America was the land of opportunity, but for some that meant the opportunity to grab what they could. In the early 1900s, anything seemed possible if you had the smarts and gumption to pull it off. But not everybody took the high road in pursuit of the American dream. The seeds of organized crime bloomed amid the crowding and poverty of America’s immigrant-filled cities.
Start your journey in our lineup. You’ll be booked and hooked into our exhibits.
Organized crime branched out across America to form a national syndicate. Does your hometown have a link to the Mob?
The faces of early American mobsters were captured in lineups and headlines as they gave birth to criminal empires.
Many personality traits are shared by those who choose a life in organized crime.
“We’re bigger than U.S. Steel” –Meyer Lansky. Watch and see how the Mob was born in communities in America.
Joe Petrosino was an Italian police officer in New York who led the fight against organized crime. He was assassinated in Italy while investigating ties between the Sicilian and New York Mafia.
The seeds of organized crime bloomed amid the crowding and poverty of America’s immigrant-filled cities.
Invented in 1931, the Iron Claw is a type of handcuff used on a single wrist. This one was used by a New York City police officer.
These chips were used at illegal gambling establishments in the early 20th century. Casinos were popular in many communities and often Mob run.
Leather saps like this one were used by police officers in the early part of the 20th century to enforce the law with physical action.