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Author Topic: The Hoods  (Read 77817 times)
drinkanddestroy
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« Reply #60 on: July 09, 2012, 12:17:15 PM »

This is true. On the other hand, Goldberg/Grey was from an older generation of gangsters than Hill and Co., and probably less sophisticated. They may not have bothered with falsifying names or records at the time.

Still I don't think Harry Goldberg could be that uncommon a name, but that's just me.

Oh, I am sure that Harry Goldberg is a very common name.


And it's not a matter of "falsifying names or records." It is simply a matter of refraining from filling them out. I'd guess that gangsters of any generation weren't too concerned about their civic duties.


p.s. in my previous post, I should have said census records "are filled out voluntarily" rather than "have to be filled out voluntarily," which is kind of an awkward way of phrasing it  Wink

« Last Edit: July 09, 2012, 12:22:05 PM by drinkanddestroy » Logged

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« Reply #61 on: July 09, 2012, 05:40:02 PM »

Oh, I am sure that Harry Goldberg is a very common name.


And it's not a matter of "falsifying names or records." It is simply a matter of refraining from filling them out. I'd guess that gangsters of any generation weren't too concerned about their civic duties.


p.s. in my previous post, I should have said census records "are filled out voluntarily" rather than "have to be filled out voluntarily," which is kind of an awkward way of phrasing it  Wink

Where is 2531 Beverley Road Brooklyn?

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« Reply #62 on: July 09, 2012, 05:41:38 PM »

also wouldn't the publisher, have some interesting info, the check was made out to somebody, no?

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« Reply #63 on: July 09, 2012, 07:16:31 PM »

also wouldn't the publisher, have some interesting info, the check was made out to somebody, no?

good luck getting that info. I am sure it's all confidential... Frayling writes about how Leone had a very difficult time getting in touch with Grey; Grey's literary agent/lawyer refused to put him in touch with him (I guess cuz Grey wanted to remain private and hidden; he eventually acquiesced to a meeting with Leone only cuz it turned out he was a fan of Leone's movies.... But I am sure that Grey's publisher would never be allowed to give out that sort of confidential info. Also, all the versions of the book that I see now in print are from some company called blackmask.com http://www.amazon.com/Hoods-Harry-Grey/dp/1596543469/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1341881886&sr=1-1&keywords=the+hoods

 Not sure what their deal is, whether they are affiliated with Grey's original publishing company, or if they are just printing this book unofficially? I mean, I think the copyright doesn't expire until 70 years after the author's death, but if you look at the book, it looks like it's made kind of cheaply; some pages end like halfway down the page for no apparent reason; the printing looks kind of shabby, which led me to wonder if this blacksmask.com is a real publishing company that owns the publishing rights to the book or whether they are just copying and printing it unofficially.... Anyway, even if Grey's family still has the copyright and are getting royalties from blackmask, I am sure blackmas wouldn't give you private info about Grey or his family.



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« Reply #64 on: July 09, 2012, 07:24:09 PM »

Where is 2531 Beverley Road Brooklyn?

It's not far from Prospect Park http://maps.google.com/maps?q=2531+beverly+road+brooklyn,+NY&hl=en&ll=40.638967,-73.946915&spn=0.255833,0.479279&sll=37.0625,-95.677068&sspn=34.176059,61.347656&hnear=2531+Beverley+Rd,+Brooklyn,+Kings,+New+York+11226&t=h&z=11

But I believe that Grey grew up on the Lower East Side, on Delancey Street. His nickname in the book is "Noodles the Shiv from Delancey Street" (that knife of his, which only makes a couple of brief appearances in the movie, is frequently mentioned in the book.

If I recall correctly, he writes in the book that at one point in his childhood, his family was evicted from their apartment cuz they couldn't pay rent (his father was ill and dies when Noodles was young; don't remember if he was still alive at the time they were evicted), and someone paid to get them on their feet and set them up in a new apartment, I think it may have been Max's rich uncle, who owned the funeral parlor that the boys ultimately took over and used as cover for their gangster activities (Max's uncle and the funeral business is a another point that plays a big role in the book, but is only briefly mentioned in the movie).

Is it possible that the new apartment that they moved to was in Brooklyn? i don't recall. I read the book once a long time ago; I have it on my shelf but it's tough to find info in there, it's not labeled with any coherent chapters. Maybe one of the many board members here who are obsessed with the book can remember where to find that.

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« Reply #65 on: July 10, 2012, 04:10:53 AM »

Harry Goldberg is a common name and it's too early to say whether Harry, husband of Rose, is our guy.  More research is needed but birth and death records, location, and rented accomodation in Brooklyn look good.

There are only 3 recorded deaths of a Harry Goldberg within the boroughs in 1982; 1 in Kings, 1 in New York and 1 in Nassau.

With regard to births, there is only one for Harry Goldberg in Kings (September 1896) but six for Harry Goldberg in Manhattan (1894-1896).

In some countries it is compulsory to give information to enable a census to be prepared and Mrs Goldberg and their children were not criminals. The X in the 1940 census against Rose's name indicates that it was she who provided the information.

I have found Harry, Rose and Bernard in the 1925 state census when they were living on the 2nd floor at 1547 77th Street Brooklyn.

Personally I'm ignoring for now any information in The Hoods but facts from official sources may coincide with some of the details in the book and would be a bonus.  The gang as kids carrying baseball bats for Monk Eastman makes more sense now and we may find out that Noodles' father was named Israel etc.


« Last Edit: July 10, 2012, 04:53:52 AM by chris » Logged
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« Reply #66 on: July 10, 2012, 05:43:30 AM »

This is in Bensonhurst  Smiley



Yes, I believe that it is required to fill out census information in America (as a Necessary and Proper exercise of Congress's specific duty to conduct a census), although nobody will throw you in prison for not doing so. I am sure that most law-abiding people do fill out the census forms, but I don't know if Harry Grey fits that category. (Personally, I think that most of his book is bullshit, just like Leone did. Some of those stories are just pure fantasy. Like the one about the casino in Atlantic City, and that machine with the paper, and that guy in the coffin who they frightened to death. All bullshit. As Leone said, the childhood stories seem true, the adult stuff is bullshit and much is copied from gangster movies.
 And btw, the refrain "gettin' it up the ass" in the movie probably has its source comes from Noodles's homophobia in the book: he never misses an opportunity to make fun of queers. Well , I think the real-life Noodles himself took it up the ass from the gang, especially Max. He doesn't miss an opportunity to boast about how many girls he supposedly banged -- he says if he laid em out in a line on Broadway, they'd go "from the Bowery to the Bronx" -- , forgetting that whores don't count! But it's pretty darn clear that this dude who is so obsessed with girls and food, also liked to pack the fudge a little too. Read the book and you'll know what I mean. I think his strong hints about cocksucking are about the only adult parts of the book that are true. All the rest of the adult stuff is fantasy.

How about the part where they were enforcing a strike and offered drinks loaded with knockout drops to the strikebreakers -- every single one accepted the drink and got knocked out., pretty soon there were twelve or so guys lying in a heap in the room  Roll Eyes I laughed all the way through the book, it's all such bullshit. I enjoyed it cuz you get something of a historical feel for the era, especially the childhood stuff with the tenements on the Lower east Side. But these guy, if he was a gangster, was a two-bit nobody. I think he's some guy who MAY have done an occasional job, but most of his work was in his fantasies. Anybody who did real serious jobs wouldn't have to fantasize the nonsense he puts in the book. He probably dreamed up these stories while sucking Cockeye's cock.

« Last Edit: July 10, 2012, 06:07:25 AM by drinkanddestroy » Logged

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« Reply #67 on: July 27, 2012, 08:19:09 PM »

Another way of trying to find out something about the real Harry Grey/ Goldberg is this sentence from 'The Hoods' after the gang of kids have been caught for robbery:
'I was sent to the Jewish Home, Cedar Knolls, up in Hawthorne, New York.'
Grey may have just made this up for the novel but I think it's worth investigating whether it might actually have happened to him.

According to a report in the New York times in 1907, the home was opened that year by the Jewish Protectory and Aid Society.
http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F70D11FC385A15738DDDAA0994DD405B878CF1D3

There's a home for troubled children that is still running in Hawthorne and it's owned and operated by the Jewish Board of Family and Children’s Services (JBFCS):
http://www.jbfcs.org/programs.php?id=177

I'm going to contact the JBFCS and ask if they have records for the home and if so, whether a Harry Goldberg attended there.

In 'The Hoods' it happens around 1917 (it comes just after the chapter when he says that 'President Wilson declared war on Germany'). But not sure if this can be true for Goldberg. If the Harry Goldberg who was born in 1895/6 is our man (the one that Chris has posted census records about), he would be about 22 in 1917 - too old for the home. Maybe he went earlier?


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« Reply #68 on: July 28, 2012, 03:58:01 AM »

Another way of trying to find out something about the real Harry Grey/ Goldberg is this sentence from 'The Hoods' after the gang of kids have been caught for robbery:
'I was sent to the Jewish Home, Cedar Knolls, up in Hawthorne, New York.'
Grey may have just made this up for the novel but I think it's worth investigating whether it might actually have happened to him.

It's a good idea.  I tried to do some research a few years ago and I sent a fairly naive email to the Jewish home but received no reply.

At that time however I was relying too much on the dates and facts in 'The Hoods' being correct.  Harry Grey said he was in the home for eighteen months and when he came out prohibition was in effect.  Although The Volstead Act is dated 1919, prohibiting the manufacture and sale of intoxicating liquors didn't come into force until January 1920.

In 'The Hoods' Noodles is an avid book reader and ponders how he could tell his own life story in a book, perhaps 20 to 30 years after the events.  From page 106:

"As a factual, biographical piece?  Nah, no good.  The actual facts would land me and everybody else in jail.  I'll treat it as escapist stuff, omitting time and slightly camouflaging the place.  That's it.  I'll sort of blend factual happenings into fiction.  After I write it, I guess I'd better keep it for twenty years or so.  By that time probably the alert newspapers will finally get wind of this fantastic Combine, and I won't really be spilling the beans.  After that many years would the statute of limitations apply?  Or does it only pertain to civil matters?  I'll get myself a law book at Brentano's and look it up."

I think if he did go to the Jewish Home, it was much earlier e.g. 1910.

Places like Jewish homes and of course Sing Sing prison have to complete official censuses but it's a bit hit and miss since Federal and State censuses are only done on a specific day every 10 years.

I can find only one Harry Goldberg who died near to New York in Feb/Mar 1982.  He was born in Manhattan's Lower East Side in about 1895.  This ties in with Sergio Leone's statement that Grey was over 70 when he met him in 1968 and fits better with the gang as kids carrying baseball bats for the Monk Eastman gang.

He can be matched accurately to birth and death records, newspaper articles and censuses for 1900, 1910, 1915, 1920, 1925, 1930 & 1940.  There are some similarities with Noodles in his early years.  This Goldberg lived close to Delancey Street on adjoining Columbia Street near Williamsburg bridge in 1900 and in 1910 lived on Essex Street which again adjoins Delancey Street.  He then got richer, married Rose Schultz and moved to Brooklyn.  Bookkeeping seems to run in the family.

I'm trying to get more details of the incarcerations at Sing Sing and these may help to solve this 60 year old mystery.  But there is of course the possibility that he died away from New York or that his name was not Harry Goldberg.


« Last Edit: July 28, 2012, 04:12:04 AM by chris » Logged
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« Reply #69 on: July 31, 2012, 11:35:52 PM »

There are only 3 recorded deaths of a Harry Goldberg within the boroughs in 1982; 1 in Kings, 1 in New York and 1 in Nassau.

Just wondering, which is the one you've found an obituary and census records for (ie the one married to Rose and with sons Edwin and Bernard)? Is it the one who died in Kings? Maybe one of the other two is our man.

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« Reply #70 on: July 31, 2012, 11:43:03 PM »

I did a search on H Goldberg 2531 Beverly Rd and something came up. He placed an advertisement in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle in June 1936 looking for a housekeeper ("Girl, white..."):
http://fultonhistory.com/Newspaper%205/Brooklyn%20NY%20Daily%20Eagle/Brooklyn%20NY%20Daily%20Eagle%201936%20Grayscale/Brooklyn%20NY%20Daily%20Eagle%201936%20%20a%20Grayscale%20-%200980.pdf

I don't think this helps in any way in our search but it might be part of the jigsaw. And it's kind of interesting anyway.

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« Reply #71 on: July 31, 2012, 11:52:09 PM »

I just thought of something. In searching for Harry Goldberg in records of births, deaths, etc we should probably check for HAROLD as well as Harry since it's possible that he could've had that name. In this register (http://www.italiangen.org/NYCBirthsearch.asp) for example there are 65 Harry Goldbergs born in New York between 1880 and 1909 but there are also 12 Harolds (and also one 'Harri'!)

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« Reply #72 on: August 01, 2012, 12:21:48 AM »

I did a search on H Goldberg 2531 Beverly Rd and something came up. He placed an advertisement in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle in June 1936 looking for a housekeeper ("Girl, white..."):
http://fultonhistory.com/Newspaper%205/Brooklyn%20NY%20Daily%20Eagle/Brooklyn%20NY%20Daily%20Eagle%201936%20Grayscale/Brooklyn%20NY%20Daily%20Eagle%201936%20%20a%20Grayscale%20-%200980.pdf

I don't think this helps in any way in our search but it might be part of the jigsaw. And it's kind of interesting anyway.

nice find! and it's a good point about "Harold," you should definitely search for that name too  Afro

« Last Edit: August 01, 2012, 12:22:52 AM by drinkanddestroy » Logged

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« Reply #73 on: August 01, 2012, 03:06:07 AM »

I did a search on H Goldberg 2531 Beverly Rd and something came up. He placed an advertisement in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle in June 1936 looking for a housekeeper ("Girl, white..."):
http://fultonhistory.com/Newspaper%205/Brooklyn%20NY%20Daily%20Eagle/Brooklyn%20NY%20Daily%20Eagle%201936%20Grayscale/Brooklyn%20NY%20Daily%20Eagle%201936%20%20a%20Grayscale%20-%200980.pdf

I don't think this helps in any way in our search but it might be part of the jigsaw. And it's kind of interesting anyway.

Interesting find.   Afro

I can't find any deaths recorded for Harold Goldberg in 1982.

Although 3 Harry Goldbergs died in 1982, 2 of the deaths occurred after filming started.

Short bio of  the Harry Goldberg who died at 11561 Long Beach Nassau New York in Mar 1982:

Harry Goldberg born Feb 1894/5 Manhattan and  Rose Schultz born May 1895/6 Brooklyn

Census information:

1900 (Harry) 56 Columbia Street Manhattan (Rose) 48 Ellery Street Brooklyn

1910 (Harry) 104-6 Essex Street Manhattan (Rose) 320 Alabama Ave Brooklyn

1915 (Harry) 369 Vernon Avenue Brooklyn asst clerk (Rose) 369 Vernon Avenue Brooklyn bookeeper

1920 (Harry) 369 Vernon Avenue Brooklyn clerk furniture business  (Rose) 369 Vernon Avenue Brooklyn bookeeper shirt business

1922 Harry & Rose married

1925 (both) 1547 77th Street Brooklyn (2nd Floor) (Harry) manager furniture business (Rose) housework

1930 (both) 2411 Beverley Road Brooklyn (Harry) manager furniture company (Rose) none

1940 (both) 2531 Beverley Road Brooklyn (Harry) advertising director furniture house (Rose) none

Family:

Harry & Rose had 2 children Bernard b.1923 and Edwin b.1928

Harry's father - Samuel Goldberg - occupations:

(1900) Tinn Smith (1910) proprietor retail liquor store (Jan 1920) liquor merchant

Rose's father - Joseph Schultz - occupation furrier
 
 

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« Reply #74 on: August 01, 2012, 03:43:53 AM »

Great work! That's a whole load of info about Harry Goldberg and if he's the only one who died just before filming then it sounds like he's the right one. There's an obituary for his son Bernard in the Baltimore Sun in August 29 2004. It's definitely the right Bernard since the relatives all connect with those in Harry's obit.
http://articles.baltimoresun.com/2004-08-29/news/0408290370_1_goldberg-sol-levinson-zachary-r

Now we've got to confirm that this Harry is the one who wrote The Hoods. I've managed to find a contact for one of Bernard's children and have asked whether they can confirm if Harry wrote novels. Let's wait and see if I get a reply!.....

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