Brooklyn Boro

December 6: ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

December 6, 2022 Brooklyn Eagle History
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ON THIS DAY IN 1847, a Brooklyn Daily Eagle editorial said, “Winter is coming on with a slow but steady step; the decaying leaves which rustle upon the pavements, or flutter from the branches, upon which they have withered under the influence of the newly come and nipping frosts, are the silent but powerful testimonials of the change which will soon make an apparent desolation of the fair garments of nature, and rob the tree and flower, and shrub and verdure, of outward life and beauty. The summer’s pride and autumn’s glory have faded away; and while we experience the new sensations which the advent of winter occasions, let us not be unmindful of the promptings of humanity which they should also call forth. To the rich there is but little terror in the frosty embrace of winter. Guarded against his icy touch and shielded from his chilling breath, there is pleasure in his coming which makes his reign welcome and acceptable. But for the poor and houseless, his name is terror and his reign a horror. The cold wind that sweeps unheeded by the comfortable dwelling — or, if heeded, serves only to make the inmate feel still more the genial influence of the fireside — rudely penetrates the poor hovel, where no fire is lighted upon the hearth and no comforts abound. The rags that cover the bones of the homeless are but poor preventives of suffering; and it is a sad truth to know, that while the affluent are rejoicing, the stricken are suffering sorely.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1899, the Eagle reported, “CLEVELAND — A syndicate, said to be headed by Tom and Albert Johnson, the street car magnates, will build a street railroad in Honolulu and Oahu Island, on which the capital of the Hawaiian Islands is situated. Electric lines will not only be built within the city limits, but suburban lines will be constructed leading to the different points of interest and business near the city. A route will be built to the volcano for the convenience of tourists. The syndicate has absorbed the present horse car line in Honolulu. Ferryboats will also be operated by the new company  between the various islands of the group. The company, it is said, will have a monopoly of the street car business in Honolulu. At the Manhattan office of the Johnsons it was denied this afternoon that they were interested in this syndicate. Tom Johnson is now engaged in consolidating a number of small suburban lines in Philadelphia and Albert Johnson will soon go to London, where he intends to develop a big traction company.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1936, the Eagle reported, “If King Edward abdicates to marry the American girl of his choice, it will be a good example of ‘The World Well Lost for Love.’ It will in fact be so good an example of that grand gesture, that renunciation supreme, that nowhere in song or story, history or myth, will you find its exact equivalent. Kings have abdicated before but not for love — at least not often. Practically always the king who abdicates does it because the enemy is at the gate or the maddened mob, formerly his beloved though neglected people, is swarming down on the palace. When the country is at peace and the people in a mood of admiring adulation, kings do not abdicate. And certainly they have not done it when abdication meant renouncing, for a lady’s love, the rule of so huge a part of the actual ‘world’ as the British Empire. It is a pleasant romantic theme of some of our trashier movies, and the lesser adventure novelists who have to invent an improbable Graustark for their locale have played with it. But you will have to strain a point or several to find it in the records of monarchs of the past.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1962, the Eagle reported, “The city’s two transit commissioners jubilantly announced in Brooklyn a sharp increase in bus and subway riding throughout the metropolitan area. But Commissioner John J. Gilhooley and Daniel T. Scannell refused to go out on a limb over whether they could preserve the 15-cent fare beyond next June. Gilhooley and Scannell, the only members of the Transit Authority since the death of Chairman Charles L. Patterson, reported that the use of mass transportation was going upward in New York City while there was a downward trend in the nation as a whole. This was good news not only to the TA, but also to police, traffic experts and regional planners, who believe that good mass transportation is the only answer to the growing congestion which has all but choked city streets.”

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CoCo Vandeweghe
Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP
Judd Apatow
Vince Bucci/Invision/AP

NOTABLE PEOPLE BORN ON THIS DAY include “The Pretender” star Patrick Bauchau, who was born in 1938; baseball player and manager Larry Bowa, who was born in 1945; “Poltergeist” star JoBeth Williams, who was born in 1948; “Amadeus” star Tom Hulce, who was born in 1953; comedian Steven Wright, who was born in 1955; Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Peter Buck (R.E.M.), who was born in 1956; former N.Y. Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who was born in 1957; “Wallace and Gromit” creator Nick Park, who was born in 1958; filmmaker Judd Apatow, who was born in 1967; “Stargate Atlantis” star Torri Higginson, who was born in 1969; former Washington, D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty, who was born in 1970; baseball player Adam Eaton, who was born in 1988; and tennis player CoCo Vandeweghe, who was born in 1991.

Steven Wright
Lawrence Jackson/AP

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WE THE PEOPLE: The 13th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified on this day in 1865, abolishing slavery in the U.S. It reads, “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, save as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”

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THE ’60s ARE OVER: On this day in 1969, disaster struck at the Altamont Speedway in Livermore, California. A free concert for 300,000 fans, featuring performances by the Rolling Stones, Jefferson Airplane, Santana, the Flying Burrito Brothers and Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young turned tragic thanks to overcrowding, drug overdoses and the fatal stabbing of a spectator by a member of the Hell’s Angels motorcycle gang, which had been hired to provide security for the event.

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

 

Quotable:

“Someone asked me, if I were stranded on a desert island what book would I bring … ‘How to Build a Boat.’”

— comedian Steven Wright, who was born on this day in 1955


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