George Weinberg was born into a family of Russian immigrants living in New York City in 1901. Like his older brother, Abraham, George Weinberg entered the world of organized crime as a young man. He and Abraham were both recruited into the organization of Dutch Schultz, “The Beer Baron of the Bronx,” as he expanded his bootlegging empire into Manhattan during the early 1930s. George’s brother, Abraham, was Schultz’s right hand man and enforcer. However, George was merely the accountant who kept the books for Schultz’s empire. He worked closely with Otto “Abbadabba” Berman on the Harlem Numbers Racket, helping to implement Berman’s scheme to maximize profits by manipulating the odds at local race tracks.
In 1935, Dutch Schultz was murdered and Abraham Weinberg disappeared. This made George understandably nervous, so he agreed to cooperate with the authorities in return for protection. Apparently suffering from second thoughts and guilt, on January 29, 1939, Weinberg committed suicide while under police guard at a safe house in White Plains, New York. He stole a gun away from the detective assigned to guard him and shot himself in the head.
George Weinberg, 2009
Mixed Media Silkscreen on Paper
19″ x 29″