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December 13: ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

December 13, 2021 Brooklyn Eagle History
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ON THIS DAY IN 1936, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle reported, “LONDON (U.P.) — George VI was proclaimed King today and plunged with characteristic industry into the affairs of state, while his brother, Prince Edward, landed in France, a voluntary exile for ‘the woman I love.’ The King’s first act was to inform an accession meeting of the privy council that he intended to take care of his brother’s status by creating Edward the Duke of Windsor, a new title derived from the house name of the royal family. Prince Edward will assume the title as soon as letters patent are issued. If he marries Mrs. Wallis Simpson, for whom he gave up the throne, she will become the Duchess of Windsor. Prince Edward, who was en route tonight to a retreat in Switzerland, will be known as His Royal Highness the Duke of Windsor. It was an eventful day in London, one of glamour, Medieval pageantry and demonstrations of loyalty by the people — tinged with sorrow over the plight of Edward. The accession council met at St. James’ Place at 11 a.m. with King George VI present. His majesty took the accession oath, approved the privy council’s proclamation of his ascent to the throne, and the privy councilors swore allegiance to him.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1945, the Eagle reported, “That Lone Ranger cowboy suit with the imitation cowhide on the chaps may be what Junior wants for Christmas, but the New York Safety Council has warned Brooklyn mothers ‘not to kill children with kindness.’ Last year such gifts accounted for the deaths of three children and serious burns to eight more, according to Mrs. Grace Allen Bangs, co-chairman of the Home Safety Committee of the council. ‘The actual accident toll from Christmas gifts is greater than any accident records can show because many accidents which happen long after the holiday are due directly to a careless choice of Christmas gifts,’ Mrs. Bangs said. She declared that the fond bachelor uncle whose knowledge of children is very limited should be told that toys for very small tots should be large enough so that they cannot be swallowed. ‘Glass toys for small children are unwise, too,’ she said, ‘and stuffed dolls and animals should have embroidered eyes rather than shoe-button affairs that can be plucked out and swallowed. A train or other electrical toy should have the seal of approval of the Underwriters Laboratories to show that it is properly constructed against fire hazard and electric shock.’”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1946, the Eagle reported, “The United Nations General Assembly plans to put its final stamp of approval today on the choice of midtown Manhattan for permanent U.N. headquarters. The Assembly had before it an overwhelming recommendation of the U.N. Headquarters Committee in favor of building a skyscraper world capital in midtown Manhattan. Thirty-three nations voted to accept the offer of John. D. Rockefeller Jr. of land worth $8,500,000 along the East River. Seven nations — all of them Moslem nations except Australia — opposed the site. New York must receive a two-thirds majority in Assembly voting. The committee vote was 33 to 7. The Big Five Powers, with the exception of France, which abstained, voted for the Manhattan site. The U.N. secretariat announced that the architect of the skyscraper headquarters probably would be chosen by an international competition. William Zeckendorf, partner in the realty firm that is selling the tract to John D. Rockefeller Jr. for $8,500,000 so he can give it free to the U.N., called the land ‘the most exciting property in New York.’”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1954, the Eagle reported, “‘White Christmas,’ new musical in color, is at the Brooklyn Paramount, where it is starting its first borough run after a highly successful eight-week engagement at Radio City Music Hall. It ranks among the ten biggest money-making pictures ever to be shown at the Music Hall. Opening last Saturday at the Brooklyn Paramount, ‘White Christmas’ will be held over Christmas along with ‘VistaVision Visits Norway,’ a new travel film. ‘White Christmas’ is the first picture in Paramount’s VistaVision, spectacular new wide screen process. The film is in Technicolor, the tints greatly enhanced by the clarity which is one of the effects of the new technique.”

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Taylor Swift
Evan Agostini/Invision/AP
Jamie Foxx
LM Otero/AP

NOTABLE PEOPLE BORN ON THIS DAY include “Mary Poppins” star Dick Van Dyke, who was born in 1925; “That’s Incredible!” host John Davidson, who was born in 1941; “Motor City Madhouse” singer Ted Nugent, who was born in 1949; “Just Shoot Me” star Wendie Malick, who was born in 1950; Pro Football Hall of Famer Richard Dent, who was born in 1960; “Boardwalk Empire” star Steve Buscemi, who was born in Brooklyn in 1957; sportscaster Mike Tirico, who was born in 1966; Oscar-winning actor Jamie Foxx, who was born in 1967; Hockey Hall of Famer Sergei Fedorov, who was born in 1969; Evanescence singer Amy Lee, who was born in 1981; golfer Rickie Fowler, who was born in 1988; and “Willow” singer Taylor Swift, who was born in 1989.

Amy Lee
Robb Cohen/Invision/AP

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COURAGE UNDER FIRE: Alvin C. York was born on this day in 1887. The Tennessee native is one of the most decorated soldiers in U.S. history. York received the Medal of Honor during World War I for charging a German machine gun nest, killing 25 enemy soldiers and capturing 132. He was played by Gary Cooper in “Sergeant York,” the highest-grossing film of 1941. He died in 1964.

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THE FINAL FRONTIER: Apollo 17 astronauts Eugene Cernan and Harrison Schmitt performed a “moonwalk” on this day in 1972. To date, they are the last humans to set foot on the Moon.

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

 

Quotable:

“Everybody can sing. That you do it badly is no reason not to sing.”

— entertainer Dick Van Dyke, who was born on this day in 1925


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