- Hardcover: 382 pages
- Publisher: Prometheus; 1st edition (May 6, 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 161614923X
- ISBN-13: 978-1616149239
- Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.3 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 69 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #105,461 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Mob and the City: The Hidden History of How the Mafia Captured New York Hardcover – May 6, 2014
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“In his rich, well-researched first book, Hortis details the rise of the Mafia while debunking numerous myths. . . . If there’s a better book on the early history of Cosa Nostra in America, I haven’t seen it.”
—Jerry Capeci, Gang Land News, coauthor of Mob Boss
"An exhaustively researched, yet highly readable history of exactly how the Italian Mafia became the dominant organized crime group in New York City for most of the twentieth century. Using newly uncovered documents and primary sources, Hortis cuts through many of the myths that surround the Mafia and offers new angles and insight on a subject that continues to fascinate researchers and readers. The Mob and The City is an exciting addition to the Mafia true-crime canon.”
—Scott M. Deitche, author of The Silent Don: The Criminal Underworld of Santo Trafficante Jr.
“Hortis demolishes what we thought we knew about the Mob...and builds a new history upon a solid foundation of exclusive documentary evidence and superb insight.... Essential reading for all who seek to truly understand the phenomenon of organized crime in America’s most populous city.”
—Thomas Hunt, editor of Informer: The History of American Crime and Law Enforcement
"An outstanding work of scholarship that highlights misinformation and myth attached to the history of the Mafia in New York.”
—Dr. Howard Abadinsky, professor of criminal justice, St. John’s University, author of Organized Crime
“Much has been made of the Cosa Nostra being a national crime organization. And while that was certainly true, New York was always its headquarters—the only city with more than one resident family (there are five) and, because of that, the birthplace of the Commission. The Mob and the City provides both an overview and an analysis of how that came to be, and it offers an interesting alternative to mob boss Joe Bonanno’s generally accepted version of Cosa Nostra's origins. Lucid and thoughtful, it is well worth reading.”
—Ronald Goldstock, commissioner of the Waterfront Commission of New York Harbor and former director of the New York State Organized Crime Task Force
About the Author
C. Alexander Hortis, JD, is an attorney specializing in commercial litigation and constitutional law. He has published articles on the Mafia in The Informer: The History of American Crime & Law Enforcement and in New York Law School Law Review.
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The truth about mobsters is that they really are nobodies wanting to be somebody and the oath of omerta is, and always has been, a myth. They will speak to save their own skin and will always feel paranoid about their brothers in crime knowing that "I'd better get him before he gets me."
I especially enjoyed the last two chapters which involved the assassination of "The Lord High Executioner", "The Mad Hatter" himself, Albert Anastasia in the barbershop of the Park Sheraton Hotel in October of 1957. It has been presented in other books that two of the Gallo brothers were involved in this "hit" but author Hortis has other beliefs. He mentions Steve Grammauta as the lead gunman but neglects to mention anyone else. Perhaps we shall never know. This event led to the conclave that took place in November in Apalachin, New York, at the home of Joseph Barbara Senior. This, also, was a very interesting chapter in which, oddly enough, the oath of omerta held as the mobsters denied they'd done anything wrong in getting together to wish their friend Joesph Barbara well while a few others came up with some laughable excuses. A number of the mobsters made a fiasco of the event by scattering through the woods to avoid the law but the authorities had absolutely nothing to hold them on.
When the news of Apalachin reached the public F. B. I. Director J. Edgar Hoover finally admitted the reality regarding the mafia which he had vigorously denied the existence of. Nobody likes to be proven wrong and Hoover had to publicly admit what he may have believed but couldn't face up to. This, perhaps, was the most profitable outcome of the clandestine meeting of the mafia nabobs get-together as far as the authorities were concerned.
The book contains a number of photographs, most of them small, in addition to charts which the reader may or may not find interesting. Much of America's history is infamous and this book on the New York City mobsters through 1957 is a must for your crime library.