Monday, January 11, 2010

MAFIA

Mafia Chronology - Section I

1282
Palermo, Sicily

"Sicilian Vespers" revolution against the occupying Angevins is traditionally viewed as the birth of the Sicilian Mafia. There are no contemporary mentions of the name "Mafia," a term which comes into being hundreds of years later, but the underground movement against Anjou may be seen as the ancestor of a later Mafia.

1792


New York, US

Coulter's Brewery is erected at the Five Points intersection of New York's Lower East Side, facing Paradise Square. The Brewery in later years and in a later incarnation as a broken-down tenement would become the centerpiece of New York's most impoverished and criminally active neighborhood.

1805


Genoa, Italy
Giuseppe Mazzini
Birth

1834


New Orleans, US
Joseph P. Macheca
Birth. (according to one source, his name was originally Peter Carvanna).

1837


New York, US

Coulter's Brewery on the Lower East Side becomes a tenement house. In the decades to come, it would become known as the "Old Brewery" and be inhabited by the poorest of the New York City's immigrant poor. It would be the site of numerous gang battles, murders and assorted crimes.

c.1845


New Orleans, US
Joseph P. Macheca
Macheca's father was sent off for a long prison stay and urged his wife Marietta to remarry. She married Giuseppe Mercieca (Joseph Macheca), who was originally from Malta and had established a fruit selling business in New Orleans. Young Peter Carvanna's name became Joseph Peter Macheca. Joseph Macheca Sr. later had two other sons with his wife Marietta.

1854


Corleone, Sicily
Antonio Morello
Approximate date of birth in some older sources for the most senior of the Morello-Terranova brothers. While a New York immigrant named Antonio Morello did earn a criminal reputation around the turn of the 20th Century, it now appears that he was not related to the Morello-Terranova family.

1857


Monreale, Sicily
Charles Matranga
Birth

1858


New Orleans, US
Charles Matranga
Family moves from Sicily.

1859


Palermo, Sicily
Giuseppe Mazzini
Revolutionary and former member of Neapolitan Camorra, Mazzini seems to have united Palermo opponents of Bourbon rule within a "Mafia" underground organization built along the lines of the Camorra.


1860
Jan

New Orleans, US
Raffaele Agnello
Palermo Mafioso Agnello arrives in New Orleans. His brother Joseph is already settled in the city.

1860
Apr
3
Palermo, Sicily
Giuseppe Mazzini
Supporting Mazzini's Republican movement, Mafia overthrows Bourbon authority in Palermo.

1861


Palermo, Sicily

Mafia appears to begin incorporating the groups of bandits in the Sicilian hills.

U.S. Civil War begins with Confederate attack on Fort Sumter - April 12, 1861.
1861


Texas, US
Joseph Macheca
Macheca becomes rich running Union blockades during the Civil War.

1862


Bisacquino, Sicily
Vito Cascio Ferro
Birth

1863


Sicily

The term "Mafia" becomes more widely known after a play about heroic Palermo jail inmates is produced.

Confederacy surrenders, ending Civil War - April 9, 1865.
President Lincoln assassinated in Washington, DC - April 14, 1865
1865


New Orleans, US
Joseph Macheca
Wealthy Macheca returns to Louisiana, sets up steamship trading company, involves himself in local Democratic politics. Begins to organize the "Innocents" gang of Sicilian immigrants.

1867
May
2
Corleone, Sicily
Giuseppe Morello
Birth. (a.k.a. Peter, "The Clutch Hand.") Giuseppe Morello appears to have been the oldest of the Morello-Terranova brothers. He was half-brother to Nicholas Morello(Terranova) and Ciro and Vincent Terranova. A number of sources incorrectly place Giuseppe Morello's birth in either 1863 or 1870.

1867


Sicily
Rosario Meli Meli, 22, possibly a key player in the youth-oriented early Mafia, is convicted of murders. He escapes from police.

1868
Oct

New Orleans, US
Joseph Macheca
Macheca's "Innocents" gang gets its first notice from authorities and media during the Presidential election season. The gang conducts violent raids against Republican African-Americans in the French Quarter.

1868
Oct
28
New Orleans, US
Joseph Macheca
Raffaele Agnello,
Litero Barba
On his way home from a meeting of Macheca's Innocents gang at the Orleans Ballroom, Litero Barba is shot to death at the corner of St. Philip and Chartres Streets. Barba is a leader of the local Messina colony. While the killing was first attributed to African Americans, Mafia leader Raffaele Agnello was later deemed responsible.

1868


New Orleans, US
Rosario Meli,
Raffaele Agnello,
Joseph Macheca
Meli turns up in New Orleans as a subordinate to Raffaelo Agnello, who is challenging the rule of the indigenous mob of Joseph Macheca.

1868
Dec

New Orleans, US
Raffaele Agnello,
Joseph Agnello, brother of Mafia boss Raffaele Agnello, hosts a party at his Royal Street residence to bring together the competing factions in the local Sicilian underworld. The gathering turns violent. Agnello lieutenant Alphonse Mateo is shot in the face at close range. Messinian faction boss Joseph Banano is shot in the back. Both men survive.

1869
Feb
15
New Orleans, US
Raffaelo Agnello,
Agnello sends his brother Joseph and several other members of his organization to attack the Messinian gang bosses at home. The group bursts into a Chartres Street residence, opening fire with shotguns. Messinian leaders Joseph Banano, Giovanni Casabianca, Pedro Allucho and two other men managed to escape with only minor injuries.

1869
April
1
New Orleans, US
Raffaele Agnello,
Joseph Macheca
Assassin Joseph Florada ambushes and kills Agnello in front of the Macheca produce store on Toulouse Street. He shoots Agnello in the face at close range with a blunderbuss pistol. Agnello bodyguard Frank Sacarro pursues and shoots at the Florada. Florada escapes through a nearby bakery.

1869
July
22
New Orleans, US
Raffaelo Agnello
Agnello's death is avenged as his brother Joseph and Salvador Rosa murder Messinian leaders Joseph Banano and Pedro Allucho near the French Market.

1869


New Orleans, US
Joseph Macheca,
Raffaelo Agnello
Macheca's gang puts down the remnants of the Agnello challenge. Macheca helps to establish the Matranga family as the leaders of the local Sicilian underworld.

American East and West are joined by railroad - 1869
1870


Monreale, Sicily

The Stuppagghieri criminal group comes to light in Monreale. It competes with old-line Mafia there.

1871


Italy
Jim Colosimo
Birth. (a.k.a. "Big Jim".)

1871



Giuseppe Mazzini
Death - about 66 years old.

1872
Apr
20
New Orleans, US
Raffaelo Agnello
Agnello's brother Joseph is shot to death at the Picayune Pier. His killers are Joseph Maressa, Joseph Florada and two other men.

1872


Chicago, US
Jim Colosimo
Arrives in Chicago.

1874


Sicily
Antonino Leone,
Giuseppe Esposito
Mafia gains international attention as leader Leone and his lieutenant, Giuseppe Esposito, kidnap English banker and demand ransom. Payments are slow. Leone reportedly mails first one ear, then the other, and then a portion of the victim's nose to his family. Reports of the mutilation appear to have been greatly exaggerated.

1875


Sicily
Antonino Leone,
Giuseppe Esposito
Under pressure from the English government, the Italian army moves against Leone. Enduring significant losses, the army encircles Leone's band in the hills and captures the leader as well as Esposito. Leone is sentenced to life in prison (serves only a few years before escaping to North Africa), but Esposito escapes from police and returns to lead the Sicilian Mafia.

1875


San Francisco, US
Rosario Meli
Meli and some followers move from New Orleans to San Francisco in the hopes of establishing themselves as leaders of a Mafia group there.

Telephones first exhibited - 1876.
1877
Mar
19
Corleone, Sicily
Ignazio Lupo
Birth. (a.k.a. Ignazio Saietta, "Lupo the Wolf.")

1877


Sicily
Calogero Vizzini
Birth. (Known to Mafiosi as "Zu Calo" or Uncle Calo.)

1878
Sep
29
New Orleans, US
Salvatore Marino
Leader of the rebel Mafia movement known as Stuppagghieri (Stoppaglieri) dies after a bout with Yellow Fever.

1878
Nov

New York, US
Giuseppe Esposito
With authorities on his trail, Espositio decides to flee to U.S. Sails to New York via Marseilles, France. Notes that New York underworld is dominated by Irish gangs with some smaller, inconspicuous Italian/Sicilian gangs. Possibly gets to work organizing the Mafia in New York.

1878


San Francisco, US
Rosario Meli
Meli and several associates are accused of murder. An underling confesses to the killing and insists it was a matter of honor. No prosecution in the case. Group then charged, convicted and jailed for robbery.

1879


Italy
Antonino Leone
The legendary brigand leader Leone reportedly escapes from prison, disappears in North Africa.

1879


New York, US
Joe Petrosino
Future super-cop arrives in New York City.

1879
Spring

New Orleans, US
Giuseppe Esposito,
Joseph Macheca
Looking for greener pastures, Esposito and some associates relocate from New York to New Orleans. Finds Macheca agreeable to sharing underworld leadership. Esposito renames himself Vincenzo Rebello.

1879
Oct

New Orleans, US
Giuseppe Esposito (a.k.a. Vincenzo Rebello)
Esposito marries Sarah Castagno. News travels back to Sicily, where Esposito left a wife and children.


1880


New Orleans, US
Giuseppe Provenzano
Esposito lieutenant Provenzano controls work on New Orleans docks.

1880


New Orleans, US
David Hennessey
Hennessey, who works in the New Orleans police force along with his cousin Mike, first becomes aware of a Mafia presence in his town.

1880
Sept.
8
San Francisco, US
Rosario Meli
American officials seek to deport Meli. He is moved to New York and reportedly boarded ship for Sicily. However, he seems never to have arrived at his destination.

1881
Jul
5
New Orleans, US
Giuseppe Esposito
Tony Labruzzo
David Hennessey
Learning of his Sicilian Mafia connections through his Sicilian wife and an informer, Tony Labruzzo, Hennessey nabs Esposito and turns him over to be deported. Esposito returns to New York City on July 13 for an extradition hearing.

1881
Jul
13
New York, US
Giuseppe Esposito
Esposito insists he is Vincenzo Rebello and has been wrongly identified. He cannot be deported until authorities can prove his identity through photos and witnesses. New York Sicilian community mobilizes to assist him.

1881
Sep
21
New York, US
Giuseppe Esposito
His identity proved, Esposito is deported, faces murder charges in Italy. Internal struggles erupt within Mafia organizations in New Orleans and New York as Mafiosi seek to determine who has betrayed Esposito.

1881


Rome, Italy
Giuseppe Esposito
Convicted of murders, Esposito is jailed for life.

Electric lights make their debut in lower Manhattan - 1882
1882


New Orleans, US
Giuseppe Provenzano,
Joseph Macheca,
Charles Matranga,
David Hennessey
Two factions emerge in New Orleans after Esposito's arrest. Provenzano's group, comprised of more traditional mafiosi with ties to Palermo leadership, are angered that Macheca did not use his political influence to save Esposito. The Macheca-Matranga faction includes home-grown criminals. Macheca is able to use political muscle to have Hennessey brothers dismissed from police force.

1882


New York. US
Arnold Rothstein
Birth.

1882


Naples, Italy
Johnny Torrio
Birth. (a.k.a. "Terrible John.")

1883


Sicily
Vito Cascio Ferro
Assault is reportedly first official charge to go on Cascio Ferro's police record.

1883


New York, US
Joe Petrosino
Joins New York police force.

1884


New York, US
Johnny Torrio
Taken to live in New York by his recently widowed mother.

1884
Apr.
5
Staten Island, New York, US
Antonio Flaccomio,
Camillo Farach Farach's dead body is found in a field on Staten Island. His business partner (cigar store at 103 Degraw Street in Brooklyn), Antonio Flaccomio, is primary suspect. Police believe the two dueled with sword canes over a financial disagreement. Coroner's jury eventually decides that Farach's death is the result of a suicide, though he was stabbed both in his chest and his back.

1886
May
18
Corleone, Sicily
Vincent Terranova
Birth.

1886


Sicily
Giuseppe Masseria
Birth. (a.k.a. "Joe the Boss.")

1886


Castellamare del Golfo, Sicily
Salvatore Maranzano
Birth. (a.k.a. "Don Turridru.")

1886
July

New York, US
Antonio Flaccomio,
John Farach Flaccomio, in hiding in Buffalo, Chicago, Louisville and New Orleans since 1884, resurfaces in New York City. He appears before John Farach, brother of Camillo Farach, admits responsibility for Camillo's death and asks to be allowed to return to live in the city. Farach tells him to stay out of Brooklyn or he will be killed.

1887
Apr.
14
New York, US
Antonio Flaccomio
A friend leads Flaccomio to a dark spot at Manhattan's Jersey Street, near Crosby Street, and attacks him. Flaccomio is prepared for the betrayal and shoots his assailant in the wrist. The two men flee. Flaccomio runs a grocery nearby at 607 Third Avenue. He has apparently been condemned to death by regional Mafia leaders who believe he violated underworld codes by taking Camillo Farach's life in 1884 and by aiding a government investigation into Sicilian counterfeiting rings.

1887
Jun
6

Cesare LaMare
Birth.

1888


New Orleans, US
David Hennessey
A wave of reform sweeps through New Orleans and leads to Hennessey rejoining the police force as its chief.

1888


New Orleans, US
Rocco Geraci
Geraci is identified as top enforcer for the Macheca-Matranga group.

1888


New Orleans, US
Joseph Macheca,
Charles Matranga,
Giuseppe Provenzano
Authorities believe Macheca-Matranga organization has imported 320 members of the Stoppaglieri group from Sicily. Macheca-Matranga is preparing for all-out war against Provenzano's Mafia and begins challenging Provenzano's monopoly on the docks.

1888
July
20
Corleone, Sicily
Ciro Terranova
Birth. (a.k.a. Ciro Morello, "The Artichoke King," "The Boss," and in at least one reference "Whitey.")

1888
Oct.
14
New York, US
Carlo & Vincenzo Quarteraro,
Antonio Flaccomio
Flaccomio stabbed to death in the first recognized Mafia murder in New York. Brothers Carlo and Vincent Quarteraro are accused of the crime, which occurred in front of the Cooper Union building at Eighth Street and Third Avenue, not far from Flaccomio's grocery. Flaccomio was drinking and gambling with acquaintances at La Trinicria restaurant at Manhattan's St. Mark's Place, owned by Giuseppe Canizzaro and Natale Sabatino. An argument erupted. Sabatino and Francesco Aita escorted Flaccomio out of the restaurant and down the street. Carlo and Vincenzo Quarteraro charged after Flaccomio with knives. Carlo stabbed Flaccomio to death. Police decided that the killing was the result of a vendetta linked to the betrayal of Sicilian counterfeiting rings and to the murder of Camillo Farach.

1888
Oct.
22
New York, US
Carlo & Vincenzo Quarteraro,
Antonio Flaccomio
Carlo Quarteraro, believed to be the actual murderer of Flaccomio, has fled the country. His brother Vincenzo turns himself in to police, believing he is wanted merely as a material witness. Vincenzo is charged with murder. NYPD Inspector Byrnes announces to the press that the Palermo, Sicily, Mafia has branches in the United States, headquartered in New York City and New Orleans.

1889
Jan.
24
New Orleans, US
Giuseppe Provenzano,
Vincenzo Ottumvo,
Joseph Macheca,
Charles Matranga,
David Hennessey
According to Chandler, Provenzano attempts to negotiate a peace treaty with Macheca-Matranga, but his emissary, Vincenzo Ottumvo, is axed to death. (Note: This story is at odds with police records.) Hennessey attempts to intervene in the erupting conflict. Calls a conference and arranges truce but appears to be siding with Provenzano.

1889
Feb
11

Joseph Bruno Dovi
Birth

1889
Apr.

New York, US
Carlo & Vincenzo Quarteraro,
Antonio Flaccomio Vincenzo Quarteraro is acquitted of the Flaccomio murder. Disgusted police detective remarks that Italians in New York can go ahead and "kill each other."

1889


Palermo, Sicily
Ignazio Lupo
Lupo, just 12 years old, is believed to have murdered a man named Salvatore Morello (apparently unrelated to the Giuseppe Morello family). Flees to New York to escape prosecution.


1890
Jan
6
Corleone, Sicily
Nicholas Morello
Birth

1890
Apr
6
New Orleans, US
Giuseppe Provenzano,
Joseph Macheca,
Charles Matranga,
Provenzano forces ambush some Macheca-Matranga men at Claiborne and Esplanade Streets, killing two. Key Provenzano figures are arrested. Despite "underworld code," Macheca-Matranga gang provides information on the crime to police.

1890
May
1
New Orleans, US
Giuseppe Provenzano,
Joseph Macheca,
Charles Matranga
Open warfare begins between rival underworld factions.

1890
July

New Orleans, US
Giuseppe Provenzano
Provenzano defendants are convicted of the killings, but judge throws out the verdict and orders a new trial.

1890
Summer

New Orleans, US
David Hennessey
Police chief prepares to testify on behalf of the Provenzano group in second ambush trial Oct. 17 and to expose the Macheca-Matranga mob.

1890
Oct
15
New Orleans, US
David Hennessey,
Joseph Macheca,
Charles Matranga
Hennessey is ambushed near corner of Girod and Basin Streets at about 11:30 p.m. He was on his way home to 275 Girod Street. Boy walks ahead of him along the street and whistles a signal. Gunmen emerge and kill the police chief.Macheca-Matranga leadership is hauled in and charged with the assassination.

1890
Jan
1
Dedham, MA, US
Giuseppe DeLucca
Giacchino Cocchiara
DeLucca convicted of Nov. 21 killing of Edward Cunningham. State witness Cocchiara is marked for death.

1891
Mar
11
New Orleans, US
Joseph Macheca,
Charles Matranga
Jury finds Macheca-Matranga defendants not guilty. Jury tampering is evident. The group remains in custody.

1891
Mar
14
New Orleans, US
Joseph Macheca,
Charles Matranga
Angry mob asembles, enters the jail and murders most of the defendants. Macheca is among those killed. Charles Matranga manages to survive the incident and later becomes recognized head of New Orleans underworld.

1891


Cosenza Province, Italy
Francesco Castiglia
Birth of Frank Costello. His birthplace is usually said to be the village of Lauropoli. But Selvaggi names the town of Cassano Jonio.

1891


Castellamare del Golfo, Sicily
Salvatore Sabella
Birth.

1891


Corleone, Sicily
Jack Dragna
Birth.

1891
Aug
26
Brooklyn, US
Robert Castellano
Brooklyn police investigate threats against cigar store owner Castellano, speculate that a branch of Mafia is responsible.

1891
Oct
10
Castellamare del Golfo, Sicily
Stefano Magaddino
Birth.

1892


New Orleans, US
Giuseppe Provenzano,
Charles Matranga
Provenzano family flees New Orleans as Matranga organization absorbs the remainder of the Provenzano mob. Matranga is supreme Mafia boss in the city.

1892
Dec
4
Brooklyn, US
Antonio Morello,
Francesco Meli Antonio Morello allegedly kills Neapolitan Francesco Meli of Brooklyn. Incident may represent a struggle over control of the Brooklyn docks. Morellos establish control bases in Brooklyn and upper Manhattan/Bronx. Lower Manhattan appears to be left alone (still dominated by Irish. Jewish gangs).

1893
Mar
8
New York, US
Nicholas Morello,
Giuseppe Morello,
Ciro Terranova,
Vincent Terranova
Morello-Terranova family moves from Sicily to New York, affiliates itself with Sicilian mobster Ignazio Lupo.

1893


Sicily
Raffaele Palizzolo
Palizzolo is believed to have murdered Baron Emanuele Notarbartolo, who died after 16 knife wounds.

1894
Jan
9
Boston, US
Pasquale Sacco
Police speculate that a branch of the Mafia or the Camorra is behind the brutal razor slaying of Sacco.

1894
Mar
8
Providence, RI, US
Dante Regali,
Augusto Ferrari,
John Caproni
Regali and Ferrari stand trial for robbing and beating local banker Caproni.

1895
Jan
1
Washington, DC, US
John Edgar Hoover
Birth.

1895
Jan
27
New Orleans, US
Police Chief Dexter Gaster
Gaster reports that the local Mafia - thought extinct after 1891 lynchings - is once again active.

1895
May
25
Danville, IL, US

Mob lynches two alleged leaders of a criminal gang. Danville authorities warn local gangsters to leave town.

1895
Jun
21
Boston, US
Gioacchino Cocchiara,
Giuseppe DeLucca,
Antonio Caro Armblissa
Fearful that his friend Armblissa is conspiring with imprisoned DeLucca on a vendetta, barber Cocchiara shoots Armblissa twice.

1895


Chicago, US

1895 is generally regarded as the official start date for the Unione Siciliana in Chicago. The Unione became a national brotherhood providing support for Sicilian immigrants but was later contaminated by Mafiosi and turned into a criminal network. An earlier start date for the organization (or, perhaps, an earlier parent group) appears likely.

1895


Brooklyn, US
Giuseppe Balsamo
(a.k.a. "Battista Balsamo") Arrives in New York. Was an established Sicilian Mafioso. One source claims erroneously that he was the first American "Godfather." His authority was likely confined to a region of Brooklyn.

1895


New York, US
Francesco Castiglia
Frank Costello arrives in New York. Family settles into apartment on East 108th Street and begins operating a small grocery.

1895
July
4
Waterbury, CT, US
Antonio Spadola
Local Mafioso Spadola is implicated in the shooting of Nicolo Errico.

1895
Sep
11
Waterbury, CT, US
Antonio Spadola
Newspapers report that Patrolman Charles Fiore, expected to testify in the Spadola trial, has been threatened by members of the local Italian community.

1896


Sicily
Sam Carolla
Birth (orig. Sylvestro Carolla)

1897
Feb
6
New York, US
Louis Buchalter
Birth. (a.k.a. "Lepke.")

1897
Feb
20

Nicolo Licata
Birth.

1897


New York. US

Legend: Patriarch of Morello-Terranova clan is gunned down after a night of gambling.

1897
Oct.
2
Palermo, Sicily
Joe Profaci
Birth.

1897
Nov
14
Naples, Italy
Paul Ricca
Birth. (a.k.a. Paul DeLucia.)

1897
Nov
21
Risigliano, Italy
Vito Genovese
Birth. (a.k.a. Don Vitone.)

1897
Nov
24
Lecara Friddi, Sicily
Salvatore Lucania
Birth. (a.k.a. Charlie Luciano, "Charlie Lucky," Charles Ross.)

Spanish-American War - April 20, 1898, to Dec. 10, 1898.
1898
Jun
13
Springfield, MA, US
Natale Giuliano
Giuliano is charged with the shooting death of his in-law Pietro Fazzio on a busy street in broad daylight. Witnesses against Giuliano become suddenly forgetful.

1898


New York, US
Antonio Morello
Shot down. Possibly 44 years old. Despite published claims, this Morello was apparently not related to the Morello-Terranova underworld clan.

1899


New York. US
Charles Ubriaco
Arrives in New York and sets to work for Lupo-Morello group.

1899


Brooklyn, US
Alphonse Capone
Birth. (a.k.a. "Snorky," "Scarface")

1899
Dec
1
Palermo, Sicily
Gaetano Lucchese
Birth. (a.k.a. Tommy Lucchese, Luckese, "Three-Finger Brown.")

Buzzflash News

counter