Joe Masseria Biography
(Italian-American Mafia Boss of ‘Genovese Crime Family’)
Birthday: January 17, 1887 (Capricorn)
Born In: Menfi, Italy
Giuseppe "Joe the Boss" Masseria was a Mafia boss in New York City who led one of the five major New York City organized crime families of the Italian-American Mafia, the Genovese crime family, from 1922 till his murder in 1931. Masseria emigrated from Sicily to the US at age 16 to escape a murder indictment in Italy as there was no extradition treaty between the two countries at that time. In the US he became involved with a group of Italian killers and Black Hand extortionists and conducted several petty crimes. He started working as an enforcer of the Morello crime family and gained power in the gang in the mid-1910s following murder of Nick Morello. Gradually he acquired power and waged war with Salvatore D'Aquila, the "Boss of Bosses" that ended with D’Aquila’s murder. Joe "The Boss" Masseria later began a bloody power struggle with Salvatore Maranzano that initiated the Castellammarese War resulting in victory of the Maranzano faction while Masseria was shot dead by order of his own lieutenant Charles “Lucky” Luciano.