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Brooklyn Aerie: The day Prohibition died, Nathan's poured 80,000 glasses of beer

Nathan's Famous dished out a whole lot of booze after Prohibition was lifted. AP photo

Brooklyn Daily Eagle

The day after Prohibition ended in 1933, the Nathan’s Famous stand in Coney Island served 80,000 glasses of free draft beer.

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When Brooklyn’s elite Crescent Athletic Club opened a branch in Huntington, Long Island, one of the sports offered to members was — polo.

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Until the late 19th century, the tallest structure in Brooklyn was a 300-foot “Steel Tower” from the 1876 Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia that Andrew Culver purchased and brought to Coney Island for the terminus of his Culver steam railroad. The “Culver Line” evolved into today’s F line down McDonald Avenue.

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Did you know that one of the world’s greatest engineers once lived on State Street in Brooklyn Heights? His name: George Goethals, who built the Panama Canal.

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Strange, but although there are hundreds of streets in Brooklyn named for people who we no longer know, there is not one street named for Henry Ward Beecher, who next to Walt Whitman is probably Brooklyn’s most famous individual.

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Just so you will know if asked, the longest dead-end street in New York City is Columbia Street in Red Hook.

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Did you know that it was not until 1946 that Flatbush began using city water? Until then, its water was supplied by a private company, from a facility located on the current site of Flatbush Gardens.

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The last time anyone “jumped” from Coney Island’s Parachute Jump was in 1968.

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Judging from the ads in newspapers, the automobiles popular in Brooklyn in the 1930s were Willys-Knight (equipped with radio), Franklin (air-cooled) and
Auburn (free-wheeling).

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Gil Hodges is the only player in professional baseball to have a bridge named for him.

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It was not until 1822 that the village of Brooklyn passed a law requiring buildings, both residential and commercial, to have street numbers. Owners were required not only to number their buildings, but to pay for the numbers themselves. 

December 5, 2012 - 4:13pm


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