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From the Brooklyn Aerie: February 8, 2012

Brooklyn Daily Eagle

The last published figure on how much a seat from the late lamented Ebbets Field was selling for was — $2,000.


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Until new forms of printing such as electronic displaced the linotype, all but 1% of the world’s typesetting machinery was manufactured in Fort Greene where the manufacturing facilities of the Mergenthaler and Intertype Companies were located.

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Yes, it’s true. There really was a movie made in 1952 titled “Bela Lugosi Meets a Brooklyn Gorilla.” Its plot  involved two goofy characters parodying Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis who meet a mad scientist (guess who?) in a jungle. Total  production cost: an estimated $50,000.

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Did you know that E. R. Squibb, the founder of the pharmaceutical manufacturing company that bore his name and was originally located at the foot of Columbia Heights, near Fulton Ferry, made his patents for medicines available free to any other company that wanted them.

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Believe it or not, there was a vogue in Brooklyn in the early 1900s for playing tennis on ice with the players on skates.

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George Tilyou has another claim to fame besides building the giant Steeplechase Park. In 1882 with his father he opened Coney Island’s first theater, a vaudeville house. Its name: The Surf Theater.


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I wonder if the Lorillard Tobacco Company that markets such popular cigarette brands as Old Gold, Newport and Kent knows that the controversial Tobacco Warehouse in Brooklyn Bridge Park was built by Pierre Lorillard, one of the company’s early presidents.


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Wilson Avenue in Ridgewood was not the avenue’s first name. Originally it had been called Hamburg Ave., the name change taking place during World War I because of anti-German sentiment.


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The first burials in Green-Wood Cemetery were those of the Hanna family. Actually they were reburials, as they had been buried first in New York Marble Cemetery in Manhattan’s East Village,


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The employees of Joe’s Restaurant on Court St. in Downtown Brooklyn didn’t lose out when Joe, the owner, died. In his will he left the restaurant to them.


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They always say that Ocean Parkway was the first six-lane parkway in the world, but actually it has seven lanes. In parts of the parkway there is a seventh lane for left turns.


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To his fellow students at Brooklyn’s Commercial High School he was known as an Orthodox Jew student named Sidney Frumkin, but in the world of sports he became Sidney Franklin, one of bullfighting’s leading  top matadors, who in the 1920s and 1930s fought bulls in Mexico and Spain and was praised by such bull-fighting aficionados as Ernest Hemingway.

February 8, 2012 - 1:03pm


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