Giuseppe Masseria, Italian-American Mobster

- Image ID: HRP5MA
Giuseppe Masseria, Italian-American Mobster
Science History Images / Alamy Stock Photo
Image ID: HRP5MA
Masseria, mugshot by the NYPD. Giuseppe "Joe the Boss" Masseria (January 17, 1886 - April 15, 1931) was an early Mafia Boss in New York City. He was born in 1887 in Sicily. In his early 20's he worked for local Mafia bosses. After he murdered a man he fled to America in 1903. Once in New York he began to rob shops and extort people to make a living. During prohibition he and founding member Peter Morello made their gang one of the largest and most organized criminal gangs in America. He was boss of what is now called the Genovese crime family, one of the New York Mafia's Five Families, from 1922 to 1931. In 1930 he declared war on Salvatore Maranzano and allied rivals, and some 60 gunmen and leaders on both sides were slaughtered in the resultant gang war. In 1931, he was murdered at a restaurant called Nuova Villa Tammaro in Coney Island.