In 1930s New York, the Mayor Took on the Mafia by Banning Artichokes

Feb 21, 2022 407

BY: MARK HAY

IN THE EARLY HOURS OF December 21, 1935, New York mayor Fiorello LaGuardia walked into the Bronx Terminal Market with a cadre of cops. As the police played a horn fanfare, he hopped onto the back of a vegetable truck and addressed the assembled farmers and peddlers.

Starting December 26, New York City would institute a total ban on the sale, display, or possession of a commodity that posed a “serious and threatening emergency to the city.” This substance, at the time available in any city market, was controlled by “a monopoly of doubtful legality” (in other words, the mafia). 

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SOURCE: https://www.atlasobscura.com

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