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April 21: ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

April 21, 2022 Brooklyn Eagle History
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ON THIS DAY IN 1926, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle reported, “LONDON (AP) — The Duke and Duchess of York are the proud possessors of a girl baby. The little Princess made her advent into the world at 2:40 o’clock this morning in the childhood bedroom of the Duchess in the town house of her father, the Earl of Strathmore. The baby is the first child of the Duke and Duchess. The Duke of York is the second son of King George and Queen Mary. The Duchess was formerly Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon. The couple were married in Westminster Abbey, April 4, 1923 … Although it is a somewhat remote contingency, there is a possibility that today’s baby one day may sit on the throne as a British sovereign. Should both the Prince of Wales and the Duke of York die before King George, with neither leaving an heir, the Duke of York’s daughter would stand in the same position with respect to the crown as did Queen Victoria when William IV died … The news of the birth of the Princess was immediately telephoned to the King and Queen at Windsor Castle … A message also was telegraphed to the Prince of Wales, who is on the Continent. He is the eldest uncle of the little Princess and has high regard for the Duchess, whom he calls ‘Queen Elizabeth.’”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1930, the Eagle reported, “WINDSOR, ENGLAND (AP) — A tiny golden-haired girl occupied the British throne without opposition today and for a brief time ruled her native land with charming grace which brought delighted plaudits from her subjects. This day belonged to Princess Elizabeth, daughter of the Duke and Duchess of York and beloved granddaughter of King George and Queen Mary. It was the fourth anniversary of her birth. Bright and early, little ‘Lillybet,’ as she calls herself, seized the scepter, beneath which the gray-haired king-emperor, his queen and all the royal family bowed in pleased submission. At a birthday party in old Windsor Castle there were presents galore, including a mysterious package from Uncle David — the Prince of Wales — sent from the heart of Africa. And in the royal stables, King George had hidden one of the smallest Shetland ponies he could find. So great was the crush around the palace that authorities were forced to close the gates.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1944, the Eagle reported, “LONDON (U.P.) — The German radio said today that the greatest concentration of shipping since the Dunkirk evacuation has been assembled in British waters, presumably for an invasion of western Europe. The Royal Navy is being concentrated in home waters along with units of the American, French and Italian fleets, the broadcast said. ‘Troops are leaving London,’ it added. ‘Every day now, troop trains are leaving London stations taking men to ports.’ Another Berlin broadcast said the Germans across the Channel and North Sea have concluded all ‘preparations to counter the invasion,’ with all defenses ready for the enemy.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1944, the Eagle reported, “Princess Elizabeth observed her 18th birthday in accordance with wartime austerity today by watching the Grenadier Guards, of which she is colonel-in-chief, change guard somewhere in the country. From this day on, should her father die, Elizabeth would become Queen of England. Had this occurred before today, the Duke of Gloucester would have become regent. She was accompanied to the Grenadier Guard encampment by the King and Queen, the Duke of Gloucester, the Princess Royal and Princess Margaret, and received a silk replica of the King’s colors of the First Battalion as a birthday present from the regiment. A number of United States officers were among the small group of guests who witnessed the ceremony and the presentation of the colors. Wearing her favorite hyacinth blue coat with a military-style peaked cap, the Princess came onto the parade ground with the other members of the royal family … The parade was the only ceremonial observance of the Princess’ birthday, although throughout the morning telegrams arrived at the rate of one nearly every two minutes.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1947, the Eagle reported, “CAPETOWN (U.P.) — Princess Elizabeth, heiress presumptive to the British throne, was 21 today, a birthday on which her income automatically went up from $24,000 to $60,000 a year … Reaching this calendar milestone entitles Elizabeth to set up her own household. But friends said she will remain at Buckingham Palace until she marries — and many intimates predict that won’t happen for a long time. Rumors persisted, however, that her engagement to naval Lt. Philip Mountbatten, formerly Prince Philip of Greece, will be announced after her return to Britain May 11. Appropriately enough in this land of diamonds, the Union Government arranged to give Elizabeth a birthday present of 21 specially selected graduated brilliant-cut diamonds, interspersed with baguettes and small brilliants to be strung on a necklace.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1954, the Eagle reported, “COLOMBO, CEYLON (U.P.) — A crowd of 20,000 Singhalese, who learned the words ‘happy birthday, dear Queen’ for the occasion, sang them in a pelting rain today for Queen Elizabeth II on the 28th anniversary of her birth. The words faltered sometimes but the enthusiasm did not, and the singing, which accompanied Ceylon’s greatest military review, ended with an ovation that drowned out the noise of the tropical storm. The Queen received cards from her children, Prince Charles and Princess Anne, and cables of congratulations from the leaders of the world. Elizabeth donned a yellow mackintosh. Prince Philip held a tiny umbrella over her head. She rode erect in the showers that peppered her face while her husband stood soaked and unsheltered in his uniform of a field marshal.”

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Queen Elizabeth II
Matt Dunham/AP
Tony Danza
Mark Von Holden/Invision/AP

NOTABLE PEOPLE BORN ON THIS DAY include Queen Elizabeth II, who was born in 1926; comedy legend Elaine May, who was born in 1932; former New Jersey Gov. Thomas Kean, who was born in 1935; Bronze Star recipient and 1973 American League Rookie of the Year Al Bumbry, who was born in 1947; “Godfather of Punk” Iggy Pop, who was born in 1947; American Theater Hall of Famer Patti LuPone, who was born in 1949; “Taxi” star Tony Danza, who was born in Brooklyn in 1951; Mets World Series hero Jesse Orosco, who was born in 1957; “Groundhog Day” star Andie MacDowell, who was born in 1958; Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Robert Smith (The Cure), who was born in 1959; “Mad TV” star Nicole Sullivan, who was born in 1970; “X-Men” star James McAvoy, who was born in 1979; and broadcaster and former Dallas Cowboys star Tony Romo, who was born in 1980.

Andie MacDowell
Evan Agostini/Invision/AP

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BRIT LIT: Charlotte Bronte was born on this day in 1816. The Yorkshire native published her first novel, “Jane Eyre,” in 1847 under the pen name Currer Bell. It drew on her life experiences and is considered a cornerstone of British literature. Her sisters Emily and Anne were also novelists. Bronte died in 1855.

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CHILD’S PLAY: Today is Kindergarten Day, which recognizes the importance of play, games, and “creative self-activity” in children’s education. It is observed on the anniversary of the birth of Friedrich Froebel (1782), who established the first kindergarten in 1837. German immigrants brought Froebel’s ideas to the U.S. in the 1840s. The first kindergarten in a U.S. public school was started in 1873 in St. Louis, Mo.

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

 

Quotable:

“We should take comfort that while we may have more still to endure, better days will return. We will be with our friends again. We will be with our families again. We will meet again.”
— Queen Elizabeth II, April 5, 2020


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