The Whyos (pronounced Why-Ohs) were New York’s most notorious gang after the Civil War, organizing their criminal activities and terrorizing law abiding citizens of the Gilded Age. Find out when they lived, how they broke the law and who they were — from Googie Corcoran to Dandy Johnny, as well as two particularly notable guys named Danny.
ALSO: How much does it cost to have somebody’s ear bitten off?
ORIGINALLY RELEASED MARCH 28, 2009
FEATURING 2016 BONUS MATERIAL: Greg reads an excerpt from Herbert Asbury’s Gangs of New York, recounting the sad fate of Dandy Johnny Dolan.
THIS IS A SPECIAL ILLUSTRATED PODCAST! Chapter headings with images have been embedded in this show, so if your listening device is compatible with AAC/M4A files, just hit play and a variety of pictures should pop up. The audio is superior than the original as well. (This will work as a normal audio file even if the images don’t appear.)
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Famed comic creators Joe Simon and Jack Kirby had a fascination with early gang life and once illustrated their adventures for a 1947 comic book called Real Clue Crime Stories.
Another artist for the a different issue of the same comic book took a crack at the story of Dandy Johnny Dolan that same year:
Comic art above courtesy the Jack Kirby Museum
A vivid illustration from the New York World, January 23, 1888, outlining the players involved in Danny Driscoll’s murder of Beezy Garrity.
The violent execution of Driscoll lead the World to run a further article (see the right side of the page) condoning the use of a new form of execution — by electrocution.
Faces of the Whyo Gang: Googy Corcoran, Clops Connolly, Big Josh Hines and Baboon Connolly
Mulberry Bend: The lair of the Whyos (picture by Jacob Riis)
The pulpy cover of Herbert Asbury’s Gangs of New York.