Harlem Godfather: The Rap on My Husband, Ellsworth Bumpy Johnson by Mayme JohnsonThe first and only full biography on legendary Harlem gangster, Bumpy Johnson who was depicted in the movies Cotton Club, Hoodlum and American Gangster Al Capone may have ruled Chicago. Lucky Luciano may have run most of New York City. But from the 1930s to the late 1960s, when it came to Harlem, the undisputed king of the underworld was Ellsworth Bumpy Johnson. Bumpy was a man whose contradictions are still the root of many an argument in Harlem. But there is one thing on which both his supporters and detractors agree in his lifetime, Bumpy was the man in Harlem. Harlem Godfather: The Rap on My Husband, Ellsworth Bumpy Johnson is the first complete biography of a man who for years was Harlem s best kept, and most cherished secret. There is also a full chapter on Madame Stephanie St . Clair, the infamous Harlem numbers banker who instigated the famous fight with Jewish mobster Dutch Schultz. The book is written by Bumpys widow, Mayme Johnson, and details not only his criminal life but also his personal life. This book also details Bumpys relationship Harlem dopedealer with Frank Lucas, who has called himself Bumpys right-hand man, but was -- according to Mrs. Johnson -- little more than a flunky.
BUMPY JOHNSON SAVED LUCKY LUCIANOS LIFE IN SING SING-- ALLAH B, BRONALD & BROTHER HENRY
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Stephanie St. Clair carved out a piece of the New York rackets during the early years of the 20th century, battling mobsters such as Dutch Schultz and Lucky Luciano , as well as corrupt and honest police, for control of gambling in Harlem. According to biographer Shirley Stewart, who wrote the definitive history of St. Clair, she was born in the French east Caribbean island of Guadeloupe in and traveled to the United States on a steamer in when she was 13 years old. Other biographies echo the manifest of the S. Guiana, aboard which St.
I n the opening scene of Ridley Scott's mesmerising American Gangster, the underworld legend Ellsworth "Bumpy" Johnson dies in the company of his protege Frank Lucas, lamenting the disappearance of the Harlem he once knew. While the scene takes place in an appliance store, and Johnson, by most accounts, died in Lucas's arms in a nightclub, the scene establishes the strong bond of affection between the godfather of uptown crime and his surrogate son - a son who would revolutionise the New York heroin trade. I've taught you everything you need to know about this racket, Johnson seems to be saying. Now it's time for me to go. Bumpy Johnson is a perfect example of a type known as the regional legend. Feared and revered in Harlem, whose criminal life he dominated from to , Johnson has never officially entered the pantheon of mainstream American villains, which is dominated by such high-profile gangsters as Al Capone, Lucky Luciano, Dutch Schultz and John Gotti.
Clair, and later did business with Italian mobster Charles "Lucky" Luciano. Johnson would go on to mentor Frank Lucas, who would take over Harlem's operations and turn it into a haven for drug trafficking. He was given the nickname "Bumpy" due to an abnormal growth on his head. After his older brother was wanted for the murder of a white man, a year-old Johnson, along with most of his other siblings, was sent to Harlem for safety. Despite moving up north, there was no avoiding the scourge of racism, and Johnson, with his small frame and thick Southern accent, was a target for bullying. However, Johnson's bad temper kept him from being a hapless victim, and starting at an early age, he learned how to be a scrappy fighter. Through Hewlett, Johnson became a highly regarded bodyguard for high-rolling illegal gamblers in Harlem.
He has been the subject or character of a number of Hollywood films including The Cotton Club , Hoodlum , and most recently, American Gangster. Johnson was originally from Charleston, South Carolina. During his formative years, his family moved north to Harlem. He was always armed and did not hesitate to resort to violence to achieve his objectives. By his 30th birthday, Johnson had spent almost half his life in prison.