|On April 2, 1869, the New Orleans |
Crescent reflected upon the causes
of local Sicilian gang violence.
Barba is reputed to be a leader of a New Orleans criminal organization with its roots in Messina, Sicily. African-American political organizers in the Crescent City are initially believed responsible for the killing (the Innocenti, aligned with the city Democratic political machine, have conducted a series of violent raids upon Reconstruction Era African-American Republican groups).
However, blame ultimately falls upon local Palermo-born Mafia boss Raffaele Agnello. The New Orleans Sicilian-American underworld fractures, as an alliance of Messinesi and Trapanesi opposes the Agnello Mafia.
Read more about these events in Deep Water: Joseph P. Macheca and the Birth of the American Mafia by Thomas Hunt and Martha Macheca Sheldon.
- Thomas Hunt