July 31: ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

July 31, 2022 Brooklyn Eagle History
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ON THIS DAY IN 1857, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle reported, “Two young sharks, one measuring 8 1-2 and the other 7 1-2 feet long, were captured in the East River, near Fulton ferry slip, about 5 o’clock yesterday afternoon. They were soon dragged ashore and dressed, and today they will probably be sold as specimens of the delicate fish of the season. Boys who bathe near the city should keep a sharp look out for these big-mouthed monsters. This morning two more sharks were caught near the same place, one of which measured ten feet long.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1919, the Eagle reported, “WASHINGTON — It was announced today that President Wilson is taking a deep interest in the cost of living problem, but there was no suggestion that the chief executive has arrived at any plan for meeting the situation. Consideration of the question was urged upon him strongly yesterday by President Stone of the Locomotive Engineers Brotherhood. That the administration will give some practical attention to the matter is assured, but what form it will take remains to be developed. Not only the president but Congress is coming to realize that the living cost problem is rapidly reaching a point where it will completely overshadow in importance every other issue before the country, not excepting the peace treaty. Yet neither the president nor Congress is able to see a solution. Statesmen here frankly confess that it is the most difficult and troublesome question they have confronted in years and that they have no panacea for it … The living cost problem is chiefly associated in the public mind with the prices of food, but that is only a part of it. Government officials realize that the price of all other necessities such as clothing, shoes, household utensils, rents and the like, plays a large part in it and that the mere cheapening of food, if any way is discovered to do that, will meet only a fraction of the situation.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1941, the Eagle reported, “Ten thousand gasoline station workers in the metropolitan area will lose their jobs and gasoline prices immediately will go up one cent a gallon as a result of the announcement by Secretary Ickes that gasoline stations on the eastern seaboard will close at night in a fuel curtailment drive to begin Sunday, Louis Kimmel, business director of the Gasoline Merchants Association of Brooklyn and Queens, stated today. Mr. Kimmel, whose group has a membership of 1,800 gasoline dealers in Brooklyn and 1,600 in Queens, said that ‘you can figure that for every gas station one man will lose his job.’ He said there were 10,000 stations in the metropolitan area. He stated the announcement came as a ‘stunning’ surprise for it had been agreed the night closing of gasoline stations from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. would not go into effect until after Labor Day. Mr. Kimmel said that the gasoline men could not make up in the daytime the business loss they face at night because the fuel curtailment program provides for rationing cards to be issued. He said the change in the date came about as the result of an agreement between the dealers and Secretary Ickes. While the original date set in a recent conference with Ickes was the day after Labor Day, it was agreed that the date could be changed in the event of an emergency. ‘Apparently Ickes believes the emergency is at hand,’ Mr. Kimmel said.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1950, the Eagle reported, “TAIPEI, FORMOSA (U.P.) — Gen. Douglas MacArthur flew to Taipei today and immediately began talks with Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek on the defense of Formosa against invasion by the Chinese Communists. MacArthur came here with his top aides in his capacity as commander in chief of American forces in the Far East. His arrival stirred speculation that the United States plans to play a bigger role in the defense of the little that remains of Nationalist China. The U.S. 7th Fleet already is patrolling Formosan waters under orders from President Truman to prevent a Red invasion of the island. Chiang on several occasions has expressed willingness to place his forces under MacArthur’s command.”

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Wesley Snipes
Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP
Dean Cain
Willy Sanjuan/Invision/AP

NOTABLE PEOPLE BORN ON THIS DAY include “Knots Landing” star Don Murray, who was born in 1929; “The Bold and the Beautiful” star Susan Flannery, who was born in 1939; “Doctor Zhivago” star Geraldine Chaplin, who was born in 1944; former Paramount Pictures CEO Sherry Lansing, who was born in 1944; “The Terminator” star Michael Biehn, who was born in 1952; lawyer and media personality Ron Kuby, who was born in 1956; Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, who was born in 1958; jazz guitarist Stanley Jordan, who was born in 1959; “Blade” star Wesley Snipes, who was born in 1962; “Harry Potter” author J.K. Rowling, who was born in 1965; “Lois & Clark” star Dean Cain, who was born in 1966; Pro Football Hall of Famer Jonathan Ogden, who was born in 1974; and “Pitch Perfect” star Alexis Knapp, who was born in 1989.

J.K. Rowling
Evan Agostini/Invision/AP

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A NEW CREATION: The U.S. Patent Office opened on this day in 1790. The first patent was issued to Samuel Hopkins of Vermont for a new method of making pearl ash and potash. It was signed by George Washington and Thomas Jefferson.

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ECONOMY CLASS: Milton Friedman was born in Brooklyn on this day in 1912. The Nobel Prize-winning economist and author was a member of the Chicago school of economic thought, which advanced influential free-market theories. He died in 2006.

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

 

Quotable:

“Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program.”

— economist Milton Friedman, who was born on this day in 1912


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