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"This place is my reputation. My blood. My legacy."

Harlem's Paradise is a nightclub founded by Buggy Stokes and Quincy McIver. It became the base of the criminal activities of the Stokes Crime Family and a front to launder its dirty money. After Buggy's death, the club was inherited by Mama Mabel, who passed it on to Cornell "Cottonmouth" Stokes. After his murder at the hands of his cousin Mariah Dillard, she took over the club and his criminal enterprises, before relinquishing it to Luke Cage upon her death.


Prohibition Era

"Lucky Luciano used to own this building. It still has a lot of prohibition nooks and crannies."
Luke Cage to Misty Knight[src]

The building that would become Harlem's Paradise once belonged to notorious criminal Lucky Luciano. Because of the Prohibition Luciano ordered that the building contain several nooks and crannies, and storage space under building.[1]

In the late 60's, the building was bought by Samuel "Buggy" Stokes and his friend Quincy McIver. They built their own night club, Harlem's Paradise and McIver designed the general interior of the club. Stokes and McIver families founded their new successful business based on club and rum named Bushmaster.[2] Italian criminals, Irish cops and local politicians became interested in the building and tried to take it tor themselves. McIver did not want to sell the club because it meant too much to him but Stokes wasn't so resistant. A deal was made where he would kill his friend and the club would remain under his control. Stokes killed McIver, but McIver managed to get a retaliatory gut shot off on Stokes first. It took Buggy Stokes five months to die.[3]

Quincy's wife Gwen tried to claim her rights to the club and confronted Mama Mabel and Pistol Pete. She failed and the Stokes killed her.[4] Mabel and Pete ran Harlem's Paradise for several years and made it the center of their criminal activities. The club was in decline before their death.[5]

Cottonmouth's Management

Cottonmouth overlooking Harlem's Paradise

"This place was a roach trap by the time Mama Mabel died. Now look at it. Harlem's Paradise. May as well be the new Cotton Club."

In the wake of the death of Mama Mabel, her grandson Cornell "Cottonmouth" Stokes took control of Harlem's Paradise whilst also building himself a new career as a criminal who more or less ran all of Harlem's criminal activities. During this time, Stokes oversaw the operations of Harlem's Paradise, ensuring that they kept the best quality of service and the best music acts they could find.

In 2015, he organized a weapons deal between his organization and Domingo Colon's. Colon came to the club whilst Raphael Saadiq was performing, to discuss the deal with Stokes.[5]

Mariah Dillard's Management

To be added

Bushmaster's Management

"What was built by the fada now belongs to the son."
"And what's your plan for the Paradise in Harlem, now that it's yours?"
"It's all for the people and the pickney dem. Every dollar we make, every penny goes back home to the youth to mash up the sufferation there."
Bushmaster and Anansi[src]

To be added

Return to Mariah Dillard

To be added

Luke Cage's Management

"You know, just because she gave it to you didn't mean you had to take it."
"Everything flows through here, right? I can watch from above. Like a hawk."
"Or a dictator."
Misty Knight and Luke Cage[src]

To be added


Name Position Status
Samuel Stokes Former Owner Deceased
Quincy McIver Former Owner Deceased
Mabel Stokes Former Owner Deceased
Cornell Stokes Former Owner Deceased
Mariah Dillard Former Owner Deceased
John McIver Former Owner Alive
Luke Cage Owner Alive
Nate Manager Alive
Dante Chapman Bartender Deceased
Candace Miller Waitress Deceased

Musical Performers


Appearances for Harlem's Paradise

In chronological order:

Behind the Scenes


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