After his retirement, former NYPD Homicide Bureau leader Arthur A. Carey penned an autobiographical book called, Memoirs of a Murder Man. A chapter in that book looked back at the 1903 Barrel Murder and police efforts to put the early Mafia organization of Giuseppe Morello out of business.


Carey’s account is noticeably different from the better known story told by William Flynn of the U.S. Secret Service (significant when you note that Flynn’s was published first in book and serial forms and was certainly available to Carey at the time he wrote his book). That Carey chapter, entitled “Murder While You Wait,” has been added to the website.

Barrel Mystery

About one hundred pages of The Barrel Mystery by William J. Flynn can now be accessed on the American Mafia history website.

The Barrel Mystery, published in 1919 (copyright has expired), is the story of U.S. Secret Service efforts to help solve the “barrel murder” of 1903 and to dismantle Mafia counterfeiting operations supervised by Mafia boss of bosses Giuseppe Morello and his brother-in-law Ignazio Lupo. Author Flynn was head of the New York office of the Secret Service when Morello and his men were finally brought to justice.

Portions of the book were previously published on our Caged Wolves website. It is our hope to soon have the entire book available online.


Additional pages of Joe Valachi’s autobiography, The Real Thing, are now on the website ( Click here ). Readers are cautioned that groups of pages remain unavailable to us and some of the available pages have missing portions.

Update 5 Feb 2015: About 150 full and partial pages of the Valachi manuscript are now available on the website.

Update 6 Feb 2015: About 225 full and partial pages are now available. These represent the entirety of the pages available to us at this time. As we acquire additional pages, they will be added to the website.

Update 7 Feb 2015: We are experimenting with an index to the available pages of the Valachi autobiography. 

Organized Crime in the Waste Hauling Industry report

A project begun four years ago is today significantly closer to completion. Additional chapters of the New York State Assembly report Organized Crime’s Involvement in the Waste Hauling Industry have been brought online. The report is now available through Chapter 9 and includes a large chart illustrating the complex web of connections among waste disposal companies.

The report can be accessed through this link:

[Update 13 Nov. 2014: Two additional chapters of this report are now available on the website. Remaining material still to be web-published includes a final report chapter, several appendices and some endnotes.]


We have begun the process of making the autobiographical notes of Joseph Valachi, a manuscript titled, The Real Thing, available online for the free access of those interested in the subject. The manuscript is the foundation of the 1968 Peter Maas book, The Valachi Papers. In it, Valachi recalls his early personal life, his career as a burglar in New York City, his participation in the Castellammarese War, his induction into the American Mafia and a great deal more.

To this point, The Real Thing has been out of reach for most. To our knowledge, it has never been published. The original is held in the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library in Boston. Copies can be obtained, but with the document running more than a thousand pages long, obtaining copies can be prohibitively expensive.

Our collection of The Real Thing pages is far from complete. We are hopeful that researchers who have obtained portions of the document will decide to share them.

Our thanks to crime historian Alex Hortis for his assistance in this project.


The Bibliography listing on the website has been updated. The Bibliography is comprised of more than 240 titles related (in some way) to the subject of organized crime history.

The purpose of the list is to acquaint visitors with a selection of reading material. The fact that a book is included in the list should not be interpreted as an endorsement by the website of any particular book or author. As in every field of study, published material crosses the spectrum from the scholarly and skeptical through the blandly factual, the journalistic, the superficial and the sensational, all the way to the irresponsible and the deceitful. Researchers are cautioned to consult reviews on the site and other sites before relying on information in any published work.

Items marked with an asterisk following their publication date may be of particular interest to historians, as they contain the first-person observations of participants in law enforcement, government or the underworld.

Organized Crime in the Waste Hauling Industry report

I’ve found some time to add significantly to the online presentation of a New York State report on Organized Crime in the Waste Hauling Industry. The online pages can be found through the Gov’t Sources menu selection. They can also be accessed directly using this web address:

I hope to be able to add more pages in the very near future.

The website redesign, by the way, continues … slowly.