Brooklyn Boro

August 22: ON THIS DAY in 1944, American tank troops sweep down the Seine

August 22, 2019 Brooklyn Eagle History

ON THIS DAY IN 1911, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle reported, “’La Jaconde,’ the masterpiece of Leonardo da Vinci, has disappeared from the Salon Carre of the Louvre, where it occupied the place of honor. The great museum has been searched from cellars to attics in vain … Just a year and a month ago, the Cri de Paris announced that ‘La Jaconde’ had been stolen from the gallery of the Louvre one night in June through the complicity of an official of the museum and that a copy had been substituted in the frame for the original, which, the paper asserted, had been taken to New York and sold to an American collector. This report was repeatedly denied later.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1940, Eagle sports columnist Ed Hughes wrote, “Ernest Lawrence Thayer, popularly accredited with the authorship of ‘Casey at the Bat,’ is dead. I say popularly accredited because, oddly enough, dozens of others laid claim to the creation of the verse. In fact, indisputable proof of its authorship is still awaited, though not as feverishly as 30 years ago. Then, the Bacon-Shakespeare controversy was considered a trifling matter. Whether or not Dr. Cook or Peary discovered the North Pole was considered second-rate curiosity. The burning question was: Who wrote ‘Casey at the Bat?’”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1944, the Eagle reported, “Supreme Headquarters, A.E.F., Aug. 22 (UP) — American tank troops swept down the Seine River for the Channel ports today in a great new offensive that closed to a bare 60 miles the last escape corridor for the fleeing German 7th Army in Normandy, while other Yank columns were reported halfway around Paris in a lightning thrust to the River Marne. A huge noose was tightening swiftly around tens of thousands of battle-wearied Nazis caught south of the Seine as the Americans lashed out for the Channel and veteran Canadian troops drove eastward along the Norman coast to within 12 miles of the Seine estuary. Between the two converging armies the remnants of the German army were in headlong flight toward the handful of temporary pontoon bridges thrown across the Seine … At the same time, other American units were across the river in force at Mantes and Vernon, 13 miles to the north, and fanning out downstream toward the channel coast and upriver toward Paris … Meanwhile, the battle of Paris appeared to be nearing a showdown as American armor pressed in on the city from three sides against slightly stiffening enemy resistance.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1953, the Eagle reported, “Tehran  (UP) — Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlevi today return in triumph to his capital to receive a hysterical and weeping welcome from his jubilant subjects. Overjoyed Iranians wept, shouted, flung themselves to the ground and slaughtered whole herds of sheep in a wild orgy of welcome. The 33-year-old ruler, wearing a trim military uniform and gold-braided cap, flew his own twin-engined plane from Baghdad, Iraq … One of the ruler’s first actions upon arriving was to ask officials about the condition of former Premier Mohammed Mossadegh, whose more than two years of iron-handed rule of Iran was ended by Royalist forces in Wednesday’s bloody fighting. Reza Pahlevi told new Premier Gen. Fazollah Zahedi he hoped the aged Mossadegh was being kept comfortable and his health was good.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1969, a few days after the end of the Woodstock Festival in upstate New York, Brooklyn Spectator columnist “Uncle Walt” wrote, “Couldn’t help thinking the other day, it’s bad enough to look at even one of those hippies —  or hippie types. Can you imagine 400,000 of them — all at one time?? It is frightening though to think that so many of our young people are like that. They’re escapists, in our book. But there seems to be enough of them to start another political party. Can you imagine them running the country? We blame our involvement in the Vietnam War for a lot of these conditions. The only hope is that once that thing is settled and out of the way, a lot of these other conditions will fade away and die.”

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