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July 5: ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

July 5, 2022 Brooklyn Eagle History
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ON THIS DAY IN 1903, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle reported, “When Uncle Sam gave West Point by way of a birthday present $5,500,000 to be expended on her buildings and grounds, the old gentleman cannily attached one condition to the gift. Not one cent was to be spent until the whole had been planned. He would tolerate no patchwork. He wanted a military academy plant that the nation could take pride in — not a magnificent building here or there, entirely too fine for its neighbors, or a bit of beautifully developed park, flanked by acres uncared for or neglected because the funds had run out. He figured out that for $5,500,000, West Point could be enlarged and improved to meet all possible requirements both as to buildings and grounds. It was no mere ordinary birthday that West Point was celebrating. It was her centennial.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1935, the Eagle reported, “WASHINGTON (A.P.) — New Deal circles are studying the advisability of broadening the tax-the-wealth program to reach into the middle income brackets as well as the $1,000,000-a-year class. Some legislators and experts are known to feel that if the new taxes were levied only on the very wealthiest persons, the revenue resulting would not live up to expectations. This disclosure came after a White House conference in which plans were laid to push ahead with the tax plan and enact it this session, despite Republican demands that the whole question go over to a special session in the fall. Meanwhile, critics of the plan were giving      an inkling of the arguments they will use when it comes to the debate stage. Senator Metcalf (R., R.I.), in a Fourth of July address, called on the country to ‘register a powerful objection to the levying of confiscatory taxes in order to gain the political support of Socialists and radicals of every stripe.’”

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News for those who live, work and play in Brooklyn and beyond

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ON THIS DAY IN 1947, the Eagle reported, “SEATTLE (U.P.) — Coast Guardsman Frank Ryman, 27, had a picture today snapped from the front porch of his home which authorities hoped would clear up the mystery of the flying saucers. Ryman said an enlargement of the shot made yesterday at the north end of Lake Washington showed a ‘white saucer’ that was neither an airplane, a cloud nor a silver balloon. He promised to release the picture today. Authorities were still skeptical that the mystery missiles were any sort of new aircraft as they checked scores of reports of the fast-moving shiny disks zipping through the sky over a large area of the Northwest yesterday. The pilot and co-pilot of a United Airlines passenger plane said they turned their craft off its course near Boise, Idaho, and chased a ‘strange object’ for 15 miles before it outdistanced them or disintegrated in the dusk. Capt. R.J. Smith and Second Officer R.E. Stevens, both of Seattle, said ‘we can definitely say that what we saw was not smoke, not a cloud, and not another airplane.’ Portland police in two radio cars three miles apart reported seeing a group of strange objects weaving in a ‘playful manner’ 10,000 feet above the ground over the southern suburbs of Portland.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1953, the Eagle reported, “A howling mob of 200 kids swarmed all over a pair of cops making a fireworks raid on a stand in a Red Hook lot yesterday, and they hampered the policemen to such an extent that two fireworks salesmen were able to make good their escape. The raid was staged by Patrolmen James Casey and Thomas O’Hanlon in the lot at President and Van Brunt Sts., where $7,000 in fireworks was seized. In all, eight raids were made in the past two days, and about $30,000 in fireworks was confiscated. Yesterday the two cops tried to stow the seized fireworks in their radio car, but the irate kids stoned the car. The cops turned in a hurry call for reinforcements. Two more radio cars responded and the kids were dispersed. The fireworks were then taken to the Union St. precinct.”

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Shohei Ohtani
Ashley Landis/AP
Edie Falco
Charles Sykes/Invision/AP

NOTABLE PEOPLE BORN ON THIS DAY include Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Robbie Robertson (The Band), who was born in 1943; singer-songwriter Huey Lewis, who was born in 1950; Baseball Hall of Famer Rich “Goose” Gossage, who was born in 1951; former Aerosmith guitarist Jimmy Crespo, who was born in Brooklyn in 1954; Pro Football Hall of Famer James Lofton, who was born in 1956; “Calvin and Hobbes” creator Bill Watterson, who was born in 1958; “Walking in Memphis” singer Marc Cohn, who was born in 1959; “Nobody’s Fool” star Pruitt Taylor Vince, who was born in 1960; “The Sopranos” star Edie Falco, who was born in Brooklyn in 1963; “Law & Order: Criminal Intent” star Kathryn Erbe, who was born in 1965; World Cup-winning soccer player Megan Rapinoe, who was born in 1985; and L.A. Angels star Shohei Ohtani, who was born in 1994.

Robbie Robertson
Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP

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CIRCUS LIFE: P.T. Barnum was born in Connecticut on this day in 1810. He opened Barnum’s American Museum in 1842, promoting unusual acts such as Chang and Eng (the original Siamese twins) and General Tom Thumb. In 1850 he began promoting Jenny Lind, “the Swedish Nightingale,” and parlayed her singing talents into a major financial success. In 1871 “The Greatest Show on Earth” opened in Brooklyn. Barnum merged with his rival J.A. Bailey in 1881 to form the Barnum and Bailey Circus. He died in 1891.

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SKIN IN THE GAME: The bikini was introduced on this day in 1946. The skimpy two-piece bathing suit created by Louis Reard debuted at a fashion show in Paris. It was named after a Pacific atoll where the hydrogen bomb was first tested.

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

 

Quotable:

“Without promotion, something terrible happens … nothing!”

— showman P.T. Barnum, who was born on this day in 1810


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