Organized crime in the 1920s

Topics: Organized crime, American Mafia, Prohibition in the United States Pages: 2 (579 words) Published: December 16, 2013

The 1920s was time of music and literature but it was also a decade of crime. This rise of illegality was not random but caused by prohibition and immigration. The advancement of guns also helped gangs progress. One of the most important figureheads of this era was Al Capone. Organized crime flourished during the 1920s in America.

The typical Italian mafia stereotype has some truth since our mafia was strongly influenced my Italy. During the mid-1800s the Sicilian mafia grew exponentially in Italy, but this quickly came to an end. At the end of the 19th century the Fascist regime of Benito Mussolini attacked the crime organizations of Italy (Mafia in the United States). Sicilian Mafiosi decided to escape to America to continue their illegal ways. In just New York in went from 20,000 in 1880 to 500,000 by 1910 (Mafia in the United States). In 1919, the 18th amendment was passed starting the Prohibition era and sparking a wave of crime. The 18th amendment also known as Prohibition banned the consumption, manufacturing, and sale of alcohol. This left a major market unclaimed with a lot of potential profit. This market also gave Sicilian Mafiosi another reason to immigrate. The mafia eventually took over the alcohol business using their skills of skilled a smuggling and bribery to get around the amendment (Mafia in the United States). The advancement of guns thanks to World War helped the mafia operate and even gave them another product to sell. Directly due to the passing of prohibition the gun market in America expanded (Prohibition). Gangs used guns to kill off rival gangs and keep hold of your territory, the most famous of which is Thompson gun. The “Tommy” gun was the first ever sub machine gun able to shoot as fast as an automatic machine gun with an rpm of 800 but used pistol ammunition (THE GUN THAT MADE THE TWENTIES ROAR). This gun was considered so violent that is was called the “Trench Broom” because a man can just stand behind cover and shoot until...

Cited: "Al Capone" FBI, 21 May 2010. Web. 12 Dec. 2013. .
"THE GUN THAT MADE THE TWENTIES ROAR" N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Dec. 2013. .
"History Files - Al Capone" N.p., n.d. Web. 11 Dec. 2013. .
"Mafia in the United States" History.com. A&E Television Networks, n.d. Web. 12 Dec. 2013. .
"Prohibition" N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Dec. 2013. .
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