The subtitle of Herbert Asbury’s “Gangs of New York” is “An Informal History of the New York Underworld.” Informal is an understatement. In fact. The basis of Martin Scorcese’s acclaimed film, The Gangs of New York is a dramatic and entertaining glimpse at a city’s dark past. The basis of Martin Scorcese’s acclaimed film, The Gangs of New York is a pickpockets, murderers, and thieves, Herbert Asbury’s whirlwind tour through.

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There are way too many great names to mention them all a This was a re-read. I only picked it up to start my A-Z list going as the author is an ‘A’.

The Gangs Of New York

Many soldiers and people were killed. As today, members of these gangs usually began their lives in a juvenile gang and grew up with no clear idea of right and wrong, moving as a natural progression into adult gangs. Also too many prepositional phrases when a asburj word would do: He touches briefly on the complex social and racial issues that influenced the gangsters’ decisions to join this dark underworld, but he’s really only paying this type of sociological examination lip service.

An Informal History of the Underworld.

In particular, it’s a collection of mostly short anecdotes, in rough chronological order running from the mid nineteenth century through the early twentieth century. The book Gangs of New York I think is a fantastic book.

Other books in the series. List of identities in The Gangs of New York book. Gallus Mag was over six feet tall and got her name by keeping her skirt up with suspenders, or galluses. Peopled variously with dead-eyed, slungshot-laden gangs such as the Bowry Boys, the Plug Uglies, the Dead Rabbits, the Shirt-tails, the True-Blue Americans; piratical river gangs like the Daybreak Boys, the Hookers, and the Patsy Conroys’; Fagin-like pickpocket crews, Chinese Tongs, ward-heelers, street-sweepers, gangsters and gamblers and rife with crimping bars, brothels, rancid tenements, raucous theaters, penny gin-mills and gaming hells, the subject matter alone make The Gangs of New York a rich find.

With the violence and corruption occurring within Cuttings gang and politics, Vallon tries to infiltrate Cuttings gang and seek revenge on his father’s death. The writing is a little more formal than what I’m generally used to; and the massive amount of material was overwhelming at times. A rogues’ gallery of prostitutes, pimps, poisoners, pickpockets, murderers, and thieves, Herbert Asbury’s whirlwind tour through the low life of nineteenth-century New York has become an indispensible classic of urban history.


Dec 19, Tracey rated it liked it Shelves: A map would have been nice, and a cast of characters even better.

This landfill became the region know as the Five Points. Thousands died and most of the police force was injured or incapacitated. This was a re-read. Fun to see how mixed up the gangs were with the polititians and labor unions. Read it Forward Read it first. Binding is tight, sturdy, and square; boards also very good. Why no Audio book? Anecdotes are piled one on top of another, with little or no explanation as to why any of them are important or how any of them are connected.

What a history is contained here. This has lots of interesting facts and tidbits about underworld Yoek York in the nineteenth and a little bit of late eighteenth and early twentieth century, but it’s a litany of disconnected names, places, and events with very little exposition to provide unifying themes or conclusions other than that everyday life was squalorous and brutal, and the officials were as corrupt as the criminals.

Argosy Book Store Published: It was another world, one that was two or three generations more remote than the Riis photos and DeNiro’s Godfather-as-a-young-man.

The Gangs of New York

Russell Books Ltd Condition: Good with rear hinge cracked, wear at the spine ends and corners, soiled, a name stamp on the front and rear pastedowns. May 05, Mara rated it did not like it Shelves: The Gangs of New York is, at the most basic, a rich, exciting, bloody and base tapestry, populated by some of the most appalling personages you can imagine.

A mediocre book, which ultimately became a mediocre film. Realistically the book culminates with the Draft Riots inwhich saw more than 2, people killed during a week-long riot that ravaged New York That’s the same number of Union forces that died at Antietam or Sharpsburg, if you are from the Southone of the bloodiest battles of the Civil War.

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. The Gangs of New York by Herbert Asbury, written inis a great read for those who love to read stories about crime and criminals that took place in New York City, dating back to the early ‘s. And then you read the same fucking thing three hundred times.

Here’s a brief taste and frankly as vivid a character sketch as you are ever likely to find in print: A fun book to peruse there is a handy index in the back or read all the way through. Herbert Asbury, an early 20th-century journalist, made a name for himself by documenting the gangs, pimps, prostitutes, and thieves that thrived in the underbellies of New York, Chicago, San Francisco, and New Orleans.


As the years went by, gangs came and went in the Five Points area. It’s a history populated by colorful characters like Sadie the Goat, a female river pirate, so-called because of her signature move of lowering her head and butting her adversary in the chest; Monk Eastman, former pet store Like its sister book Gangs of Chicago, Gangs of New York is an anecdotal history of the New York underworld in the 19th century from its nascence in the ‘s and 30’s up until the the end of Tammany Hall and the corruption that sustained gang life as a New York institution.

Ships with Tracking Number! It’s entirely possible in this case, likely that this book was considered eminently readable when it was published inbut today’s readers might find it somewhat more difficult. Light wear at edges, bumping to corners.

The Gangs of New York (book) – Wikipedia

After Amsterdam buries Bill in the same cemetery as his father. Text body is clean, and free from previous owner annotation, underlining and highlighting. As a reward for their service, Tammany Hall and their other political patrons saw to it that they were able to practice their vice, theft and mayhem with little or no interference from gang law.

Ships from Dinkytown in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The chapter on the Chinese tongs was interesting, but its accuracy can’t be assured.

Each page was the same as the next just listing different crimes and violent acts. Occasionally the text degenerates into lists of gang names, ridiculous underworld sobriquets, and catalogs of weaponry that start out fun and then glaze your eyes over, and there’s plenty of casual ‘s bigotry sprinkled throughout those sneaky, sneaky China-menbut, you know, all in good fun. For a good if heavy and lengthy history of New York, read Gotham: Pull out the brickbats, boys, and shows ’em what’s what!

Asbjry makes Biblio different?