Charles Lucky Luciano
With the death of Maranzano, Luciano became the dominant organized crime boss in the United States. He had reached the pinnacle of America’s underworld, directing criminal rules, policies, and activities along with the other family bosses. Luciano also had his own crime family, which controlled lucrative criminal rackets in New York City such as illegal gambling, bookmaking, loan-sharking, drug trafficking, and extortion. Luciano became very influential in labor and union activities and controlled the Manhattan Waterfront, garbage hauling, construction, Garment Center businesses, and trucking.
Luciano abolished the title of capo di tutti i capi or “boss of all bosses”, insisting that the position created trouble between the families, rather than declare himself the most powerful and make himself a target for other families. Luciano preferred to quietly maintain control through unofficial alliances with other family bosses. Luciano felt that the ceremony of becoming a “made-man”, or an amico nostro, in a crime family was a Sicilian anachronism that should be discontinued. However, Lansky persuaded Luciano to keep the practice, arguing that young people needed rituals to promote obedience to the family. Luciano also stressed the importance of omertà, the oath of silence. Finally, Luciano kept the five crime families that Maranzano had instituted.
Luciano elevated his most trusted Italian associates to high-level positions in what was now the Luciano crime family. Genovese became underboss and Costello consigliere. Michael “Trigger Mike” Coppola, Anthony Strollo, Joe Adonis, and Anthony Carfano all served as caporegimes. Because Lansky and Siegel were non-Italians, neither man could hold official positions within any Cosa Nostra family. However, Lansky was a top advisor to Luciano and Siegel a trusted associate.