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The Top 5 Mob myths: Hollywood’s creative license drives misinformation

February 20, 2024

From The Godfather to Griselda, the Mob is firmly embedded in pop culture, which comes with a few drawbacks. In a medium that prioritizes entertainment over education, misconceptions are bound to spread, often becoming promoted to conventional wisdom. Budding mobsters have even been influenced by film and television in the way they see and conduct themselves. Myths propagated by pop culture have built the image of the Mob into a powerful, yet honorable, organization, detached from its real-world counterpart. Hidden behind these false premises are kernels of truth, however, so let’s dive into the five most common Mob myths to distinguish ...

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The 1863 draft riots and the birth of the New York City Police

On July 13, 1863, during the Civil War, New York City burst into flames when the federal government started a…

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Artifact Spotlight: Frank Calabrese Sr.’s handmade dictionary

“PRISON: IS WARE I AM AT,” reads an entry in the handmade dictionary of Frank Calabrese Sr., former boss of…

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Classic Mob drama ‘The Sopranos’ first aired 25 years ago

When the groundbreaking HBO series The Sopranos debuted in 1999, it was an instant hit and a critical success. It…

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They don’t just kill each other

Innocent victims of Mob violence are one of the most underreported aspects of organized crime. This is due in part…

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The Buffalo Mafia’s ill-advised art thefts

“Art Collection Is Looted; Loss Put at $1.3 million,” read a headline in the August 22, 1968, edition of the…

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Artifact Spotlight: Alternative liquor products from Prohibition

When Prohibition started on January 17, 1920, beer brewers, liquor distillers and winemakers were in a predicament. The 18th Amendment…

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‘The Green Felt Jungle,’ published 60 years ago, rattled Las Vegas

When The Green Felt Jungle was published 60 years ago, the book created a stir by detailing Mob influence and…

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