|The Black P. Stones were started by Jeff Fort and Eugene Bull (or King Bull / King Ball) Hairston. Jeff Fort was born on February 20, 1947 in Aberdeen, Mississippi. Jeff Fort’s family migrated to Chicago while many other African Americans were also moving up north from the Southern states. Jeff father John Lee Fort obtained a job at a steel producing factory on the South Side of Chicago; therefore, Jeff Fort and his ten brothers and sisters all moved up north. They moved into an apartment at 6536 S. Blackstone Ave in the Woodlawn community. At that time (1950s) there were more whites than blacks in that neighborhood; however, whites were moving out rapidly (White flight). In 1959, at the age of twelve, Jeff Fort formed a small clique of boys that acted as a gang on either the corner of 64th and Blackstone or 66th and Blackstone. There were about 10 members of the gang of young boys. They battled against gangs of white youths in the Woodlawn community and some other black gangs as well.
Jeff Fort’s crew consisted of kids that knew each other from the neighborhood or from the “Audy Home” (Cook County Temporary Juvenile Detention Center) and the “St. Charles” (the Illinois Department of Corrections state juvenile institution). In 1960 when Jeff Fort was 13 years old he was fighting with a local rival gang known as the Black Stone RAIDERS (not Rangers) from 70th street headed by Eugene “Bull” Hairston. The Raiders were older boys and Hairston was older than Fort. Hairston was a very tough gang leader that used his muscle. Fort’s gang and Hairston’s gang made a truce and merged their gangs to become the Black Stone Rangers. Back in the early 60s Jeff Fort’s nickname was Angel because he smoothed any Ranger problems over. The Rangers were a small time gang in the early 60s that engaged in petty criminal activities such as Vandalism, shoplifting and what was known as common street thuggery. One thing important to know is that at this time Eugene Hairston was the leader of the Black Stone Rangers while Jeff Fort was second in command. By 1964 the Rangers began to recruit in heavy numbers because of the heavily growing Devil’s Disciple population that began to increase in 1963.
In 1965 the Rangers met with Reverend John Fry. Rev. Fry helped the Rangers receive federal funding to help the organization develop. At that same point in time (mid-1960s) the Rangers were growing in number greatly. Rev. John Fry helped to guide Fort and Hairston to become street gang government structure. He advised them on how to organize and collect government funding in order to greatly expand their empire, and he advised them on how to handle a large number of soldiers. Hairston mainly commanded the older Stones while Fort mainly headed the young Stones. In 1966 Fort and Hairston met with a group of gang leaders that headed different gangs that were rivals of the Rangers. The two offered the gang leaders a truce and to also form a council. The council would be named The Main 21. This meant that all the gangs would unite into one alliance. They named the alliance the Black P. Stone Nation (BPSN). This alliance is very similar to the people nation that exists today. Each gang within the Main 21 BPSN was a brick in the 21 brick pyramid. The top Stone or Brick was the Black Stone Rangers. The other Bricks or Stones leaders were: Eugene Hairston (later that year Jeff Fort) head of the Black Stone Rangers, George Rose (AKA “Watusi”, “Mad Dog”), Lee “Stone” Jackson (now deceased), William Troop (AKA: “Sweet Pea”, “Sweet Jones”) (now deceased), Melvin Bailey (AKA: “Lefty”), Herbert Stevens (AKA: “Thunder”), Lawrence White (AKA: “Tom Tucker”), Adam Battiste (AKA: “Leto”), Sylvester Hutchins (AKA: “Hutch”), Charles Franklin (AKA: “Bosco”), Theotis Clark (AKA: “Thee”), Henry Cogwell (AKA: “Mickey”) (deceased commander of the Mickey Cobras), George Martin (AKA: “Porgy”), Andrew D. McChristian (AKA: “A.D.”), Fletcher Puch (AKA: “Bo Peep”, “Old Man”), Edwin Codwell (AKA: “Little Charlie”, “Caboo”), Leroy Hairston (AKA: “Mr. Maniac”, “Baby Bull”), Charles Edward Bey (AKA: “Benbolaman”, “Bear”), Herman Holmes (AKA: “Moose”) (head of the Gangster Stones who still exist today under that title), Moses Robert Jackson (AKA: “Dog”), Paul Martin (AKA: “Crazy Paul”) (deceased), Lamar Bell (AKA: “Bop Daddy”), Johnnie Jones (AKA: “Cool Johnnie”), Bernard Green (AKA: “Droop”, “The Colonel”).
Power was more or less shared among the Bricks; However, if one of the other Main 21 council members developed a massive amount of power they would mysteriously end up murdered and replaced. This is also how the first Stone symbol was adopted which was/is the 21 brick pyramid. On June 6, 1966 Eugene Hairston was sent to prison on drug charges. In the infancy of the BPSN, they had not become able to run a gang with a leader behind bars; therefore, Jeff Fort became the new leader of and undisputed leader of the BPSN at the age of 19 on the streets; However, there was still a promise made to Hairston to reclaim his throne when he was to be released. In 1968 Hairston’s top spititual leader Paul Martin “Profit Paul” was executed by the Rangers which enabled Fort to take the throne. Also in 1968 Hairston was released from prison and managed to regain some of the nation back under his wing because much of the BPSN was Hairston followers, especially the Titanic Stone branch. Later in that same year, Hairston ordered six 14 year old Rangers to kill David Barksdale who was head of the Black Disciples. He paid them $1 a piece to commit the murder. As Barksdale exited a bar that 1968 night, he was shot six times by the six Rangers but survived the attack, later dying from the gun shots in 1974.
In the late 60s the BPSN grew into incredible power for that point in time. They organized into a mob. They were at heavy odds with the Disciple Nation (Black Disciples) and the Gangster Nation that was when Stones wore red berets while the Disciples wore black berets. In order to war better with Disciples and others Fort and his mob needed money and guns; therefore, to the public eye Jeff Fort was able to disguise his mob as a group of Do-gooders that were a charitable group raising money to help the community they lived in. The Stones also used extortion tactics to extract money from small business owners by threatening violence if the store owners ignored the charities set up by Stones. Gang apologists and Liberal politicians fell for it and helped Fort raise money for his organization from the federal government. In 1969 Jeff Fort was invited to the inauguration of president Richard Nixon. Fort did not attend but sent on of his men and also Henry Cogwell to it. The BPSN successfully were put on the federal government payroll system. In 1968 the federal government found some suspicious activities within a job training program headed by the Stones. In 1968 Fort began to beef with Fred Hampton and the Black Panthers. The Black Panthers were trying to gain influence in Jeff Fort’s neighborhood, and this angered Fort. He then threatened that he would start killing Panthers if they didn’t leave. In December of 1968 Fred Hampton visited Fort at his headquarters to discuss the matter. Jeff Fort showed his power to Hampton by snapping his fingers and 100 Stones come out with shot guns, machine guns, and other guns or other weapons. Fred Hampton was then shown the power that Fort had on the streets even at his young age of 21. The Stones had already killed a Panther before this meeting, that was how the beefing began. After a while of talking Hampton agreed to pull Panther influence out of Stone territory. The Stones waged into bloody gang wars from 1966-1968 with the Disciples and the Gangsters. There were several gang related homicides during these years because of this war.
In the early 1970s the federal government was beginning to close in on Jeff Fort. As I mentioned earlier, in 1968 the federal government began investigating Fort and the Stones for misuse of government funding. The government had given the Stones $900,000 to $1.4 million dollars for the job training program, and now their investigations began to discover how Jeff Fort was mismanaging government funds for illegal activities. In 1971 John Fry stepped down from advising the BPSN. In 1972, Jeff Fort and some others were brought up on charges for mismanaging government funds from the government, he was then sentenced to time at Statesville prison until 1974. In 1974 he was transferred to Leavenworth prison until 1976. All funding to the BPSN was then shut down, but it was too late, the BPSN had already established great power and had profited from the money they received in the 1960s. The BPSN had already taken the money they received and turned it into more money. Now that the BPSN was heavily developed, Jeff Fort was able to remain the undisputed leader even while incarcerated in Leavenworth prison. While Fort was imprisoned, Mickey Cogwell (leader of the Cobra Stones, later known as Mickey Cobras) was leading the BPSN on the street. In 1974, Fort placed “Thunder” in charge of the Statesville Stones and Hairston was running the Stones in Menard. By 1974 Hairston was up for parole; therefore, he decided to send word to the Titanics that he was going to be released and to have some soldiers ready for a complete coup over Jeff Fort and regain the BPSN into Hairston’s favor. Several supporters were awaiting the parole of Hairston mainly all from the Titanic Stone branch. Hairston’s parole was denied and that was when Mickey Cogwell was able to seize control of the BPSN and cause more Hairston supporters to follow Fort which meant that those supporters that were awaiting Hairston’s return on the streets were attacked by Fort’s Stones which cause a brief bloody gang war mainly between the Titanics and the rest of the BPSN which caused some TPS leaders like “Lil Bull” Leroy Hairston to get time in prison. Statesville and Menard then fell under total control of Jeff Fort. In 1975 Eugene Hairston “King Bull” was released from prison after being incarcerated for the solicitation of the attempted murder of David Barksdale back in 1968. Right after his release Hairston set up a small crew of Stones on 70th and Paxton which was where Hairston was taking residence. One day he left his apartment to go to the cleaners on 71st when two men jumped out of a car and shot Hairston 3 times. Hairston fled to the cleaners and called for help. Hairston survived the attack then moved to the northside of Chicago where he set up the north side BPS. This is the story of how we have Stones on the north side of Chicago.
When Jeff Fort was released on March 12, 1976 he traveled to Milwaukee, WIS where he tried to convert to Islam and join the Moorish Science Temple; however, they would not accept him. Fort then started his own temple, called the Moorish Temple of America. In April 1976 Jeff Fort merged the BPSN into his new Islamic beliefs that he adopted when he was in prison. He adopted the title of EL RUKN that came from a book that was describing shrines in Mecca, this is how the birth of the eye, crescent moon, and five point star emerged. The five point star then was used on the streets but strictly as a ELRUKN symbol until 1978 when it also began to be used as the People nation symbol. There was much objection to the new Islamic order. Mickey Cogwell who was leading the Cobra Stones, objected the most. Mickey Cogwell spoke up and objected at this meeting held at “The Camp” which was at 4233 South Indiana Avenue even after Fort threatened anyone that spoke up at the meeting would be killed. On February 25, 1977 Mickey Cogwell was killed and it was rumored that Fort had him killed. The Black P. Stone gang was still in existence but mainly led by Eugene Hairston and others, the ELRUKNS were only for strong supporters of Fort.All EL RUKN members had to adopt the suffix of EL within their last name. This proved to be a massive problem because authorities were able to go on computer systems in the late 70s and 80s and find EL RUKN members easily and red flag them.
The new EL RUKN order was seen as a COUP that took the Main 21 out of power and instead Fort appointed new leaders which were: Felix Mayes, Jake Crowder, Alan Knox, Derrick Porter, Floyd Davis, Walter Pollard, Edward Williams, Roger Bowman, Bernard Green, Thomas Bates, Fred Giles, Eddie Franklin, and Andrew Fort. On April 14, 1978 Fort organized the EL-Pyramid maintenance and management corporation, which made it possible to purchase a piece of property 3945 – 3959 South Drexel that used to be known as Oakland Square Theater. When it was run by ELRUKNs it became known as “El Rukn Grand Major Temple of America” also known as The Fort. It stayed standing until June of 1990 when it was torn down. In 1978 Jeff Fort organized the PEOPLE Nation because organization of gang wars was needed on the streets. The war would then just be People against Folk. Jeff Fort invited a few gangs into the people alliance in 1978 which included: Latin Kings, Vice Lords and all their factions, Mickey Cobras, Latin Counts, Bishops, Spanish Lords, and the Insane Unknowns. In the early 80s the invitation extended to more street gangs. In 1983 Jeff Fort was arrested and sentenced to 13 years in prison for his connection to a large shipment of drugs in Mississippi, while he was incarcerated he continued to run the E LRUKNS from behind bars. There was even a pilgrimage to Mecca scheduled and the destination was Libya.
In Libya Fort’s top lieutenants made contact with Col. Moammar Kaddafi who was an enemy to the United States. During the late Spring of 1986 the EL RUKNS made two trips to Panama City, Panama to meet with Libyan delegates. They worked out a deal with the Libyans to exchange $2.5 million and an asylum in Tripoli for some high powered weapons. When the EL RUKNS were going to get the weapons they were going to launch a wide scale urban assault on the Police and other government institutions which was to be operation “RUKBOM”. Fort was then tried on terrorist charges then in 1987 Fort was sentenced to 80 years in prison in another round of convictions Fort was tried for murder charges in 1988 and sentenced to 75 more years in prison, 50 other high ranking ELRUKNS put in prison as well. In 1988 the ELRUKN name disappeared and the Black P. Stone name reappeared. This name change was also made possible after Eugene Hairston was gunned down outside the Ida B Wells housing projects in 1988. In 1991 to present day the BPS has experienced interalliance wars with the Mickey Cobras and Vice Lords. BPS still maintains good ties to other People gangs accept two gangs mainly (Vice Lords and MCs); however, in parts of the city MCs and BPS are good friends and VL factions get along with Stones too. The Black P. Stones have seven branches which is why some gangs tag a pyramid with a number 7 in it.
The seven branches include: Gangster Stones, Jet Black Stones, Rubinites (AKA “Rubes”), Future Stones, PR Stones, Corner Stones, and of course BPS. (If I am wrong about the seven branches send Chicago Gangs the 7 to Chicagogangs@aol.com, because I have heard that the Latin Stones are part of the 7, we are also looking for historical information about the gangs that I have listed here including Latin Stones).
HISTORY WRITTEN BY ZOOK