There are many ways to tell the fascinating tales pertaining to the history of Buffalo. Some people take tours, while others sit down to a good book. These days, more and more of Buffalo’s history is coming to light, thanks to a concerted effort by dedicated enthusiasts who have made it their mission to enlighten people about the various characters that helped to shape this city, for better or worse.
You may have read about this city’s notorious gangster, Fingy Conners, or you might have learned about him on a boat tour of the Buffalo River. Maybe you saw a synopsis of his life on a placard at Canalside? Along with these various “tributes” to the scandalous scoundrel, author Richard Sullivan has compiled a mini documentary that tells the narrative of Fingy in an entertaining way – a way that is both informative and captivating.
Real-life Godfather Fingy Conners—Waterfront Czar, shipping magnate and employer of 6,000 laborers—out-villains both fictional ‘The Godfather’ mob boss Vito Corleone and ‘On The Waterfront’ stevedore boss Johnny Friendly of Hollywood lore. Conners controlled the Great Lakes’ shipping business for decades, ruining thousands of lives in the process.
When I asked Conners about the inspiration behind the video, he said, “I’m going to release the 5th and final Volume “Everybody Dies In The End” of my THE FIRST WARD Buffalo historical novel series June 30, so I put this mini-doc together to generate interest in the doings of my monstrous ancestors.
“[As for the video itself] I (obviously) got inspiration from Ken Burns’ PBS features. I have been a photographer forever and also collect photos, so these photos came from my private collection as well as free public domain online sources such as the Library of Congress and NY Public Library website.