Rhodes Gang

For the Union guerrillas active in the AlabamaFlorida region during the later years of the American Civil War, see John M. Rhodes.
Rhodes Gang
Founding location Hell's Kitchen, New York
Years active 1890s–1910s
Territory Manhattan
Ethnicity Irish-American
Criminal activities Burglary, armed robbery, street muggings, assault, strikebreaking.
Allies Gopher Gang
Rivals Parlor Mob
The Gorillas

The Rhodes Gang was an American street gang based in New York City at the turn of the 20th century. The group was one of several smaller Hell's Kitchen gangs affiliated with the Gopher Gang, all of whom were almost constantly fighting among each other, among these including The Gorillas and the Parlor Mob. [1][2] They were known, at times, to briefly put aside their differences when police attempted to interfere in gang fights [3] and authorities found the area impossible to control. [4]

The membership of the Rhodes Gang, like many other rival gangs, quickly dropped following the breakup of the Gophers by railroad detectives of the New York Central Railroad in 1910. The New York Police Department soon began efforts to rid the city of the remaining street gangs and, by 1916, the Rhodes Gang and the other Manhattan-based gangs had disbanded permanently. [5]

The gang was referenced in the historical novels A Long Line of Dead Men: A Matthew Scudder Mystery (1999) by Lawrence Block and Michael Walsh's And All the Saints: A Novel (2003).


  1. Asbury, Herbert. The Gangs of New York: An Informal History of the New York Underworld. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1928. (pg. 236) ISBN 1-56025-275-8
  2. Sante, Luc. Low Life: Lures and Snares of Old New York. New York: Macmillan, 2003. (pg. 225) ISBN 0-374-52899-3
  3. Marcuse, Maxwell F. This Was New York!: A Nostalgic Picture of Gotham in the Gaslight Era. New York: LIM Press, 1969. (pg. 63)
  4. Bayor, Ronald H. and Timothy J. Meagher. The New York Irish. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1997. (pg. 218) ISBN 0-8018-5764-3
  5. Federal Writers' Project. New York City: Vol 1, New York City Guide. Vol. I. American Guide Series. New York: Random House, 1939. (pg. 156)
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