January 30th in New York City History
Iron ships, FDR, Hal Prince, Carole King, Kiss, Hostages, Murderer.
Posted: Jan 30, 2013 | 1:44 AM
by Jared Goldstein
1862: The iron sided ship "Monitor" was launched from Greenpoint, Brooklyn. She defeated many wooden Confederate wooden ships leading up to her duel with the iron clad "Merrimac" in March of that year.
This led to the end of wooden ships.
The Brooklyn Navy yard was the start of most of the Navy's great ships.
1882: Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the 32nd president of the United States, born. He died 1945.
1912: Historian Barbara Tuchman born in NYC.
1928: Broadway producer and director Hal Prince born in NYC.
1942: Songwriter and singer Carole King of NYC born.
1973: (and now for something completely different) Gene Simmons leads Kiss' first performance in Queens bedecked in makeup.
1981: Two million New Yorkers celebrated and honored the 51 freed U.S. embassy hostages who had been held captive in Iran for 444 days. Lower Broadway was showered in yellow ribbons and tickertape.
In that time, the hostage crisis was counted off daily in the news. Whole shows were devoted to the crisis, such as the one that became Ted Koppel's Nightline.
Some argue that the Reagan election campaign negotiated with the Iranians to delay President Carter's freeing the hostages past the election to ensure a Reagan victory as part of their "October Surprise" scheme.
Investigators also believe that the October Surprise team was used again by the Reagan administration to trade embargoed US arms to the Iranians for Americans that the Iranians continued capturing. Unlike Carter's hostage crisis, the Reagan hostage crisis was hardly noted.
The gouged arms profits from a desperate Iran were diverted from the Iranian deals to arm the embargoed Contras fighting the Communist Nicaraguan Government. Iran kept seizing more US hostages to continue getting what they wanted, weaponry to fight their war with Iraq.
This is known as the Iran-Contra Affair, which is a template for covert operations: getting untraceable income to circumvent Congress' control over the budget and foreign affairs, as well as avoiding public oversight, and creating a secret government hiding and acting within the official government.
1989: Manhattan lawyer Joel Steinberg is convicted of first-degree manslaughter in the death of his adopted daughter Lisa. The horrific case gained national attention. He was sentenced to up to 25 years in prison, but is released for good behavior in 2004 when Lisa would have been 23.