Wednesday Oct 25, 2023

Part 1 - Meyer Lansky’s upbringing & forming friendships w Lucky Luciano and Bugsy Siegel!

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Meyer Lansky Maier Suchowljansky was born in Grodno, Russian Empire (now Belarus), to a Polish-Jewish family who experienced antisemitism and pogroms from Imperial authorities. In 1911, Lansky emigrated to the United States through the port of Odessa with his mother and brother Jacob, and joined his father, who had immigrated in 1909, and settled on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, New York. Lansky met Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel when they were children. They became lifelong friends, as well as partners in the bootlegging trade, and together managed the Bugs and Meyer Mob, with its reputation as one of the most violent Prohibition gangs. Lansky was also close friends with Charles "Lucky" Luciano; the two met as teenagers when Luciano attempted to extort Lansky for protection money on his walk home from school. Luciano respected the younger boy's defiant responses to his threats, and the two formed a lasting partnership thereafter. The two of them would go on to associate with veteran gangster Arnold Rothstein, up until his murder in 1928. Luciano had a vision to form a national crime syndicate in which the Italian, Jewish, and Irish gangs could pool their resources and turn organized crime into a lucrative business for all – an organization he founded after a conference in Atlantic City organized by himself, Lansky, Johnny Torrio, and Frank Costello in May 1929.


00:00 – Intro

09:27 – Growing up

19:43 – Benjamin “Bugsy” Siegel

34:58 – Charles “Lucky” Luciano

39:14 – Joe Masseria and the Mustache Petes

42:04 – Arnold Rothstein

44:07 – A Revolution

48:50 – Life after war

51:58 – The End

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