Forget what you think you know about the Mafia. After reading this book, even life-long mob aficionados will have a new perspective on organized crime.Informative, authoritative, and eye-opening, this is the first full-length book devoted exclusively to uncovering the hidden history of how the Mafia came to dominate organized crime in New York City during the 1930s through 1950s.
Based on exhaustive research of archives and secret files obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, author and attorney C. Alexander Hortis draws on the deepest collection of primary sources, many newly discovered, of any history of the modern mob.Shattering myths, Hortis reveals how Cosa Nostra actually obtained power at the inception. The author goes beyond conventional who-shot-who mob stories, providing answers to fresh questions such as: * Why did the Sicilian gangs come out on top of the criminal underworld? * Can economics explain how the Mafia families operated? * What was the Mafia's real role in the drug trade? * Why was Cosa Nostra involved in gay bars in New York since the 1930s? Drawing on an unprecedented array of primary sources, The Mob and the City is the most thorough and authentic history of the Mafia's rise to power in the early-to-mid twentieth century.
Alex Hortis is a constitutional lawyer and historian of crime. He has appeared on
national television as an on-screen personality for AMC’s The Making of the Mob
(2015), Hortis has been interviewed on NPR stations across the country and for true
crime podcasts. He has also been a featured speaker at the New York Public Library, the
Enoch Pratt Free Library, and the Mob Museum in Las Vegas.
Hortis’s first book, The Mob and the City: The Hidden History of How the
Mafia Captured New York (Prometheus, 2014), was praised by Jerry Capeci, the dean
of mob reporters, who wrote: “If there’s a better book on the early history of
Cosa Nostra in America, I haven’t seen it.”
Malcolm Gladwell quoted Hortis’s book in his article, “The Crooked Ladder:
The criminal’s guide to upward mobility” (New Yorker, Aug. 3, 2014). The New York
Post also featured Hortis’s groundbreaking work on the Mafia’s control of gay bars, in
“How NYC’s gay bars thrived because of the mob” (New York Post, May 3, 2014).
Hortis is a former federal law clerk for the United States Court of Appeals for the
Eighth Circuit. He is a graduate of New York University School of Law, where he was a
member of the Law Review. His writings have appeared in New York University Law
Review, New York Law School Review, and in book anthologies on crime.
Alex lives in Washington, DC, with his wife Kaela and their cat Jax.
Jerry Capeci, Gang Land News, coauthor of Mob Boss
Scott M. Deitche
Dr. Howard Abadinsky