BN.com Gift Guide

Monk Eastman: The Gangster Who Became a War Hero

Overview

An intimate biography as well as an epic history, Monk Eastman vividly recounts the life and times of old New York’s most infamous gangster-cum-soldier as he made his way from the sooty streets and dingy saloons of the Lower East Side to the battlefields of the Western Front.

Born in 1873 to a respectable New York family, Monk was running wild in Manhattan’s rough Lower East Side by the age of eighteen. He found work as a bouncer—when the saloon owner first turned him down ...

See more details below
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (39) from $1.99   
  • New (10) from $10.04   
  • Used (29) from $1.99   
Monk Eastman: The Gangster Who Became a War Hero

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 7.0
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 10.1
  • NOOK HD Tablet
  • NOOK HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK eReaders
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$17.99
BN.com price

Overview

An intimate biography as well as an epic history, Monk Eastman vividly recounts the life and times of old New York’s most infamous gangster-cum-soldier as he made his way from the sooty streets and dingy saloons of the Lower East Side to the battlefields of the Western Front.

Born in 1873 to a respectable New York family, Monk was running wild in Manhattan’s rough Lower East Side by the age of eighteen. He found work as a bouncer—when the saloon owner first turned him down because he had two bouncers already, Monk beat them both up and was promptly hired in their place. He soon developed a loyal following of immigrant toughs, and by 1900, he was the most feared gang leader in lower Manhattan, protected by corrupt politicians and crooked cops, and commanding an army of two thousand pickpockets, thieves, prostitutes, and thugs.

But changing neighborhood demographics and shifting political fortunes colluded against Monk: after a pitched battle with Pinkerton detectives, he was sent to Sing Sing on a ten-year sentence, and his territory quickly slipped from his grasp. In 1917, no longer safe from the law—or from rival gangs—Monk joined the New York National Guard. As a gangster, he’d been the equivalent of a general; as an enlisted man, Monk was just another private.

After several months of combat training, Monk’s division of Brooklyn recruits was thrown headlong into the bitter trench warfare in Europe. His experience in gangland combat served him well: he was repeatedly cited by his superiors for his bravery and he received a hero’s welcome back in New York and an offical pardon from the governor. But Monk’s gangland past was not so easily erased and caught up with him in the end.

In Neil Hanson’s able hands, Monk’s unique and compelling story becomes an emblem of a time of upheaval—for New York and for the nation.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
This celebration of Monk Eastman (1875–1920), is brought to life by Hanson (Unknown Soldiers) in his biography of the gangster. The son of a respectable Manhattan paperhanger, Eastman set himself on a dark path as a thief, robber, and brawler among the decaying tenements of the Lower East Side, moving up to assemble a powerful criminal empire of protection rackets, gambling, and prostitution. Following the infamous battle of Rivington Street with a rival gang, Eastman locked horns with Pinkerton agents, landing in Sing Sing with a 10-year sentence. Released after five years, he found a changed New York, free of gangs and Tammany Hall. At age 43, Eastman joined the army. Most effective is the book's second part dealing with the battlefront in the deadly trenches of WWI as Eastman distinguishes himself in action, earning military honors and redemption upon his return. But in a final twist, readers learn that though Monk had left the gangs behind, the gangs hadn't left him. This is a first-rate work of a singular life. 8 pages of illus., 2 maps, and 2 illus. in text. (Oct.)
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780307266552
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 10/5/2010
  • Pages: 416
  • Sales rank: 985,263
  • Product dimensions: 6.50 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Neil Hanson’s other books include The Confident Hope of a Miracle and Unknown Soldiers. He lives in the Yorkshire Dales in England.
Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

List Of Maps

Part I

Prologue A Lot Of Little Wars 7

1 The Hall Of Tears 13

2 Blacker Than A Wolf's Throat 26

3 As A Pool Reflects The Sky 39

4 A Modern Robin Hood 50

5 The Rogues' Gallery 61

6 The Gangland Code 71

7 The Wolf Of Wall Street 82

8 The Battle Of Rivington Street 95

9 The Tombs 109

10 A Napoleon Returned From Elba 129

Part II

11 O'ryan's Roughnecks 149

12 We Only See Old Men And Boys 164

13 This Realm Of Silence 173

14 The Niagara Of Shells 184

15 More Than Brothers 195

16 The Men Must Go Forward 206

17 A Sort Of Sacrifice 214

18 The Hindenburg Line 226

19 The Phantom Division 236

20 Always Shall We Honor Them 248

Part III

21 The Fighters That They Were 265

22 Victimless Crimes 277

23 Draped In Black Cloth 286

Epilogue The Way Things Have Changed 300

Acknowledgments 305

Glossary 309

Notes 315

Bibliography 361

Index 377

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)