Two boys--John Connolly, and James "Whitey" Bulger--grew up together on the streets of South Boston. Decades later, in the late 1970s, they would meet again. By then, Connolly was a major figure in the FBI's Boston office and Whitey had become godfather of the Irish Mob. What happened between them-a dirty deal to trade secrets and take down Boston's Italian Mafia in the process--would spiral out of control, leading to murders, and drug dealing, and racketeering indictments. And, ultimately, to Bulger making the FBI's Ten Most Wanted List.
Told in compelling narrative style by the Boston Globe reporters who covered the case from the beginning, Black Mass is a riveting epic crime story that is also a book about Boston and Irish America; about the pull of place; and about the ties between that blind.
Gang of Two?
Like a curtain rising, the garage doors at the Lancaster Foreign Car Service flew open in the spring of 1980 on a new era in Boston's underworld order. Howie Winter had fallen, and a re-alignment was underway. It was an industry shake-out, and standing in the bays of the repair shop were Whitey Bulger and Stevie Flemmi, arms folded, ready to take center stage and exploit any and all opportunities.
The old haunt, Marshall Motors in Somerville, had been abandoned in favor of this new downtown location. Though some of the former Winter Hill gangsters were on the run, others had come along. George Kaufman, who operated Marshall Motors as a front for Howie Winter, now operated the Lancaster Street Garage for Bulger and Flemmi. In the mornings the bays might be filled with the clanging and banging of mechanics' tools, but by early afternoon the tone of the place changed markedly. Most days around 1:30, Bulger and Flemmi arrived to take over the...
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