American Mobster – Owney Maddon – Head of the Gophers Street Gang

Owney "The Killer" Madden was an anomaly in the world of gangsters in New York, mainly because he was not Italian or even Jewish. Madden was British, son of an transferred Irish docker; born and raised and devoted to the life of his homeland – merry old England. In fact, although Madden was an American criminal for sixty years, he did not give up his English passport until 1950, when he was threatened with deportation.

Owen "Owney" Madden was born on Somerset Street 25 in Leeds, England, on December 18, 1891. In need, his father moved the Madden family to Liverpool. In 1903, when young Madden was only 12 years old, his father died and his mother moved his family to America, settling on the west side of Manhattan, in a treacherous district called "Hells Kitchen". Madden fell into a brutal band known as Raiders and became proficient in the privileged crimes of the era; robberies, robberies and beatings at work. Madden was skilled at using countless weapons, including a slingshot and brass knuckles, but his favorite weapon was a lead pipe wrapped in a newspaper. His main source of income was the "insurance business", in which Madden sold "bomb insurance" to dozens of local buyers who were worried about bombing their businesses, from Madden himself. As a member of the Gopher, Madden was arrested forty-four times, but he managed to jail each time.

When he was seventeen, Madden earned the nickname 'The Killer' because he shot an unarmed Italian on the street in the street for no reason, except that he could. After killing Madden, he stood over the dead body and told the crowd: "I'm Owney Madden!" When he was twenty-three, Madden had at least five other murders.

Once upon a time Madden's braggadocio almost cost him his life. On November 6, 1912, at Arbor Dance Hall, which was at the heart of territory controlled by rivals Gopher – Hudson Dusters, Madden himself entered the hall during the Dave & # 39; s Hyson Association. He watched the events from the balcony when eleven Hudson Dusters surrounded him and filled his body with six pieces of lead. He was taken to hospital, where a detective asked Madden, who shot him.

"Nothin & # 39; doin, & # 39; "said Madden. "It's not my business, it's mine that puts these snails in me. My boys will get them. " By the time Madden was released from the hospital, six of his eleven attackers had already been shot.

While Madden was recovering, one of his companions, Little Patsy Doyle, thought he might be using Madden's weakened state as a reason to take control of the gang. However, the main reason for Doyle's anger & # 39; and was that Madden stole Fredie Horner, Doyle's girlfriend & # 39; a. When news of Doyle's intentions arrived in Madden, he used Miss Horner to lure Doyle & # 39; into the salon at Eight Avenue and Forty-First Street, where Madden and his two gunners shot Doyle & # 39; a. Madden was arrested three days later and at his trial Miss Horner turned and testified against Madden. He was sentenced to Sing Sing Prison for 10-20 years, but only eight, released in 1923.

When he stepped out into the streets again, Madden discovered that his Gopher gang had dispersed, so he threw himself primarily into bootleg business. There, Madden was promoted to class and was considered equal to such gangsters as Lucky Luciano, Frank Costello, Louis Lepke, Bugsy Siegel and Meyer Lansky. Madden also dealt with nightclub activities, opening the legendary Cotton Club in Harlem, which he bought from former heavyweight champion Jack Johnson.

His relationship with Johnson led Madden to a boxing business, where he cultivated the career of an Italian carnival maniac, weighing sixty-six inches and weighing 285 pounds by Primo Canera. Madden fed Canera with so many rigidity and configurations that without Canera's talent she was able to win the world heavyweight championships. He did this by inflicting an invisible blow against champion Jack Sharkey in the 6th round at the Madison Square Garden Bowl in Long Island City. Sharkey apparently dived and reportedly received a lot of money for it. When Madden first placed Canera in a difficult situation against the Jewish heavyweight sensation Max Baer, ​​he was knocked down ten times before the judge fortunately stopped the fight in the 11th round. Of course, Madden made a lot of money by betting on Baer, ​​who, due to Canera's dreaded reputation, entered the fight as being slightly weaker.

In 1932, Madden was arrested for violating parole, and when he was released a few months later, he decided that he had accumulated enough cash throughout his life to move to Hot Springs, Arkansas. There, Madden opened several casinos / hotels that were used as hideouts for gangsters from New York, and even married Postmaster's daughter. Madden was granted US citizenship in 1943 and after being affected by emphysema, Madden died in his bed in 1965 at the age of 74. Apparently he has accumulated a fortune of $ 3 million, but it is not surprising that none of this money was ever found after his death.