, 1940 letter from Hoover