Tong Wars

Tong Wars
Author: Scott D. Seligman
Publsiher: Penguin
Total Pages: 352
Release: 2016-07-12
Genre: History
ISBN: 9780399562297

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A mesmerizing true story of money, murder, gambling, prostitution, and opium in a "wild ramble around Chinatown in its darkest days." (The New Yorker) Nothing had worked. Not threats or negotiations, not shutting down the betting parlors or opium dens, not house-to-house searches or throwing Chinese offenders into prison. Not even executing them. The New York DA was running out of ideas and more people were dying every day as the weapons of choice evolved from hatchets and meat cleavers to pistols, automatic weapons, and even bombs. Welcome to New York City’s Chinatown in 1925. The Chinese in turn-of-the-last-century New York were mostly immigrant peasants and shopkeepers who worked as laundrymen, cigar makers, and domestics. They gravitated to lower Manhattan and lived as Chinese an existence as possible, their few diversions—gambling, opium, and prostitution—available but, sadly, illegal. It didn’t take long before one resourceful merchant saw a golden opportunity to feather his nest by positioning himself squarely between the vice dens and the police charged with shutting them down. Tong Wars is historical true crime set against the perfect landscape: Tammany-era New York City. Representatives of rival tongs (secret societies) corner the various markets of sin using admirably creative strategies. The city government was already corrupt from top to bottom, so once one tong began taxing the gambling dens and paying off the authorities, a rival, jealously eyeing its lucrative franchise, co-opted a local reformist group to help eliminate it. Pretty soon Chinese were slaughtering one another in the streets, inaugurating a succession of wars that raged for the next thirty years. Scott D. Seligman’s account roars through three decades of turmoil, with characters ranging from gangsters and drug lords to reformers and do-gooders to judges, prosecutors, cops, and pols of every stripe and color. A true story set in Prohibition-era Manhattan a generation after Gangs of New York, but fought on the very same turf.

Hatchet Men

Hatchet Men
Author: Richard H. Dillon
Publsiher: Silverstowe Book
Total Pages: 292
Release: 2012-09
Genre: Social Science
ISBN: 1618090518

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Story of a handful of well organized Chinese criminals who ruled Chinatown from the 1880's until the earthquake of 1906.

Organizing Crime in Chinatown

Organizing Crime in Chinatown
Author: Jeffrey Scott McIllwain
Publsiher: McFarland
Total Pages: 260
Release: 2014-10-01
Genre: Social Science
ISBN: 0786481277

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More than a century ago, organized criminals were intrinsically involved with the political, social, and economic life of the Chinese American community. In the face of virulent racism and substantial linguistic and cultural differences, they also integrated themselves successfully into the extensive underworlds and corrupt urban politics of the Progressive Era United States. The process of organizing crime in Chinese American communities can be attributed in part to the larger politics that created opportunities for professional criminals. For example, the illegal traffic in women, laborers, and opium was an unintended consequence of "yellow peril" laws meant to provide social control over Chinese Americans. Despite this hostile climate, Chinese professional criminals were able to form extensive multiethnic social networks and purchase protection and some semblance of entrepreneurial equality from corrupt politicians, police officers, and bureaucrats. While other Chinese Americans worked diligently to remove racist laws and regulations, Chinatown gangsters saw opportunity for profit and power at the expense of their own community. Academics, the media, and the government have claimed that Chinese organized crime is a new and emerging threat to the United States. Focusing on events and personalities, and drawing on intensive archival research in newspapers, police and court documents, district attorney papers, and municipal reports, as well as from contemporary histories and sociological treatments, this study tests that claim against the historical record.

Criminalization Assimilation

Criminalization Assimilation
Author: Philippa Gates
Publsiher: Rutgers University Press
Total Pages: 305
Release: 2019-03-08
Genre: Performing Arts
ISBN: 9780813589411

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Pt. 1. Hollywood's Chinese America -- Introduction -- Yellow peril, protest, and an orientalist gaze: Hollywood's constructions of Chinese/Americans -- Pt. 2. Chinatown crime -- Imperilled imperialism: Tong wars, slave girls, and opium dens -- The whitening of Chinatown: action cops and upstanding criminals -- Pt. 3. Chinatown melodrama -- The perils of proximity: white downfall in the Chinatown melodrama -- Tainted blood: white fears of yellow miscegenation -- Pt. 4. Chinese American assimilation -- Assimilation and tourism: Chinese American citizens and Chinatown rebranded -- Assimilating heroism: the Chinese American as American action hero -- Epilogue

The Crooked Ladder

The Crooked Ladder
Author: James M. O'Kane
Publsiher: Transaction Publishers
Total Pages: 196
Release: 1992
Genre: Social Science
ISBN: 9781412836418

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Ethnic organized crime is a phenomenon that has been largely ignored by social scientists and historians. "The Crooked Ladder" represents a groundbreaking attempt to describe how some members of ethnic minorities have utilized organized crime as one vehicle of upward mobility, advancing from lower-class status to middle-class power and respectability.

Tea That Burns

Tea That Burns
Author: Bruce Hall
Publsiher: Simon and Schuster
Total Pages: 346
Release: 1998
Genre: Biography & Autobiography
ISBN: 9780743236591

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A fourth-generation Chinese American man revisits his heritage, much of which is tied to New York's Chinatown, a place where his grandfather was a beloved bookie.

Unemployment and Crime

Unemployment and Crime
Author: United States. Congress. House. Committee on the Judiciary. Subcommittee on Crime
Publsiher: Unknown
Total Pages: 933
Release: 1978
Genre: Unemployment and crime
ISBN: PURD:32754078862103

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Chinatown Gangs

Chinatown Gangs
Author: Ko-lin Chin
Publsiher: Oxford University Press on Demand
Total Pages: 233
Release: 2000
Genre: Social Science
ISBN: 9780195136272

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In Chinatown Gangs, Ko-lin Chin penetrates a closed society and presents a rare portrait of the underworld of New York City's Chinatown. Based on first-hand accounts from gang members, gang victims, community leaders, and law enforcement authorities, this pioneering study reveals the pervasiveness, the muscle, the longevity, and the institutionalization of Chinatown gangs. Chin reveals the fear gangs instill in the Chinese community. At the same time, he shows how the economic viability of the community is sapped, and how gangs encourage lawlessness, making a mockery of law enforcement agencies. Ko-lin Chin makes clear that gang crime is inexorably linked to Chinatown's political economy and social history. He shows how gangs are formed to become "equalizers" within a social environment where individual and group conflicts, whether social, political, or economic, are unlikely to be solved in American courts. Moreover, Chin argues that Chinatown's informal economy provides yet another opportunity for street gangs to become "providers" or "protectors" of illegal services. These gangs, therefore, are the pathological manifestation of a closed community, one whose problems are not easily seen--and less easily understood--by outsiders. Chin's concrete data on gang characteristics, activities, methods of operation and violence make him uniquely qualified to propose ways to restrain gang violence, and Chinatown Gangs closes with his specific policy suggestions. It is the definitive study of gangs in an American Chinatown.