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February 17: ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

February 17, 2023 Brooklyn Eagle History
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ON THIS DAY IN 1901, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle reported, “Howard S. Starrett of 171 Clermont avenue, commissary sergeant of the Third Battery, and a professional aeronaut, and L. Stevens, a balloon manufacturer of Manhattan, are building, at 250 Third avenue, Manhattan, a controllable balloon, or air ship, under patents which have but recently been granted them. They have already constructed a working model, which both of the inventors claim has proved a success, and they are now engaged in building a big machine of the same type, capable of carrying, the inventors claim, a weight of 1,200 pounds. The machine will be given a trial when warm weather arrives. It will not be a public demonstration, although newspaper men will be invited to witness the trial voyage. The machine in course of construction is cigar shaped, one end being considerably more pointed than the other. The elongated framework is of steel tubing, which is attached to the cigar shaped balloon, and in the passenger cabin there will be placed a gasoline motor for use in operating the machine. The silken bag, constructed in the shape of a monster cigar, will be 65 feet long and 20 feet in height. The structural framework will be 30 feet long and 10 feet high. This framework is already finished and is now in the workshop of Mr. Stevens.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1911, the Eagle reported, “ALBANY — Senator McManus has introduced a bill to prohibit the sale of hypodermic needles or syringes without the written order of a physician or veterinarian. ‘Ninety percent of those who use morphine or other narcotics,’ he said today, ‘use the hypodermic needle.’”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1918, the Eagle reported, “The youngest of the world’s republics is also the least known. To most people the word Ukraine means nothing. A year ago and the average high school boy would not even have known that it refers to a part of Russia. And yet here is a great people, with a stirring history, occupying a territory larger than France, an area as large as New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and all the New England states taken together, with a population as large as that of all that part of the United States lying west of the Mississippi. But it is not strictly accurate to say that the Ukraine occupies 850,000 square kilometers and has a population of 30,000,000. No one knows today just what the frontiers are of this new state, or how many people are included within its borders. The treaty of peace which the representatives of the Ukrainian Rada at Kieff signed with the representatives of the Quadruple Alliance at Brest-Litovsk did indicate the southwestern frontiers of the new Republic of Little Russia. But it was silent about the boundaries which are to separate it from Muscovite Russia on the north and east, from Rumania, the Caucasus and the Black Sea districts on the south and east.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1922, the Eagle reported, “PARIS — Representatives here of Transatlantic lines echo the British wail against the American immigration restrictions already mentioned in dispatches from your London correspondent. As a matter of fact, considerable gloom exists in steamship headquarters, despite rosy reports from the United States concerning heavy summer tourist bookings. According to one prominent official, the already high first and second class rates must be maintained or even increased in order to offset the tremendous loss caused by the third class accommodations on nearly all ships now being virtually empty on account of the severity of the American law … Inasmuch as the steerage quarters are by far the largest part of a ship, the lines counted heavily on that class of traffic in order to make money.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1929, the Eagle reported, “A complete collection of autographed portraits of all the U.S. Presidents will be shown for the first time at Loeser’s tomorrow and will remain on exhibit for ten days. Several generations ago the collection was started by the family of its present owner, Dr. Hamilton Holt, former editor of the Independent and now president of Rollins College in Florida. The pictures are being shown in New York through the courtesy of Julius Levy. Every portrait bears an authentic autograph and a number of them bear comments written by the Presidents portrayed. All the portraits are framed in black wood with gold insignia of stars and arrows.”

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Paris Hilton
Charles Sykes/Invision/AP
Michael Jordan
Thibault Camus/AP

NOTABLE PEOPLE BORN ON THIS DAY include former Brooklyn Dodgers pitcher Roger Craig, who was born in 1930; “St. Elsewhere” star Christina Pickles, who was born in 1935; Pro Football Hall of Famer Jim Brown, who was born in 1936; Oscar-winning actress Brenda Fricker, who was born in 1945; “Major League” star Rene Russo, who was born in 1954; “Home Improvement” star Richard Karn, who was born in 1956; “The Mummers’ Dance” singer Loreena McKennitt, who was born in 1957; “La Bamba” star Lou Diamond Phillips, who was born in 1962; comedian Larry the Cable Guy, who was born in 1963; Basketball Hall of Famer Michael Jordan, who was born in Brooklyn in 1963; “Armageddon” director Michael Bay, who was born in 1965; “Prison Break” star Dominic Purcell, who was born in 1970; “Wild Things” star Denise Richards, who was born in 1971; Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Billie Joe Armstrong (Green Day), who was born in 1972; “Jerry Maguire” star Jerry O’Connell, who was born in 1974; “3rd Rock from the Sun” star Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who was born in 1981; media personality Paris Hilton, who was born in 1981; “Shape of You” singer Ed Sheeran, who was born in 1991; and tennis player Madison Keys, who was born in 1997.

Ed Sheeran
Eric Jamison/Invision/AP

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ON THE AIR: Walter Lanier “Red” Barber was born on this day in 1908. The Mississippi native — one of the first broadcasters inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame — began his professional play-by-play career with the Cincinnati Reds in 1934. He also worked for the Brooklyn Dodgers (1939-53) and N.Y. Yankees (1954-66). He died in 1992.

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PARENTAL GUIDANCE: Today is National PTA Founders’ Day — a reminder of the substantial role the PTA has played locally, regionally and nationally in supporting parental involvement and working on behalf of all children and families since its creation in 1897. For more information, visit www.pta.org.

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

 

Quotable:

“I can accept failure, but I can’t accept not trying.”

— Basketball Hall of Famer Michael Jordan, who was born in Brooklyn on this day in 1963


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