Before you get to the article…
On February 23, 2018, my book on the Mau Maus and Sand Street Angels, who were two Brooklyn youth gangs from the 1950s, has been completed. It took 15 years of research and writing to complete Brooklyn Rumble: Mau Maus, Sand Street Angels, and the End of an Era. This book is roughly 6″x9″ and has 370 pages and includes a look at the characters in the Mau Maus and the details of a gang killing that happened in February 1959 in front of the iconic Brooklyn Paramount Theater (now Long Island University). If you want to buy a copy, click here and this link will take you to an online ordering page.
Interesting things can sometimes happen in the world of research and this experience I am about to share was no exception. eBay was selling a bunch of reports on juvenile delinquency in New York City from the 1950s. The thing is, these appeared to be original reports, perhaps from some City repository or official that somehow made it out into the open.
Anyhow, a friend of mine by the name of Tony Castro helped me greatly in figuring out how to purchase the reports (it’s not always easy to buy something from the United States and ship to Canada). With his assistance, the reports came in the other day and they do appear to be original reports! I’ve got lots of reading to do now. Below are photos of the reports purchased.
I would like to give a shout-out to Tony and a project he is involved with at this moment. Currently Tony is heavily involved in a film project, including meeting with screenplay writers and outside parties participating in financing the project. The film will be about Bronx gangs and in December of this year he will be doing some research in New York City including locating good film locations. In Tony’s words, here is what he is working on:
"A Cross the Street" Set in New York City (1957), this true to life story of Irma Z. Rivera, a young innocent teenager, set out to pursue her dreams of becoming a teacher, by escaping the poor poverty stricken life of El Barrio in Puerto Rico, for a better life in New York. Although, much disillusionment will follow when learning that her new East Harlem, NY neighborhood offers no hope for pursuing dreams, but rather opportunities for inclusion into the various troubled youth gangs. Due to an inability to communicate effectively in English, she becomes prey to school trouble makers, often being teased, bullied, beaten up and challenged to duals by the young tough knife welding neighborhood gang girls. Ultimately, she experiences a sense of family and protection when recruited as a "Deb" in the troubled "Diamonds" gang. Jealousy and a misunderstanding soon awaits, as her own gang members threaten her life. Losing her sense of security and gang status, she flees Manhattan to the safety of the Bronx. However, after witnessing a street fight between two rival Bronx gangs, the facts remains that gang life in the Bronx is just as prevalent as anywhere. From a jail cell to an insane asylum, her life spirals out of control when turning to drugs and to prostitution to support this heroin addiction. In the middle of all the drama and chaos she discovers that there's a Higher Power just ... A Cross the Street.
Reports on juvenile delinquency NYC 1950s