Brooklyn Boro

December 16: ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

December 16, 2021 Brooklyn Eagle History
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ON THIS DAY IN 1910, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle reported, “A rangy white mule with a gleam of wickedness in its eye made up its mind to have some fun with Brooklyn’s street car system yesterday afternoon, and for a good half hour it had the cars of the Fulton street line strung out behind it for a long distance while passengers stuck their heads out of the windows and cussed that mule from Alpha to Omega and back again. This morning the last chapter of the story of the mule was written in New Jersey avenue police court where John Egan, a disgusted driver, was arraigned for whaling the mule with an iron bar. The mule didn’t mind apparently, but Mr. Egan had to leave $10 with the court clerk before he was free to depart.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1925, the Eagle reported, “‘More electricity is used in the metropolitan area of New York City than in all England,’ was the statement of Charles L. Harold, general sales agent of the Brooklyn Edison Company, made in an address at the monthly social meeting of the Prospect Club in the home of Mrs. Edward M. Kaiser, 856 Carroll St., yesterday afternoon. Mr. Harold traced the origin of electricity from the sun to coal, oil and water, which are the immediate sources. In speaking of the great amount of electrical power used in Brooklyn, he explained to the audience of women that the peak of demand is during the four winter months, November, December, January and February, between 4:30 and 9:30 o’clock. This is due to the early dusk. To meet this need, a new 80,000-kilowatt generator with a capacity of more than 400,000 horsepower is being built on Hudson ave., he said.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1933, the Eagle reported, “Mayor-elect Fiorello H. LaGuardia today announced two more cabinet appointments. They were: Police Commissioner — Maj. Gen. John F. O’Ryan, Fire Commissioner — Fire Chief John J. McElligott. LaGuardia said he would abolish the positions of deputy fire commissioner and fire chief and that McElligott will have the functions of these two offices as well as his own. The salaries of police and fire commissioners are $13,390 a year. Elimination of the position of deputy fire commissioner puts out of office Edward J. Kenny of 35 Prospect Park West, the millionaire contractor and friend of Alfred E. Smith, long associated with the fire department and a frequent contributor to its welfare fund. O’Ryan, an independent Democrat, stepped aside last fall to allow the harmonious nomination of LaGuardia for mayor by the committee composed of Republicans and Independents. He lives in Manhattan. McElligott, who lives at 2354 Davidson Ave., the Bronx, has never been in politics. He joined the Fire Department in 1905 when he was 23 and has worked his way up.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1962, the Eagle reported, “WASHINGTON (UPI) — Mariner 2 sailed into eternity today continuing to score successes after its historic rendezvous with the mystery planet Venus. While scientists started to analyze the data which has given man his first exciting close-up look at the planet, the space craft whirled on towards its perpetual orbit of the Sun. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration said that Mariner on Saturday had received and acted upon commands which were sent from the Goldstone Tracking Station in California. Now it is back to its previous task of accumulating information on the mysteries of outer space. At 11 a.m. EST, NASA said, Mariner was 253,832 miles from Venus, 36.6 million miles from the Earth, and 66.6 million miles from the Sun. Mariner reached its closest point to Venus Friday at about 10 seconds before 3 p.m. EST. Scientists said that at that time it was 21,500 to 21,600 miles from Venus. The two key instruments abord the craft began scanning Venus at 1:55 p.m. and continued for the scheduled 42 minutes. Their reports were received at Goldstone and relayed via Pasadena to Washington, where the signals were played on a loudspeaker at a televised news conference.”

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Krysten Ritter
Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP
Benjamin Bratt
Evan Agostini/Invision/AP

NOTABLE PEOPLE BORN ON THIS DAY include “Battlestar Galactica” star Terry Carter, who was born in Brooklyn in 1928; actress and author Joyce Bulifant, who was born in 1937; “Face to Face” star Liv Ullmann, who was born in 1938; journalist Lesley Stahl, who was born in 1941; Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Tony Hicks (The Hollies), who was born in 1945; “The Walking Dead” star Xander Berkeley, who was born in 1955; former N.Y. Giants center Bart Oates, who was born in 1958; former NFL tackle William “Refrigerator” Perry, who was born in 1962; “Law & Order” star Benjamin Bratt, who was born in 1963; “Ford v Ferrari” director James Mangold, who was born in 1963; “Jessica Jones” star Krysten Ritter, who was born in 1981; former N.Y Giants defensive back Antre Rolle, who was born in 1982; and “The Chronicles of Narnia” star Anna Popplewell, who was born in 1988.

Anna Popplewell
Jon Furniss/Invision/AP

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HARBORING A GRUDGE: The Boston Tea Party took place on this day in 1773 when the Sons of Liberty boarded three British vessels at anchor at Griffin’s Wharf in Boston Harbor. The contents of 342 chests of tea — the entire East India Company shipment — were dumped into the harbor as a protest by the American colonists against the Tea Act of 1773.

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JUST THE FACTS: “Dragnet” premiered on this day in 1951. The famous crime show stressed authenticity, and episodes were supposedly based on real cases. It starred Jack Webb as stoic and determined Sgt. Joe Friday, a man whose life was investigative police work and who was recognized by his recurring line, “Just the facts, ma’am.” The show is also known for its theme music and its narrative epilogue describing the fate of the bad guys.

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

 

Quotable:

“Selfishness must always be forgiven you know, because there is no hope of a cure.”

— novelist Jane Austen, who was born on this day in 1775


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