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February 9: ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

February 9, 2023 Brooklyn Eagle History
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ON THIS DAY IN 1913, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle reported, “Work is to be commenced at once on a bill imposing a tax on incomes, under the constitutional authority now provided. Five thousand dollars will probably be the minimum income taxed, and the rate will be graduated upon larger amounts. The new constitutional amendment is sweeping, authorizing taxation upon incomes ‘from whatever source derived.’ The corporation tax will be abolished. As the limitless possibilities of the income tax as an economic measure are realized by the dominant party in Congress, the work of the Ways and Means Committee in writing moderate tariff legislation becomes more difficult. Deprived, in a large measure, of the claim that duties upon raw materials are necessary to raise revenue, since the income tax will furnish a plenty, the moderationists find themselves assailed vigorously by the radical element in the House, demanding free sugar, free raw wool and free lumber.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1920, the Eagle reported, “‘The Romance of Aircraft’ (Frederick A. Stokes), by Laurence Yard Smith, is precisely what the title suggests. The story of the conquest of the air, with its world-war chapters, is romantic in the highest degree, and the author writes with due regard for its striking interest. Beginning with the Blanchard hydrogen balloon, which rose in Paris in 1784, the first really notable ascent of such a ship in history, he notes that in January, 1785, the same Blanchard, and Dr. Jeffries, an American physician, sailed across the English Channel from Dover. The latter was the first long balloon voyage … It may surprise Americans to know that balloons were used to good purpose for observation work in the Civil War, and that they assisted the army of the North to keep an eye on the movements of the Confederates around Richmond.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1940, the Eagle reported, “WASHINGTON (U.P.) — The United States has begun world peace discussions with other neutrals, looking toward eventual armament reductions and stabilization of the economic order, Secretary of State Cordell Hull announced today. The belligerent nations may be brought into the discussion later, Hull said. He emphasized that the present conversations are informal and that no definite peace proposals have been put forward yet. Hull’s announcement came less than two hours after President Roosevelt disclosed that Undersecretary of State Sumner Welles will sail Feb. 17 to survey conditions in Italy, Germany, France and Great Britain. Officials declared there was no connection between the Welles trip and the peace talks. Hull did not reveal what neutral nations already are engaging in the peace discussions, which he said were being carried on through regular diplomatic channels. The Secretary of State expressed the belief, however, that all neutrals would join in the discussions, because all have a common desire for the ‘eventual restoration of world peace on a sound and lasting basis.’”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1951, Eagle TV columnist Bob Lanigan wrote, “Radcliffe Hall, whose name sounds more like a girls’ finishing school than that of a topnotch WNBT newscaster, pulled one of the biggest bloomers in television history one Sunday night toward the end of last year. Reading from prepared scripts and news bulletins, Hall, in his usual efficient manner, successfully telecast the day’s current events. He then proceeded to relate the late sports results and the roof caved in. He had the New York Giants playing ice hockey, the Knickerbockers playing football, etc., and scores for one type of sport attributed to another. The oddest part of this entire rhubarb was that he closed the newscast in his usual manner, not realizing that he had said anything unusual. The entire incident was beautifully idiotic and Hall deserves some sort of citation. Not for pulling his boner, but for the good sportsmanship he displayed the following Sunday evening, when he frankly admitted his error and made no attempt whatsoever to alibi it. You’ve got to admire a guy like that.”

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Mookie Wilson
Lynne Sladky/AP
Michael B. Jordan
Andy Kropa/Invision/AP

NOTABLE PEOPLE BORN ON THIS DAY include Songwriters Hall of Famer Barry Mann, who was born in Brooklyn in 1939; Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Carole King, who was born in 1942; Oscar-winning actor Joe Pesci, who was born in 1943; Pulitzer Prize-winning author Alice Walker, who was born in 1944; “Rosemary’s Baby” star Mia Farrow, who was born in 1945; “Who’s the Boss?” star Judith Light, who was born in 1949; N.Y. Mets World Series hero Mookie Wilson, who was born in 1956; former NASA Chief Astronaut Peggy Whitson, who was born in 1960; country singer Travis Tritt, who was born in 1963; former N.Y. Mets catcher Todd Pratt, who was born in 1967; Baseball Hall of Famer Vladimir Guerrero, who was born in 1975; “The Deuce” star and former Sheepshead Bay resident Margarita Levieva, who was born in 1980; “Creed” star Michael B. Jordan, who was born in 1987; and N.Y. Giants running back Saquon Barkley, who was born in 1997.

Carole King
Charles Sykes/AP

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THE LAST BATTLE: William Henry Harrison was born in Virginia 250 years ago today. As a military officer, he gained hero status for his leadership in the Battle of Tippecanoe (1811) and the Battle of the Thames (1813). He became the ninth U.S. president on March 4, 1841 but died only a month later. He was the first president to die in office and the last to have been born a British subject. His grandson, Benjamin Harrison, was the 23rd president (1889-93).

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LIVE FROM NEW YORK: The Beatles kicked off the “British Invasion” of America on this day in 1964. The Fab Four performed five songs on “The Ed Sullivan Show” in front of an estimated TV audience of 73 million — the largest viewership in history at that time.

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SAY CHEESE: Today is National Pizza Day, a day to celebrate America’s favorite pie. The first known pizzeria opened in Naples, Italy, in 1738 as a snack stall serving mostly working-class residents. Pizza has since become a worldwide favorite, with pizzerias and Italian pizza and pasta restaurants comprising 14 percent of all U.S. restaurants. Many pizza parlors offer special deals on this day.

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

 

Quotable:

“The only legitimate right to govern is an express grant of power from the governed.”

— President William Henry Harrison, who was born on this day in 1773


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