Garden State gangland The rise of the mob in New Jersey

Scott M. Deitche

Book - 2018

"The Mafia in the United States might be a shadow of its former self, but in the New York/New Jersey metro area, there are still wiseguys and wannabes working scams, extorting businesses, running gambling, selling drugs, and branching out into white collar crimes. And they are continuing a tradition that's over 100 years old. Some of the most powerful mobsters on a national level were from New Jersey, and they spread their tentacles down to Florida, across the Atlantic, and out to California. And many of the stories have never been told. Deitche weaves his narrative through significant, as well as some lesser-known, mob figures who were vital components in the underworld machine. New Jersey's organized crime history has been of the most colorful in the country, serving as the home of some of the most powerful, as well as below-the-radar, mobsters in the Country. And though overshadowed by the emphasis on New York City, the mob and New Jersey have, over the years, become synonymous, in both pop culture and in law enforcement. But for all the press that has been dedicated to the mob and New Jersey, for all the law enforcement activity against the mob, and for all the pop culture references, there has never truly been an examination of the rise of the mob in New Jersey from a historical perspective. Until now. In Garden State Gangland, Scott M. Deitche sets the historical record straight by providing the first overall history of the mob in New Jersey, from the early turn of the century Black Hand gangs to the present, and looks at how influential they were was, not only to goings-on the Garden State but across the New York metro region and the country as a whole." -- Publisher's description

Saved in:

2nd Floor Show me where

1 / 1 copies available
Location Call Number   Status
2nd Floor 364.106/Deitche Checked In
Lanham : Rowman & Littlefield [2018]
Main Author
Scott M. Deitche (author)
Physical Description
xi, 215 pages ; 24 cm
Includes bibliographical references and index.
  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction
  • 1. The Newark Family
  • 2. Dry Years in Jersey
  • 3. Zwillman
  • 4. Dutch, Longy, Jerry, and the Boot
  • 5. The Moretti Hit
  • 6. The DeCavalcantes
  • 7. On the Wire
  • 8. Bayonne Joe
  • 9. Bruno and the Down Neck Mob
  • 10. The Genovese Family
  • 11. The State Commission of Investigation
  • 12. The Big Bets
  • 13. South Jersey War
  • 14. The Eagle and Video Gambling
  • 15. On the Docks
  • 16. The Receding Tide
  • Notes
  • Bibliography
  • Index
  • About the Author
Review by Choice Review

This is an excellent overview of the rise and fall of organized crime in New Jersey. Deitche is one of the few hobbyists who has crossed the literary border into general acceptance as an expert in the field of organized crime. Many authors write about New Jersey gangsters, but this is the first book that offers a holistic view over the different eras, factions, and locations. The organization is loosely arranged by geography, starting in Newark and going south to Atlantic City. Deitche does not go into detail on any one topic. His chapters are short but supported with endnotes. Although it would have been helpful to include a chapter discussing the sources and offering readers some historiography, Deitche does compile an impressive selection of primary sources, including FBI documents, interviews, memoirs, and court proceedings. Even so, he appears to rely considerably on news accounts and select secondary works, all cited in the bibliography. His target audience is the general public rather than academics. Consequently, unless students or scholars dig into the sources, the book's utility to libraries outside New Jersey is limited. Summing Up: Recommended. All regional public and academic libraries. --Walter Michael Fontane, McNeese State University

Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.
Review by Booklist Review

Pop-culture aficionados might think that there has never been a New Jersey without the Mob. As Dietche (Everything Mafia Book, 2009) explains, organized crime didn't appear in the Garden State until the very early 1900s, when the barely organized Black Hand extorted vulnerable Italian immigrant families. From there, he describes a complicated, colorful history. Newark gave birth to Jewish mobsters like Longy Zwillman and Doc Stacher and Italian Mafia like Richie the Boot Boiardo, while the corrupt Nucky Johnson (famously played by Steve Buscemi in Boardwalk Empire) turned a blind eye to the speedboats unloading illegal liquor during Prohibition in Atlantic City. Dietche explains the Robin Hood-esque code of ethics that pervaded gang culture and the dependence on municipal government that made New Jersey particularly ripe for corruption. Mostly, though, he painstakingly details the movements of the major players throughout twentieth-century organized-crime history, peppered with entertaining and sometimes-disturbing pieces of transcripts of Senate hearings, wiretaps, interviews, and photographs. From the early days to the second heyday, in the 1970s, the Mob wars of the 1990s, and the current tenuous hold on crime in New Jersey, this comprehensive history is for those who are ready to dig in beyond the pop-culture mobster.--Maguire, Susan Copyright 2018 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.