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MILESTONES: December 6, birthdays for Andrew Cuomo, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Johnny Manziel

Brooklyn Today

December 6, 2017 Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Andrew Cuomo. Photo by Andy Kropa/Invision/AP
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Greetings, Brooklyn.  Today is the 343rd day of the year.

On this day in 1947, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle front page reported Mayor William O’Dwyer’s controversial radio speech, in which he called for an 8-cent transit fare to help meet an expected $51 billion deficit, a 5-cent tax on taxicab fares, a $5 fee on passenger cars and $10 fee on trucks. As that edition went to press, O’Dwyer was awaiting the fallout from his proposal … And the CIO Sanitation Workers union charged that their trucks were in bad disrepair and thus imperiled both the workers and the public.

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On this day in 1917, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle front page reported on the multiple explosions in the harbor of Halifax, Nova Scotia, in Canada. A Belgian steamer, and a French freighter, the Mont Blanc, both loaded with ammunition, collided in foggy Halifax Harbor and exploded. They were carrying 8 million tons of TNT that was intended for use in World War I, and were among several ships of British and U.S. registry gathered in Halifax to be part of a convoy to cross the Atlantic Ocean while evading German U-boats. The HMS High Flyer, leader of the convoy, was the only one to try to avert the disaster, but did not reach the stricken ships in time. The massive explosion killed nearly 1,600 people, injured about 8,000 and wrecked a good part of the town.

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On this day in 1865, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle carried a commentary on the just-ratified 13th Amendment that emancipated the black slaves (see below). Although there was no front-page story about the 13th amendment’s passage, the Eagle’s cover during that period ran classified ads and notices. The commentary addressed mostly President Andrew Johnson’s stance toward neutrality as a means to reunite the South with the rest of the United States and discussed his interpretation and use of the Constitution to achieve his goal.

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On this day in 1943, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle front page reported that the “Big Three” of allied nations — the United States, Great Britain and Russia — convened in Tehran, Iran, to discuss strategy on several fronts to defeat Nazi Germany. U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Russian premier Joseph Stalin, after more than 100 hours, mapped out a peace plan “for many generations.”

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NOTABLE PEOPLE born on this day include New York Gov. ANDREW CUOMO, who was born in 1957; singer MACY GRAY, who was born in 1969; football player JOHNNY MANZIEL, who was born in 1992; actor JAMES NAUGHTON, who was born in 1945; founder of Craigslist CRAIG NEWMARK, who was born in 1952; actress SARAH RAFFERTY, who was born in 1972; actress JANINE TURNER, who was born in 1962; actress JoBETH WILLIAMS, who was born in 1953; and comedian STEVEN WRIGHT, who was born in 1955.

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THE 13TH AMENDMENT TO THE U.S. CONSTITUTION RATIFIED ON THIS DAY IN 1865. The amendment abolished slavery in the U.S., stating, “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, save as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”

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ALFRED EISENSTAEDT WAS BORN ON THIS DAY IN 1898. One of the greatest photojournalists in U.S. history, he is best known for his 86 photos that were used on the covers of Life magazine, including the iconic image of a sailor kissing a nurse in Times Square at the end of World War II. He died in 1995 in Massachusetts.

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THE ALTAMONT CONCERT WAS HELD ON THIS DAY IN 1969. The free concert that featured performances by acts like The Rolling Stones, Jefferson Airplane, and Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, turned into a tragedy. The concert for 300,000 fans was marred by overcrowding, drug overdoses and the fatal stabbing of a spectator by a member of the Hell’s Angels motorcycle gang, who had been hired as security guards for the event. It was held at the Altamont Speedway in Livermore, California.

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IRA GERSHWIN WAS BORN ON THIS DAY IN 1896. The New York-born Pulitzer Prize-winning American lyricist and author is best known for his collaboration with his brother George and other composers to create such Broadway successes as “Lady Be Good,” “Funny Face,” and “Strike Up the Band.” He died in Beverly Hills in 1983.

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TODAY IS NATIONAL MINER’S DAY. It was established in appreciation, honor and remembrance of the accomplishments and sacrifices of miners. It is a day to provide a sober reminder of the risks that miners are routinely exposed to in their work and to set aside some time on this day for quiet contemplation of those brave miners who have perished in our mines. A National Miner’s Day resolution passed in the U.S. Senate on Dec 3, 2009.

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JEAN EUGÈNE ROBERT-HOUDIN WAS BORN ON THIS DAY IN 1805. The French magician was the founder of modern magic and was the first to use electricity in his illusions. Robert-Houdin also popularized wearing evening attire (instead of wizard’s robes) onstage. He inspired scores of younger magicians, including Harry Houdini, whose stage name saluted Robert-Houdin’s name. He died in France in 1871.

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Special thanks to “Chase’s Calendar of Events” and Brooklyn Public Library.

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“Better a man honor his profession than be honored by it.” — magician Jean Eugene Robert-Houdin, who was born on this day in 1805


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