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November 8th in NYC's History

Posted: Nov 8, 2012 | 2:27 PM


1706 Queen Anne orders the eccentric Governor of New York, Lord
Cornbury, not to consent to any significant piece of legislation without
her express consent.


1789:  Washington returns to NYC Capitol after for four weeks, Washington traveled by stagecoach through New England, visiting all the northern states that had ratified the U.S. Constitution. Washington, the great Revolutionary War
hero and first leader of the new republic, was greeted by enthusiastic
crowds wherever he went. Major William Jackson, who was Washington's
aide-de-camp during the Revolutionary War, accompanied the president,
along with a private secretary and nine servants, including several
slaves. The group traveled as far north as Kittery, Maine, which was still a part of Massachusetts at the time.


1880...Legendary French Actress Sarah Bernhardt makes
her American debut at a packed Booth's Theater on 23rd Street. Tickets
go for as much as $15.


1897: Intrigued by the Catholic faith for years, Dorothy Day converted in 1927. In 1933, she co-founded The Catholic Worker,
which promoted Catholic teachings and tackled societal issues. It
became very successful and spawned the Catholic Worker Movement, which
tackled issues of social justice guided by its religious principles. Day
also helped establish special homes to help those in need.
Writer, editor, social reformer. Born on November 8, 1897, in New
York, New York. Dorothy Day was a radical during her time, working for
such social causes as pacifism and women’s suffrage. She arrested
several times for her involvement in protests. She even went on a hunger
strike after being jailed for protesting in front of the White House in
1917 as part of an effort to get women the right to vote.
Dorothy Day started out as journalist, writing for several socialist
and progressive publications in 1910s and 1920s. Intrigued by the
Catholic faith for years, she converted in 1927. With Peter Maurin, she
founded The Catholic Worker, which promoted Catholic teachings
as well as tackled societal issues of the day in 1933. It became very
successful and spawned the Catholic Worker Movement, which tackled
issues of social justice guided by its religious principles. As part of
the movement’s belief in hospitality, Day helped establish special homes
to help those in need.
Dorothy Day dedicated much of her life in service to her socialist
beliefs and her adopted faith, Catholicism. She died on November 29,
1980, at Maryhouse, one of the Catholic settlement houses she helped
establish.

1922:  Esther Rolle
One of Esther Rolle's first major acting parts was in the 1962 off-Broadway production of The Blacks. More New York stage roles followed. In the early 1970s, she starred in the Broadway musical, Don’t Play Us Cheap. Around this time, she landed the role of Florida Evans on Normal Lear's comedy series Maude. Audiences loved her character so much that Lear produced Good Times especially for her.
Actress. Born on November 8, 1922, in Pompano Beach, Florida.
A stage, film, and television actress, Esther Rolle is best remembered
as Florida Evans, a sharp, but caring housekeeper - a character she
played on two comedy series Maude and Good Times. One of
eighteen children, she was the daughter of Bahamian immigrants. Rolle
was a student at several colleges, including Hunter College in New York
City.
Early in her career, Esther Rolle was a member of the Shogola Obola
Dance Company. One of her first major acting parts was in the 1962
off-Broadway production of Jean Genet's The Blacks. More New York
stage roles followed, and she became a founding member of the Negro
Ensemble Company. In the early 1970s, she had a starring part in Melvin Van Peebles' Broadway musical, Don't Play Us Cheap, which was turned into a film in 1973. Around this time, she landed the role of Florida Evans, the wisecracking maid on Maude, a comedy series created by Norman Lear
that starred Beatrice Arthur in the title role. Audiences loved her
character so much that Lear produced a new show for Rolle entitled Good Times.
Good Times premiered in February 1974, and soon became a hit.
In the series, Florida Evans lived with her family in one of Chicago's
high-rise housing projects. John Amos played her husband, and both Amos
and Rolle wanted the show to present strong positive role models for the
African American community. While the show had some promising moments
in its early days, some felt that it perpetuated stereotypes about urban
blacks. The show often focused the antics of the eldest son J. J.,
played by Jimmie Walker, who created the national catchphrase
"Dyn-o-mite." Both of the actors playing the parents quit the show in
frustration. Amos left in 1976 and Rolle left the following year. She
was enticed back, however, for the 1978 - 1979 season with the promise
of content changes. But it proved to be too little, too late. The show
was canceled in 1979.
Oddly enough, it was Esther Rolle's performance as another maid that
garnered her television's highest honor. She won the Outstanding
Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or a Special Emmy Award in 1979
for Summer of My German Soldier. Rolle returned to the stage in several productions, including a 1987 tour of A Raisin in the Sun. Two years later, she appeared in a television version of the play. Rolle also found film roles in such movies as Driving Miss Daisy (1990), How to Make an American Quilt (1995), and Down in the Delta (1998), which was directed by poet Maya Angelou.
Esther Rolle died on November 17, 1998, in Los Angeles, California.


1931  Happy Birthday Broadcast journalist Morley Safer ("60 Minutes")


1951, Yankees catcher Yogi Berra is voted
the American League’s most valuable player for the first time in his
career. St. Louis Browns’ ace pitcher and slugger Ned Garver almost won
the award--in fact, a representative from the Baseball Writers
Association of America phoned him and told him that he had won
it--but after a recount it turned out that Berra had edged Garver out by
a nose. "It’s great to be classed with fellows like DiMaggio and
Rizzuto who have won the award," Berra told reporters that night. "I
sure hope I can win it a couple of more times, like Joe did." He went on
to be the league MVP twice more, in 1954 and 1955. Berra
had had a great season, for the most part--he’d been the Yanks’ leading
slugger, with 27 homers and 88 RBI--but he’d had a dramatic slump near
the end of the year. His teammate Allie Reynolds, meanwhile, had pitched
two no-hitters in 1951, and Garver had won 20 games and batted .305 for
the Browns, a "collection of old rags and tags" that had only managed
to win 32 games that Garver wasn’t pitching. In the face of these
performances, Berra was sure he wouldn’t win the award. "I was afraid I
had blown it with the bad finish," he said. In
fact, it was one of the closest MVP races ever. Each member of the
baseball writers’ association voted by naming the league’s 10 best
players and then ranking them. A first-place vote got a player 14
points; second place was worth nine, third place eight, and so on. When
the votes were tallied, the player with the most points overall won the
MVP. Berra, Garver and Reynolds actually had the same number of
first-place votes--six each--but Yogi squeaked by on his second-, third-
and fourth-place points. (His final score was 187; Garver’s was 157;
and Reynolds’ was 125.) Berra
was only the second catcher to win the AL MVP prize. (Mickey Cochrane
was the first.) That same year, another catcher--Roy Campanella of the
Dodgers--was the NL MVP.


1952  Happy Birthday Christie Hefner, Former CEO of Playboy Enterprise


1968  Happy Birthday Parker Posey, Actress


1972The premium cable TV network HBO (Home Box Office) made its debut with a showing of the movie "Sometimes a Great Notion."


1977...Democratic Congressman Ed Koch defeats Liberal
Mario Cuomo and Republican Roy Goodman to win the first of his three
three terms as mayor.

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