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January 23rd in NYC History - Necessity, the mother of Invention

Posted: Jan 23, 2013 | 1:42 AM

1664:  Holland issued an edict emphasizing the right of the Dutch West India Company to plant settlements in Nieuw Nederland.
  The British Navy was unimpressed, and within a few months its overwhelming superiority convinced the colony to officially become British. 

For the most part.  Dutch loyalists in the colony, renamed New-York, would pop in and out for a few decades, attempting to re-establish Dutch rule.

1849:  Elizabeth Blackwell becomes the first American woman Medical Doctor.
  Later she pioneered women's health, public health, and nursing education in New York City.  She was born and returned to England.

1867:  The East River, actually a salt water tidal strait, froze solid, halting ferry service from Brooklyn, the breadbasket of New York City.  New Yorkers and Brooklynites crossed the river by foot, but how long would Manhattan last without food deliveries?!

A few months later, New York State approved the construction of a bridge from Manhattan to Brooklyn.  The Brooklyn Bridge, the Eighth Wonder of the World, would open in 1883.  Its development required bold new technology and daring deadly construction work.

We experience some of this on Brooklyn Heights Tours, Seaport Tours, Brooklyn Bridge Tours, and DuMBO tours.

(Editorial Tangent:  As of this blog 1/23/13, the Statue of Liberty's island, and Ellis Island remain closed due to the Super Storm Sandy on 10/29/12.  The Statue and the Immigration Monument are undamaged, but the landings require about $60 million in repairs.  Even though these are internationally famous and important New York City and national symbols, there are no plans to fix these islands' docks, so the islands remain closed to the public.  Compare and contrast.)

1932:  New York Governor Franklin D. Roosevelt announced his candidacy for the Democratic presidential nomination.  It worked out.

1933:  Broadway singer, dancer, and actress Chita Rivera born.

1943:  Casablanca, starring New Yorkers Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman, is released in theaters across the U.S.

1962:  In New York Tony Bennett recorded "I Left My Heart in San Francisco"
on Columbia Records.

1976:  Actor, singer, athlete, scholar, and Civil Rights Activist, an American "Renaissance Man," Paul Robeson died.  He lived 79 years.

1984:  Hulk Hogan won his first World Wrestling Federation title at Madison Square Garden

1986:  The first Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony, which honored Ray Charles, Chuck Berry, Buddy Holly
and other greats.

1964:  Actress Mariska Hargitay, "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" celebrates her birthday.

2002:  Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl was abducted in Karachi, Pakistan, by terrorists who demanded that the US resume the sale of military aircraft promised to Pakistan nearly ten years before but stopped due to Pakistan's nuclear weapons development.  (Strange request from terrorists indicating that perhaps they had links to the Pakistani military.) 

Pearl was investigating the Shoe Bomber Richard Reid's support in Pakistan.  (Perhaps that act of terrorism had links to the Pakistani military.) 

Pearl was later brutally killed, partially due to anti-semitism, even though Pearl was an egalitarian who sought peace and the best in people and diversity. 

The Pakistani investigation into his murders is slowly, very slowly, wending its way through their courts.


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