CHRONOLOGY OF NEW YORK CITY'S FACTUAL "FIRST" 1524-1999
Researched and Compiled by Miriam Medina

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*Please note this is a work in progress. New researched information will be added periodically.


1 9 3 3

1) The American Museum of Natural History Planetarium Authority was established by the State of New York 1933.

2 Grand Central Parkway opens, from Kew Gardens to the Nassau County Line.

3) .King Kong, the motion picture, premiered in New York, March 2, 1933. *(afp.com)

4) General Electric Building at 30 Rockefeller Center was built in 1933. * (t.a.)

5) Brooklynite Lena Horne begins her career as a chorus girl at Harlem's Cotton Club . * (nyct)

6) Heywood Campbell Broun, author born in Brooklyn, N.Y. founded the Newspaper Guild in 1933 and became its first president. * (docb)

7) Jewish Labor Committee 175 E. Broadway, N.Y.C. established 1933. * (ajyb)

8) Heywood Campbell Broun from Brooklyn, N.Y. He was a founder of the American Newspaper Guild and its first president from 1933 until his death. * (c.e.)

9) Eleanor Roosevelt, American humanitarian born in NYC. In 1933 she held the first press conference ever held by a Presidents' wife. She started in 1935 a daily Column "My Day" syndicated in many newspapers.* (c.e.)

10) Olga Samaroff, American Pianist and educator. She founded the Layman's Music Course Inc. in 1933. * (c.e.)

1 9 3 4

1) Cole Porter's Anything Goes opened at the Alvin Theatre in New York City. The show ran for 420 performances. *(a.com)

2) Fiorello La Guardia is elected to his first of three terms as mayor. * (NYCT)

3) The Bronx County Building (1934) located at 161st St. and Grand Concourse, by Joseph H. Freedlander and Max Hausle, is a modern courthouse. * (NY Guide)

4) Apollo Theater at 253 West 125th Street, (7th and 8th Ave) in Harlem, first introduced its world-famous Amateur Night in 1934, which launched the careers of legendary artists like Ella Fitzgerald.

5) The Apollo Theatre changes ownership and blacks are allowed in the audience; Bessie Smith sings the blues on opening night. * (nyct)

6) In 1934, the Mutual Broadcasting System was created to serve the increasing number of radio stations on the air at that time. During the 1940s, two additional radio networks were founded, the DuMont Network (1946) and the Liberty Broadcasting System (1949). They played an important role in the broadcast industry of their time, but later bowed to the giant networks and
their well-established affiliates.* (tvhbk)

7) 1934 - The first college basketball game at the Garden is played, between the University of Notre Dame and New York University.

8) Henry Miller, an American author born in NYC. Miller's first publication and perhaps best known works "Tropic of Cancer (1934) and Tropic of Capricorn (1939). * (c.e.)

9) Micheal Joseph Quill, American labor leader. IN 1934 he helped to organize the "Transport workers Union of America." * (c.e.)

10) The New School for Social Research is at 66 West Twelfth St. just east of Sixth Ave. Here, in 1934, was organized the University in Exile, its teachers being drw=awn from the brilliant political and religious exiles from Nazi Germany. This unique institution is now the school's Graduate Faculty of Political and Social Science. * (ajtg)

1 9 3 5

1) East River Drive construction begins.

2) Porgy & Bess" opened on Broadway at the Alvin Theatre, running for 16 weeks, followed by a three month road tour, October 10, 1935. *(afp.com)

3) The nation's first public housing project opens at Avenue A and East 3rd Street. * (nyct)

4) The Frick Museum at 1 East 70th Street, New York City, first opened as a museum in 1935. It was built in 1913 by Carere & Hastings. The Building housing the Frick Collection is a fine example of how people of extreme wealth lived in N.Y.C. in the early part of this century. * (Museums)

5) Alfred Drake, American singer, actor, and director, b. New York City, originally named Alfred Capurro. Drake first appeared on stage in 1935 in The Mikado. * (Bartleby)

6) Alcoholics Anonymous at 475 Riverside dr in New York City was founded in 1935. * (t.a.)

7) Hofra University in Hempstead, N.Y. was founded in 1935.

8) In 1935 Gerard Hordijk, an artist and painter, made his first trip to New York City where he exhibited at the contemporary Arts Gallery, painted the N.Y. Sky-line, and drew the dancers at Balanchine's American Ballet School at their daily practice. * (Hollanders)

9) Conference on Jewish Relations, Inc. (1935) 1841 Broadway N.Y.C. * (ajyb)

10) Kirsten Flagstad. In 1935 she made her debut at the Metropolitan Opera, New York as Sieglinde in Wagner's Die Walkure and was soon acclaimed as the greatest living Wagnerian soprano.* (c.e.)

11) Muriel Rukeyser, American poet born in NYC. Her first volume of poems "Theory of Flight" appeared in 1935. * (c.e.)

12) Maxwell Anderson's play Winterset opens on Broadway. Written in a poetic form, the play is based on the Sacco-Vanzetti case. * (t.a.a.)

1 9 3 6

1) Opening a new era of Arterial Access. The Triborough Bridge opened on July 11, 1936 at a cost of $60.3 million. *(Nyc crossings)

2) Life Magazine is founded. * (nyct)

3) The Children's Hour, a play by Lillian Hellman (1936) It was Hellman's first Broadway success. * (Benet's)

4) Marymount Manhattan College in New York City was founded in 1936. * (t.a.)

5) The American Labor Party was organized in New York by Labor Leaders and Liberals in 1936 primarily to support Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal and the men favoring it in national and local elections. * (c.e.)

6) Riker's Island penitentiary opens.

7) Anne O'Hare McCormick, journalist. In 1936 she became the first woman to be appointed to the New York Times Magazine editorial board. *(docb)

1 9 3 7

1) Look magazine is founded. * (NYCT)

2) The city's first woman to serve as a juror from the Bronx, was Anne Farley.

3) In 1937 the Guggenheim foundation, with the capacity for creating a museum, was established and in 1939 it opened a public showcase at 24 E. 54th Street. * (Fifth Avenue)

4) Queens College, in Flushing, N.Y., was founded in 1937.

5) Jerome Robbins, American choreographer and dancer born in NYC. He began his career dancing in musical comedy (1937). His first ballet "Fancy Free" 1944 was expanded into the musical "On the Town" the same year. * (c.e.)

6) The valuable Bache Collection, housed in the five-story former home of Jules S. Bache, at 814 Fifth Ave. (62nd St.), was opened to the public in 1937. All of the works in the collection are earlier than the 18th century. There are paintings by Rembrandt, Titian, Botticelli, Goya, Velasquez, Raphael, Gainsborough, Reynolds and Holbein. * (ajtg)

1 9 3 8

1) First practical, low-voltage florescent lamp marketed (air-conditioning first used for offices in the late 1920s).

2) On April 23, 1938, The Coast Guard Air Station, Floyd Bennett Field was established.

3) Protective baseball helmets were worn by batters for the very first time. * (a.com)

4) Charles F. Carlson invents the xerox process in Astoria, Queens. * (nyct)

5) Euthanasia Society of America was founded on November 30, 1938.

6) The Hastings School of Animation in New York City was organized in 1938.

7) Charlie Parker, called "Bird," was a world-famous alto saxophonist and jazz composer. Parker first arrived in New York City in 1938 or 1939, and soon established himself as one of jazz's most gifted and influential performers. He moved into the apartment at the height of his career, having achieved considerable success and renown as the co-founder of bebop, the modern jazz style that he and trumpeter Dizzy Gillispie created in New York City during the mid-1940s * (nyclc)

8) 1938 Uta Hagen makes her Broadway debut in a production of Chekhov's The Seagull.

9) Erich Leinsdorf, American conductor. He made his debut as an assistant conductor at the Metropolitan Opera House in 1938.* (c.e.)

10) Delmore Schwartz, American poet born in Brooklyn, N.Y. His first work "In Dreams Begin Responsibilities" appeared in 1938.* (c.e.)

11) 1938 First practical, low-voltage florescent lamp marketed (air-conditioning first used for offices in the late 1920s) * (stl)

1 9 3 9

1) New York City's La Guardia Airport first opens.

2) Brooklyn-Queens Expressway. The first section of the Brooklyn-Queens Connecting Highway, which connected Meeker Avenue in
Greenpoint, Brooklyn with Queens Boulevard (NY 25) in Woodside, Queens, opened to traffic in1939. The next section of the BQE, a stretch of six-lane elevated highway between the Williamsburg and Kosciuszko bridges, opened to traffic in 1950.

3) Television in the United States made its formal debut at the World's Fair in New York City on Sunday April 30, 1939 with the first
Presidential address on Television by Franklin D. Roosevelt. The signal was sent by theTelemobile (RCA's mobile Television van) to the Empire State transmitter and rebroadcast. * (mztv.com)

4) 1939 Jonas Salk, developer of the first vaccine against polio, receives his M.D. degree at NYU. *(NYU)

5) William Saroyan, an Armenian-American, whose first Broadway successes were "My Heart's in the Highlands (1939) and Time of Your Life. * (Concise)

6) Dorothy Schiff becomes New York City's first female newspaper publisher, publishing The New York Post. (1939) * (WTL)

7) United Jewish Appeal, 99 Park avenue in New York City was founded in 1939.

8) 22,000 are drawn to a Nazi "Americanism" rally at Madison Square Garden. * (nyct)

9) Columbia University physicists split the atom * (nyct)

10) American Biblical Encyclopedia Society, Inc. Torah Shelemah 114 Liberty St., N.Y.C.1939 * (ajyb)

11) Dorothy Schiff becomes New York City's first female newspaper publisher, publishing The New York Post. (1939) * (chipublib)

12) Wallace Kirkman Harrison, American architect. He designed the Trylon and Perisphere, the symbolizing structures for the N.Y. World's fair.* (c.e.)

1 9 4 0

1) Queens-Midtown Tunnel. It opened on November 15, 1940, and was the largest non-Federal project of its time. In 1936, Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia created the New York City Tunnel Authority to construct a twin-tube tunnel that had been proposed six years earlier between the East Side of Manhattan and Long Island City, Queens.

2) CBS engineer Peter Carl Goldmark made the first experimental broadcast of color television from the top of the Chrysler Building in 1940. (newsday.com- C. Blair)

3) The first blood bank is opened by Dr. Charles Drew.

4) Carson (Smith) McCullers, American novelist and short story writer, recognized as one of the most talented writers of her generation. Her first novel "The Heart is a Lonely Hunter" published in 1940. * (Benet's)

5) Batman makes his first appearance in Gotham City (New York)

6) Hebrew Literary Foundation, Inc.(1940) 1141 Broadway, N.Y.C.* (ajyb)

7) February 28, 1940 - Basketball is televised for the first time ( Fordham University vs. the University of Pittsburgh).

8) Adolph Gottlieb, American painter born in NYC. In the 1940s Gottlieb created "pictographs" primitivistic symbols set in grid-like pattern. * (c.e.)

9) Columbia university physicists were already building the world's first atomic furnace, or pile, on the seventh floor of the Pupen building. On January 20, 1940 the first federal grant for atomic energy research was awarded to Columbia. * (epic)

10) Dr. Simon Baruch Playground, opened in 1940 by the Department of Parks. The Housing Authority has donated additional land to be incorporated into the playground. A bronze bust of Bernard Baruch was unveiled there at the dedication ceremonies of the Baruch Houses. * (ajtg)

Continue on Page: 7  (1941-1952)

 


 

 

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