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|New Orleans|  Charles Matranga

Birth: 1857 - Sicily

Death: October 28, 1943












"Millionaire Charlie", Charles Matranga and his brother Antonio were key members of a Mafia group that took root in New Orleans in the 1870s. Carlo Matranga, born in Sicily in 1857 and taken to the United States as a baby, eventually became the leader of the New Orleans "Stuppaghieri" Mafia group co-founded by his father Salvatore and Salvatore Marino. In the 1880s, the Matranga Brothers began moving in on the dock rackets of rival Giardinieri Mafia leader Joe Provenzano. By 1888, authorities estimated that a Matranga-Macheca gang had strengthened itself by importing 320 members of the Monreale, Sicily, Stuppagghieri. War between the Matranga and Provenzano factions began within a year. New Orleans Police Chief David Hennessey actively supported the Provenzano side.

Charles Matranga was among those charged with conspiracy in connection with the assassination of Hennessey in 1890. No convictions were obtained for any of the 19 defendants in the murder case (only nine stood trial), and the public took matters into its own hands. Joseph P. Macheca was one of 11 defendants shot and hanged to death by vigilantes who stormed the prison. Matranga escaped the Crescent City lynchings and returned to a leadership position in the New Orleans Mafia and remained there (quickly incorporating the remainder of the Provenzano mob) until 1922 (possibly 1925), when he turned the reins over to Sylvestro "Sam" Carolla. The Matranga family was connected with Mafia organizations in Florida and southern California. A Matranga Mafia clan in the Los Angeles area later moved into San Diego. Charles Matranga died of natural causes on Oct. 28, 1943.


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