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June 17: ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

June 17, 2021 Brooklyn Eagle History
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ON THIS DAY IN 1925, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle reported, “The hands of the old clock on the City Hall building are stopped. They came to rest at three minutes to 12 yesterday noon. By a coincidence, Chairman John H. Delaney of Mayor [John F.] Hylan’s Board of Transportation entered the crowded Board of Estimate room at that exact moment. Heated discussion over the Brooklyn subway routes followed. ‘Mayor Hylan and the clock went out of action together,’ one of the City Hall attaches declared today. ‘The death knell of Hylan’s third term ambitions were sounded at yesterday’s hearings. For him, as for the old clock, it is all over.’ Today there was not a sign of activity in the mayor’s office in the City Hall.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1937, an Eagle editorial said, “The present Senate struggle over court packing is just a fight to preserve the Democratic formula, just a check-rein on Mr. Roosevelt. For nearly all practical purposes, he now has control of the court. He had it all this session, when his legal viewpoint was upheld in every instance. This control will be strengthened increasingly from now on. This session it was five to four, next session it will be six to three, unless conservative justices die, in which case it could be anywhere from seven to two up to nine to zero, even if Mr. R. is defeated in the Senate. Thus, as far as the individual citizen is concerned with centralization of federal authority, the fight is already over. The only restraint on Mr. Roosevelt to be expected from the court in the future will be toward making him work within a liberal Democratic formula.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1948, the Eagle reported, “TEL AVIV (U.P.) — Count Folke Bernadotte was due in Tel Aviv today to discuss prospects for a permanent peace in Palestine with Israeli Foreign Minister Moshe Shertok. Count Bernadotte ended two days of discussions with Arab leaders in Cairo yesterday. He announced that the Arab states would send four representatives to Rhodes to join in permanent peace talks there. Arab leaders, however, said there could be no settlement of the Palestine issue that recognized the existence of a Jewish state in the Middle East. The Jews will talk on no other basis. United Nations observers prevented another outbreak in Palestine by obtaining an agreement on disposition of two British military camps at Tirah, south of Haifa. Jews charged the British intended to turn the camps over to the Arabs after the British departure, scheduled for late next week.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1953, the Eagle reported, “BERLIN (U.P.) — The Russian Army clamped martial law on East Berlin today as mobs of more than 100,000 angry East Germans defied the Communist regime and battled police in the streets in a bloody revolt. Soviet tanks and troops fired above the heads of the rioters with machine guns and rifles and Red East Berlin police fired directly at the demonstrators. One 27-year-old German was crushed beneath the tracks of a Soviet tank. At least one demonstrator was wounded by the gunfire of East Berlin police. Many persons were felled as Communist police clubbed them in an attempt to turn back the rioting mobs, who set police kiosks ablaze, ripped down the Communist Red banner, smashed windows of the East German government building and tore up pictures of German Red leaders. Soviet authorities ordered a strict 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew. Reports from the site where police fired said one or more persons were injured there and at Postdamer Platz, the ‘Times Square’ of Berlin, where other shots were fired. The proclamation of martial law was broadcast over Soviet-run Radio Berlin. It said that, effective as of 1 p.m., gatherings of more than three persons was prohibited.”

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Barry Manilow
Matthew Becker/Wikimedia Commons
Kendrick Lamar
flickr.com/Wikimedia Commons

NOTABLE PEOPLE BORN ON THIS DAY include former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, who was born in 1943; “Copacabana” singer Barry Manilow, who was born in Brooklyn on this day in 1943; author and commentator Linda Chavez, who was born in 1947; Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Gregg Rolie (Santana/Journey), who was born in 1947; former Cincinnati Reds star Dave Concepcion, who was born in 1948; former “Saturday Night Live” star Joe Piscopo, who was born in 1951; former Islanders general manager Mike Milbury, who was born in 1952; Dead Kennedys singer Jello Biafra, who was born in 1958; “As Good as it Gets” star Greg Kinnear, who was born in 1963; fashion designer Tory Burch, who was born in 1966; former “Saturday Night Live” star Will Forte, who was born in 1970; tennis superstar Venus Williams, who was born in 1980; and rapper Kendrick Lamar, who was born in 1987.

Tory Burch
Alms1119/Wikimedia Commons

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UPHILL CLIMB: The Battle of Bunker Hill was fought on this day in 1775. This early battle of the American Revolution, fought near Charleston, Mass., was a costly victory for the British, who had more than 1,000 men killed or wounded, while the colonists had 450 killed or wounded. Famously, the order was given, “Don’t fire until you see the whites of their eyes.”

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THE TIDE TURNS: South Africa repealed its last apartheid law on this day in 1991. The parliament repealed the Population Registration Act, removing the law that was the foundation of apartheid. First enacted in 1950, the law required the classification by race of all South Africans at birth. It established four compulsory racial categories: white, mixed race, Asian and black. Although this marked the removal of the last of the apartheid laws, blacks in South Africa still could not vote.

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

Quotable:

“Misfits aren’t misfits among other misfits.”
— Barry Manilow, who was born in Brooklyn on this day in 1943


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