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MILESTONES: June 20, birthdays for Abby Wambach, Lionel Richie, Nicole Kidman

June 20, 2018 Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Abby Wambach. Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP
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Greetings, Brooklyn.  Today is the 170th day of the year.

On this day in 1915, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle published this advertisement on its front page: “Another Subway For Brooklyn. Better Service For This Borough. Yesterday the vision became a fact. The Fourth Avenue Subway was officially opened, bringing South Brooklyn, Bay Ridge, Fort Hamilton, Bath Beach and Coney Island in closer touch with the heart of Brooklyn. The opening of the Subway brings the furthermost points within 22 minutes of the business district of this borough. Brooklyn’s progress points to a wonderful future. Brooklyn is the City of Homes and Abraham and Straus is the Home Store of Brooklyn. When this store started in 1865, Brooklyn had a population of approximately 300,000 — today, with a total of nearly 2,000,000, Brooklyn’s Greatest Store stands supreme, with the Greatest Assortments, the Best Service and the Lowest Prices.”

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On this day in 1899, the Eagle reported, “South Hadley, Mass., June 20 — Honors were heaped upon this little college town today and incidentally upon President McKinley. It was commencement day for the class of ’99 of Mount Holyoke College and as guests of the occasion came President William McKinley, whose niece, Miss Grace McKinley, was among the graduates, and Mrs. McKinley … During the day it was announced that the degree of doctor of civil laws had been conferred upon the president.”

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On this day in 1907, the Eagle reported, “Sheepshead Bay Race Track, June 20 — Was there any one left in town? Suburban Day at this track and the crowd that came to see the $20,000 race run made the question a natural one, and easily answered. Everyone was here. True, all had not arrived up to 2 o’clock, for at that time there were steady streams of people pouring into the park-like track, but there were more than 20,000 in field and grandstand and clubhouse inclosure at that time … Sheepshead has been called the most beautiful course in America, and justly so … The change from the narrow, cramped course at Gravesend was welcome, and as there were not the eye-straining distances of Belmont Park to overcome, the crowd was more than pleased.”

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On this day in 1910, the Eagle reported, “Although the wedding of Theodore Roosevelt Jr., and Miss Eleanor Butler Alexander, at the Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church at 4 o’clock this afternoon will be a society event of great importance, it is probable that the bride and bridegroom will be somewhat overshadowed personally by Theodore Roosevelt, the returned ex-president, who was greeted by 500,000 people on his return to this country Saturday, and who will attend the marriage of his son. There will be a picturesque feature to the wedding, it was learned this afternoon. Colonel Roosevelt has extended an invitation to the Rough Riders who welcomed him home on Saturday to attend the ceremony, and they will be present.”

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On this day in 1950, the Eagle reported, “Ed McIlvenny, star halfback of the Philadelphia Nationals who flew out yesterday with the U.S. World Cup team to Brazil, is being trailed by the visiting Manchester United. It is also said that Charlton Athletic of London will put in a strong competitive bidding to get his signature to a contract.”

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On this day in 1953, the Eagle reported, “Ossining, N.Y., June 20 — Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, defiant to the last, paid with their lives for betraying their native land. Executioner Joseph Francel sent 16,000 volts of electricity through their bodies shortly before sundown last night. Julius, the weaker, went first and withered under three shocks of 2,000 volts each. It took five jolts to kill his wife. Thus was sealed for eternity the secrets of a Soviet spy ring which many experts fear may still be operating in this country. The Rosenbergs refused to the end to trade the secrets for their life … The Rosenbergs were the first American civilians to die for spying. They were accused of sending a rough sketch of the atomic bomb to Russia. ‘Plain, deliberate, contemplated murder is dwarfed in magnitude by comparison with the crime you have committed,’ Judge Irving Kaufman said in sentencing them on April 5, 1951. ‘Millions … may pay the price of your treason.’”

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NOTABLE PEOPLE born on this day include actor DANNY AIELLO JR., who was born in 1933; Oscar Award-winning actress and theatrical director OLYMPIA DUKAKIS, who was born in 1931; actor JOHN GOODMAN, who was born in 1952; Oscar Award-winning actress NICOLE KIDMAN, who was born in 1967; soccer player FRANK LAMPARD, who was born in 1978; Oscar Award-winning actor MARTIN LANDAU, who was born in Brooklyn in 1931; actor MICHAEL LANDON JR., who was born in 1964; singer and Tony Award-winning composer CYNDI LAUPER, who was born in Brooklyn in 1953; Tony Award-winning actor JOHN MAHONEY, who was born in 1940; former U.S. Secretary of Veterans Affairs ROBERT McDONALD, who was born in 1953; singer ANNE MURRAY, who was born in 1945; singer and songwriter LIONEL RICHIE, who was born in 1949; director and screenwriter ROBERT RODRIGUEZ, who was born in 1968; actor JAMES TOLKAN, who was born in 1931; handyman and TV personality BOB VILA, who was born in 1946; soccer player ABBY WAMBACH, who was born in 1980; pianist ANDRE WATTS, who was born in 1946; and singer BRIAN WILSON, who was born in 1942.

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LILLIAN HELLMAN WAS BORN ON THIS DAY IN 1905. One of the 20th century’s important playwrights, she authored such works as “The Children’s Hour,” “The Little Foxes” and “Toys in the Attic.” Hellman was one of many artists blacklisted by Hollywood in the 1950s. She died in Massachusetts in 1984.

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TODAY IS THE ANNIVERSARY OF THE FIRST BALLOON HONEYMOON. In 1909, Roger Burnham and Eleanor Waring embarked on the first balloon honeymoon. They began their trip in Cape Cod, Massachusetts and landed in an orchard in Holbrook.

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AUDIE MURPHY WAS BORN ON THIS DAY IN 1924. Murphy was the most decorated soldier in World War II and later became an actor in western and war movies. He died in 1971 in a plane crash near Roanoke, Virginia.

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TODAY IS THE ANNIVERSARY OF THE LIZZIE BORDEN VERDICT. Spectators at her 1893 trial cheered when the “not guilty” verdict was read by the jury foreman in the murder trial of Lizzie Borden. She had been accused of and tried for the hacking deaths of her father and stepmother in their Fall River, Massachusetts home in 1892.

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“JAWS” PREMIERED ON THIS DAY IN 1975. With its tagline “Don’t go in the water” and its ominous cello music, the Steven Spielberg-directed thriller shocked audiences. Adapted from a Peter Benchley bestseller, “Jaws” showed a great white shark preying on the beachgoers of a New England town. It won Oscars for best editing, best sound and best original score and was a blockbuster success.

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THE FIRST DOCTOR OF SCIENCE DEGREE WAS EARNED BY A WOMAN ON THIS DAY IN 1895. Caroline Willard Baldwin became the first woman to earn a doctor of science degree. She received it from Cornell University.

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

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“It is best to act with confidence, no matter how little right you have to it.” — playwright Lillian Hellman, who was born on this day in 1905

 


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