Item description for Black Brothers, Inc. : The Violent Rise and Fall of Philadelphia's Black Mafia by Sean Patrick Griffin, Gildart Jackson, Benjamin Maldonado Alvarado, Joe Giella & Bivas Mitra...
Updated Edition, October 2007
"A gripping story. . . . Griffin richly documents the Black Mafia's organization, outreach and over-the-top badness."---Philadelphia Inquirer
"Griffin's reporting on the Black Mafia and its interaction with law enforcement, the Nation of Islam and the Italian mob is fascinating."---Philadelphia Weekly
"A confident chronicle of Philly's Black Mafia, the decades-long collaboration among drug dealers, Muslim clerics and local politicians."---Philadelphia Magazine
"A richly detailed narrative of the murderous history of the city's first African-American crime syndicate."---Philadelphia Daily News
"A great, sprawling epic."---Duane Swierczynski, editor-in-chief, Philadelphia City Paper
"If you're a crime buff, a history lover, or if you just want something fascinating to read, it's a book you can't refuse."---Terri Schlichenmeyer, syndicated reviewer and host of www.BookWormSez.com
"I couldn't put this book down."---Keith Murphy, award-winning broadcaster and host of "The Urban Journal" on XM Radio's The Power
"Sean Patrick Griffin has given us a really extensive look into the Black Mafia . . . and has produced one of best pieces of research on the underworld . . . that I have ever seen."---Elmer Smith, "The Exchange," 1340AM WHAT
"The book is incredible . . . amazing stuff."---Dom Giordano, radio host, 1210AM WPHT
"Sean Patrick Griffin, in surreal detail, lays out the twist and turns, the political and religious associations . . . a guaranteed chilling read."---The Melting Pot
"Searing, unrelenting and ruthlessly precise, a nose-in-the-bloodstains account of the violence that splattered black Philadelphia in the late 60s and early 70s."---Henry Schipper, producer of "Philly Black Mafia" in the "American Gangster" TV series
The Black Mafia is one of the bloodiest crime syndicates in modern US history. From its roots in Philadelphia's ghettos in the 1960's, it grew from a rabble of street toughs to a disciplined, ruthless organization based on fear and intimidation. Known in its "legitimate" guise as Black Brothers Inc, it held regular meetings, appointed investigators, treasurers and enforcers, and controlled drug dealing, loan-sharking, numbers rackets, armed robbery and extortion.
Its ferocious crew of gunmen was led by Sam Christian, the most feared man on Philly's streets. They developed close ties with the influential Nation of Islam and soon were executing rivals, extorting bookies connected to the city's powerful Cosa Nostra crew, and cowing local gangs. Police say the Black Mafia was responsible for over forty killings, the most chilling being the massacre of two adults and five children in a feud between rival religious factions. Despite the arrests that followed, they continued their rampage, exploiting their ties to prominent lawyers and civil rights leaders. Convictions and sentences eventually shattered their strength---only for the crack-dealing Junior Black Mafia to emerge in their wake.
Author Sean Griffin, a former Philadelphia police officer turned university professor, conducted scores of interviews and gained access to informant logs, witness statements, wiretaps and secret FBI files to make Black Brothers Inc. the most detailed account ever of an African American organized crime mob, and a landmark investigation into the modern urban underworld.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 1.25" Width: 5" Height: 7.75" Weight: 1.24 lbs.
Release Date Jul 5, 2005
Publisher Milo Books
ISBN 1903854369 ISBN13 9781903854365
Availability 0 units.
More About Sean Patrick Griffin, Gildart Jackson, Benjamin Maldonado Alvarado, Joe Giella & Bivas Mitra
Sean Patrick Griffin, Ph.D. is a former Philadelphia police officer who is now associate professor in the Administration of Justice at Penn State Abington. He has authored numerous articles on organized and white-collar crime and been an invited panelist on national crime forums.
Reviews - What do customers think about Black Brothers, Inc. : The Violent Rise and Fall of Philadelphia's Black Mafia?
Native Philadelphian Jun 24, 2008
A great book. Its very detailed and the author really connects the dots. Sometimes I went to sleep afraid at the memory of the horrific crimes and the terrible legacy created by the Black Mafia. May it never happen again.
I'VE READ IT FOUR TIMES..COULDN'T PUT IT DOWN !! Mar 11, 2008
I SAW THE AD ON T.V. BEFORE THE BOOK CAME OUT AND MY WIFE BOUGHT IT FOR ME AFTER I EXPRESSED INTEREST IN IT . I OWNED A LARGE POOL ROOM IN WEST PHILA. AND I WAS A ''REGULAR'' ON 52ND ST, SO I SAW A LOT OF THESE PEOPLE ON ALMOST A DAILY BASIS !! IN FACT, I PULLED UP ABOUT 10 MINUTES AFTER FOO-FOO REGAN HAD GOTTEN SHOT. I CAN STILL SMELL THE AROMA OF THOSE ''MAMMA JAMMAS'' HE SOLD . I ALSO REMEMBER THE NIGHT DENNIS SWIFT GOT SHOT ON 52ND ST. AS STATED IN THE BOOK, DENNIS WAS THE ALLEGED SHOOTER OF FOO-FOO. I HAD THE DISTINCTION OF COMING UP RIGHT AFTER DENNIS WAS SHOT ALSO !! MY TIMING WAS ''OFF' BY 10 MINUTES IN BOTH CASES!! I REMEMBER 98 PCT. OF THE INCIDENTS IN BLACK BROS. AND READING ABOUT THOSE THINGS AND THE PEOPLE INVOLVED BRINGS BACK SO MANY MEMORIES.
I REMEMBER THE DAY I HAD TO ASK RONALD HARVEY TO PLEASE NOT COME INTO THE POOL ROOM ANYMORE . THAT WAS ONE OF THE SCARIEST MOMENTS IN MY LIFE !! BUT HE KNEW I WASN'T TRYING TO BE A ''TOUGH GUY'' AND HE SAID HE UNDERSTOOD THAT I HAD A BUSINESS TO RUN AND THERE WAS NO PROBLEM !!
SO MANY MEMORIES !! I HAVE BOUGHT THE BOOK FOUR TIMES AND LENT IT OUT EACH TIME AND NEVER GOT ANY OF THEM BACK . I WILL BUY IT AGAIN AND READ IT AGAIN FOR ALTHOUGH THERE IS SO MUCH VIOLENCE, THOSE DAYS WERE SOME OF THE MOST FUN DAYS AND NIGHTS OF MY LIFE !! I ESPECIALLY REMEMBER THE TIMES ON 52ND ST. WHEN ''COUPE DEVILLES'', A CLUB, WAS OPEN . WE SAW SO MANY CELEBRITIES THERE AND I CAN STILL SMELL THE STEAKS AND HOAGIES AND THE OTHER SMELLS ASSOCIATED WITH ''THE STRIP''.
I CAN'T GET ENOUGH OF THIS BOOK AND EVERYONE WHO I HAVE TURNED ON TO IT SAYS THE SAME THING !!
I HAVE TO COMMENT ON THE SADDEST PART OF THE BOOK AND THAT IS WHEN I THUMB THRU IT , I KEEP SEEING THAT LARGE PICTURE OF ''TANK''/LARRIS FRAZIER !! HE WAS A VERY GOOD FRIEND OF MINE AND IT HURTS TO SEE HIS PICTURE STARING OUT AT ME AND KNOWING HE WILL NEVER BE A FREE MAN AGAIN !!
Majority true but........ Jan 5, 2008
The book made me clearly understand a lot of the going ons during that time because I was young. Growing up in the sections of the city of Philly and ,especially the South Philly side of the action, most of the storied account is true. The book made me relive the 70's all over again. Most people didn't know of the Black Mafia because it was to be a secret amonst us South Phillyains. Most of the guys that mentioned in the book were nice and respectable guys though they did their thing.(unlike these so call gangsters of today,when they reached their target they didn't miss and hit innocent people)). What book failed to mention is the dealing and payoffs within the police departments. Overall a good incite to what was going on back then !!!
Not worth the trouble Mar 10, 2007
i could not get through this book . It seemed to go back in forth in time with random stories of violence with so many differant characters , it was hard to keep up with who was doing what .
Philadelphia's Black Sopranos Feb 4, 2007
Gun violence has become so commonplace in today's Philadelphia that it is difficult to remember the days when homicide once shocked us. "Black Brothers, Inc." takes us back to those days, when gangsters presented themselves as community leaders, killing was the exception--not the norm, and murder was purposeful.
In a story as gripping as "The Sopranos," "Black Brothers, Inc." charts the rise of Philadelphia's Black mafia in the 1960s and its ultimate downfall. These brothers were excellent businessmen, holding regular meetings and carefully negotiating mergers and acquisitions of rival syndicates. They were also ruthless, killing with impunity anyone who might testify in court against them.
This book is a fun read, as Sean Patrick Griffin writes tautly and keeps the story moving. He is also adept at linking all sorts of unlikely bedfellows; he painstakingly documents the ties between the Black mafia and Philadelphia's Temple 12 in the Nation of Islam.
Unfortunately, Griffin's conspiracy theories occasionally get out of hand, and he often implies that all African-Americans involved in politics or business are somehow connected with the criminal elements. What Griffin apparently fails to realize is that Philadelphia is a small town, the black community is a small community, and in the end, only a few degrees separate any two individuals. The notion that all black success in Philadelphia is due to organized crime--or even the more prosaic corruption that regularly surfaces in the City Hall--is simply racism.
For its insights into crime, the book is a good buy; for its analysis of the City's political culture, go elsewhere.