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MILESTONES: July 17, birthdays for Luke Bryan, Jeremih, David Hasselhoff

July 17, 2018 Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Luke Bryan. Photo by Laura Roberts/Invision/AP
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Greetings, Brooklyn.  Today is the 198th day of the year.

On this day in 1885, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle reported, “The Brooklyn eel is a fish much sought after and seldom sought in vain … He does not affect rapid water, but loves the calm, still, muddy depths of the slip or dock. He is the only fish that views with calm indifference the refuse of the Williamsburgh oil works, and even gas tar has no terrors for him. The eel has made up his mind to live on the Brooklyn shore and is not to be intimidated by anything the sewers cast forth. The Brooklyn eel, especially when nourished in the vicinity of a grain elevator, grows to be of great size, and many are caught as long as a man’s arm.”

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On this day in 1851, the Eagle reported, “George Gelston of Fort Hamilton caught a shark in the Narrows day before yesterday, measuring between seven and 8 feet in length. He was fishing with a hook baited with a small fish when the shark snapped it, and the hook and line proved strong enough to bring him alongside the boat, where he was soon dispatched.”

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On this day in 1897, the Eagle reported, “The United States cruiser Brooklyn reached her anchorage off Tompkinsville, Staten Island, about 11:30 this morning. The Brooklyn left New York on June 3 for England to take part in the queen’s jubilee, arriving at Southampton on the morning of June 14. The appearance of the Brooklyn in the great naval parade elicited most favorable comment from those who saw the grand demonstration … The Brooklyn sailed from Southampton on July 6, and her time to New York, eleven days, was the same as that made on her voyage from New York to Southampton.”

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On this day in 1910, the Eagle reported, “Fire, supposed to have been caused by a careless longshoreman smoking on Pier 14, at the foot of Vesey Street, Manhattan, resulted in a property loss estimated at over a million dollars yesterday afternoon. There was a complete tieup of traffic in that part of the city, and for a time it looked as though blaze would spread up the North River side of Manhattan, as a strong south wind was blowing at the time … There were many rescues, many injured, and some of the workers on the docks may have lost their lives. Possible fatalities will not be known until there is a systematic search made of the ruined piers today.”

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On this day in 1915, it was reported, “Dr. St. Clair McKelway, editor-in-chief of the Eagle for the past 31 years and chancellor of the University of the State of New York, died at 3 o’clock yesterday afternoon at his home, 21 Monroe Place. Death was caused by arterio-sclerosis. Arrangements have been made to hold the funeral services in the Church of the Holy Trinity, on Montague Street … The Reverend John Howard Melish, the rector of the church, will officiate … A severe attack of bronchial trouble last spring left Dr. McKelway in a weakened condition. It did not long confine him to the house, however, and he came to the Eagle office as often as his strength would permit. He was at his desk for the last time just five weeks ago.”

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On this day in 1934, the Eagle reported, “The hot weather has played havoc with the shellfish market. Soft shell crabs have taken a big jump and are quoted at $2 a dozen wholesale. At retail the price varies with the locality and has caused many local markets to forego the crabs entirely. Shrimp has also gone up in the air, and, if fresh, are selling at 40 cents a pound, and, if chilled, 25 cents a pound. Crab meat of the best grade is 65 cents a pound. Lobsters are way beyond the purse of the average housewife in depression times and are kept in comparatively few markets.”

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On this day in 1941, the Eagle reported, “One of the largest crowds of the season will sit in tonight to see if southpaw Al Smith can stop the great Joe DiMaggio, whose continuous hitting streak reached the 56-game mark yesterday.”

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NOTABLE PEOPLE born on this day include actress LUCIE ARNAZ, who was born in 1951; country singer LUKE BRYAN, who was born in 1976; singer and actress DIAHANN CARROLL, who was born in 1935; actor JASON CLARKE, who was born in 1969; actor DAVID HASSELHOFF, who was born in 1952; singer JEREMIH, who was born in 1987; actor DONALD SUTHERLAND, who was born in 1935; opera singer DAWN UPSHAW, who was born in 1960; and actor ALEX WINTER, who was born in 1965.

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ERLE STANLEY GARDNER WAS BORN ON THIS DAY IN 1889. The American detective fiction author is best remembered for his smash-hit series featuring lawyer-detective Perry Mason, who debuted in “The Case of the Velvet Claws” in 1933. Mason is probably the most famous lawyer in popular culture: he was featured in 82 novels as well as on TV and film. At the height of their popularity, Mason novels sold 20,000 copies a day. Gardner died in California in 1970.

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DISNEYLAND OPENED ON THIS DAY IN 1955. The country’s first theme park debuted in Anaheim, California.

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JOHN JACOB ASTOR WAS BORN ON THIS DAY IN 1763. As the founder of what is considered the first American business monopoly — the American Fur Company — Astor broke into the fur trade in 1786 by starting a fur-goods store in New York City. He made considerable transactions in Canada and the Great Lakes region as well as China, through special permission from the British East India Company. At the time of his death in 1848 in New York, he was the wealthiest person in the United States.

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THE SPANISH CIVIL WAR BEGAN ON THIS DAY IN 1936. Gen. Francisco Franco led an uprising of army troops based in North Africa against the elected government of the Spanish Republic. Spain was quickly divided into a Nationalist and a Republican zone, with Franco’s nationalists drawing support from fascist Italy and Nazi Germany. In 1939, the nationalists won a complete victory when they entered Madrid. Franco ruled as dictator in Spain until his death in 1975.

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THE MINIMUM LEGAL DRINKING AGE WAS CHANGED TO 21 ON THIS DAY IN 1984. Mothers Against Drunk Driving helped pass the 21 Minimum Legal Drinking Age law because it makes sense and saves lives. President Ronald Reagan signed federal legislation making it illegal for anyone under 21 to purchase or publicly possess alcohol. An estimated 1,000 lives are saved each year as a result.

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

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“Could I begin life again, knowing what I now know, and had money to invest, I would buy every foot of land on the Island of Manhattan.” — John Jacob Astor, who was born on this day in 1763

 


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