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Running the NumbersRace, Police, and the History of Urban Gambling$
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Matthew Vaz

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780226690445

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226690582.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 16 September 2021



(p.1) Introduction
Running the Numbers
Matthew Vaz
University of Chicago Press

“My father also dreamed about numbers,” writes former secretary of state Colin Powell, reflecting on his days in the Bronx during the late 1950s. “Then, one Saturday night, my father dreamed a number, and the next morning at St. Margaret’s the same number appeared on the hymn board. This, surely, was God taking Luther Powell by the hand and leading him to the Promised Land. Somehow, Pop and Aunt Beryl managed to scrape up $25 to put on the number. And they hit it, straight. I still remember the atmosphere of joy, disbelief, and anxiety when the numbers runner delivered the brown paper bags to our house. … $10,000 in tens and twenties, more than three years’ pay. … And that was how the Powells managed to buy 183-68 Elmira Avenue, in the community of Hollis in the Borough of Queens.”...

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