Brooklyn Boro

July 20: ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

July 20, 2023 Brooklyn Eagle History
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ON THIS DAY IN 1880, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle reported, “Sharks in the Great South bay destroyed 170 fathoms of netting belonging to Silas Rogers, of Bellport. He says one shark of the school was fully ten feet long, and came so near his boat that he struck it with an oar.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1895, the Eagle reported, “Long shots and second choices had a carnival at Aqueduct yesterday and the betting people quit very weary. Owing to the unsettled condition of affairs among the bookmakers, resulting from the interference from Queens county officials, the crowd was comparatively small, only 2,000 persons being present when the racing began.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1908, an Eagle editorial said, “The possessive form must be retained, and when the word is written it stands for an institution which is American in fame, though its location is New York. Delmonicoes may come and Delmonicoes may go, but Delmonico’s goes on forever. The Delmonicoes have all gone — John Peter, Lorenzo, Siro, Charles have passed away — but their works remain. The generation which knew them and to which they meant much is thinning so rapidly that soon the names will be but traditions. An heir to their fame is left in Josephine Crist Delmonico — great granddaughter of the original caterer, John Peter, who made the name and restaurant over which he presided famous. More social history of New York surrounds the name than any other that can be suggested. A Delmonico restaurant has been a conspicuous feature of every stage of New York life, almost, one is tempted to say, from the beginning.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1917, the Eagle reported, “The full uniform of a U.S. soldier was found in a bathhouse at the foot of Henderson’s walk, Coney Island, last night. The police are trying to decide if it was left there as a decoy by a deserter or whether the owner was drowned. Frank Bruno of 2724 West Fifteenth street, Coney Island, an attendant, found one of the doors in the east section locked, and opened it with his masterkey. On the coat collar of the uniform he found a bronze disc marked A. 9. A blue cord was around the hat, indicating that the soldier was an infantryman.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1920, the Eagle reported, “Lt. Col. John E. Hunt, commandant of Castle William Prison, held responsible for the escape of Grover C. Bergdoll, millionaire Philadelphia slacker, will be placed on trial before a military court at Governor’s Island tomorrow morning. He is charged with violating the 96th Article of War, in that his conduct was prejudicial to military discipline and tended to bring disgrace on the military service by not having Bergdoll properly guarded. Bergdoll escaped from the custody of two prison guards from Castle William, in Philadelphia, while en route to West Virginia, where he said he had cached $150,000 while a fugitive during the war. Bergdoll at the time of his escape was serving a sentence at Castle William.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1924, Eagle columnist Frederick Boyd Stevenson said, “The forest area of the world is approximately 6,000,000,000 acres. In Asia and South America there are 2,000,000,000 acres; in Africa 797,000,000 acres; in Europe 774,000,000 acres; in Australia and Oceana 283,000,000; in North America 1,444,000,000 acres. Each year about 56,000,000,000 cubic feet of timber are cut from the world forests. Nearly one-half of the timber used each year in the world comes from United States forests, 95 percent of it being used in this country. Our forests are being depleted at the rate of 25,000,000,000 cubic feet annually, while the growth of our forests is only 6,000,000,000 cubic feet annually. How long can we stand this drain?”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1939, the Eagle reported, “With adjournment in sight, both Senate and House are cleaning up unfinished business as quickly as possible. The House called up two controversial measures today. One would authorize an investigation of the Labor Board by a House committee. The other was the Hatch bill, designed to curtail ‘pernicious political activities,’ which has been approved by the Senate.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1948, the Eagle reported, “SEOUL (U.P.) — A group of Koreans from Communist-dominated North Korea killed an American soldier from ambush today, the U.S. Army reported. Another soldier was slightly wounded in the incident that occurred on American territory near the 38th parallel separating the U.S. and Soviet occupation zones. A high American source said a strong letter of protest would be sent to Russian occupation authorities at Pyongyang, North Korea, whom Americans hold responsible for all border incidents. Names of all service men were withheld. Dr. Syngman Rhee, American-educated Nationalist leader, was elected the first president of the new republic of Korea today.”

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Sandra Oh
Evan Agostini/Invision/AP
Omar Epps
Willy Sanjuan/Invision/AP

NOTABLE PEOPLE BORN ON THIS DAY include Baseball Hall of Famer Tony Oliva, who was born in 1938; “Bette Davis Eyes” singer Kim Carnes, who was born in 1945; Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Carlos Santana, who was born in 1947; Twisted Sister co-founder Jay Jay French, who was born in 1952; “Career Opportunities” star Frank Whaley, who was born in 1963; “The Crocodile Hunter” star Terri Irwin, who was born in 1964; Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Stone Gossard (Pearl Jam), who was born in 1966; “Lost” star Josh Holloway, who was born in 1969; “Grey’s Anatomy” star Sandra Oh, who was born in 1971; “House” star Omar Epps, who was born in Brooklyn in 1973; “Archer” star Judy Greer, who was born in 1975; supermodel Gisele Bundchen, who was born in 1980; “Dancing with the Stars” co-host Julianne Hough, who was born in 1988; and 2019 World Series MVP Stephen Strasburg, who was born in 1988.

Josh Holloway
Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP

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

 

Quotable:

“You never know what worse luck your bad luck has saved you from.”

— novelist Cormac McCarthy, who was born on this day in 1933


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