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December 27th in NYC History
Freedom of Religion,
A great cathedral and music hall rise,

Posted: Dec 26, 2012 | 11:12 PM

1657:  Religious Freedom (tolerance) comes to North America via the Flushing Remonstrance, a local sheriff's declaration to protect the freedom of Quakers/Friends to worship in Flushing, Queens.  This was in defiance to the intolerant Dutch Governor/CEO/Director General of the Nieuw Nederlands Colony.

"Wee desire therefore in this case not to judge least we be judged, neither to condemn least we be condemned, but rather let every man stand or fall to his own Master. Wee are bounde by the law to do good unto all men....

The law of love, peace and liberty in the states extending to Jews, Turks and Egyptians,
as they are considered sons of Adam, which is the glory of the outward state of Holland, soe love, peace and liberty, extending to all in Christ Jesus, condemns hatred, war and bondage ....

Therefore if any of these said persons come in love unto us, we cannot in conscience lay violent hands upon them, but give them free egresse and regresse unto our Town, and houses, as God shall persuade our consciences, for we are bounde by the law of God and man to doe good unto all men and evil to noe man...."

Such beautiful language and sentiments; it makes me proud to be a New Yorker.

This successful defiance made what would become the colony of New-York unique among its British-American colonies, some of which had freedom of religion of the intolerant kind. 

That is: 'freedom for me; you can and should fry in hell.'  Or why wait?  'Get in that that bonfire over there, which will send you to hell faster.  Your sizzling sounds good.'  This is an actual paraphrase of a diary of the same people who were saved by the Natives on Thanksgiving a few months before.

In any case, here in Nieuw Nederlands, people were standing up for other peoples' rights.  They weren't perfect: the Native Americans had it tough here, too, but we were above average.

1892:  Cathedral of St. John the Divine's construction begins. Happy 120th Birthday!

It is the world's largest Cathedral, and third largest church,
seating 6000 and standing another 2000. 

The Statue of Liberty can fit inside (150 ft, 50m, 15 stories) the dome.   

More about the Cathedral of St John the Divine's future, that didn't happen (yet?) is below, plus some notes for future editions.

1927:  "Show Boat," by Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein II, opened at the Ziegfeld Theater in New York City.  "Old Man River" is still a favorite song.

1927:  Agnes Nixon, the Queen of television soap opera, born in Chicago. 

1932:  Radio City Music Hall opened in New York City.    

The original performance, including the Roxyettes (now the
Rockettes), lasted six hours.  (This is not pictured here.)

The subsequent format was briefer including live and filmed performances.   

All of Rockefeller Center was supposed to be called Radio City, and where the Music Hall is was supposed to be the Metropolitan Opera's location.    The original vision was for steps going up and the roof having a network of parks suspended over the developments below.  I'll try to get pictures of this, or you can send them to me.

Radio City Musical Hall was once the largest indoor theater in the world.  Seating almost 7000 (more than the Cathedral of St. John, the Divine), it is still one of the largest and most beautiful.  
The hourly tour is very worthwhile.

1937:  75 years ago, Actress Mae West was banned after she performed an 'Adam and Eve' sketch on NBC radio.

1945: The World Bank was created by 28 nations.

 1947: "Howdy Doody," the children's show, debuted on NBC

1964:  The Supremes perform on the Ed Sullivan Show their first time.

1967:  Red Holzman, the best New York Knicks coach, assumes the role.

1970:  "Hello, Dolly!" closed on Broadway after 2,844 performances.

Here are some things about the Cathedral of St John the Divine I will add in future years, interspersed amongt images of the proposed future of the Cathedral:

A St John the Divine early concept, looking SW

Yet another early concept, looking SW

Another early St John the Divine concept, looking NE

Santiago Calatrava's contemporary completion concept, looking south.

[story about rival architects, subway's tiles and Guastavino's tiles]  
 [ rivalry with Catholics St Patrick's and St Ambrose ]
  [ still under construction even as a landmark being renovated ]    [ insert story about Bonkers my dog marking one of the pillars on St Francis Day, amongst elephants and giraffes. ] 
  [ insert story about me teaching a class there for UHAB ]  
 [ insert story about development of sculptures in my lifetime and the local stone masons who carved them ] 

 [ Saturday Cathedral Tours: 2 'Vertical Tours,' and 2 'Highlight Tours'  Reservations and flashlights requested (212) 932-7347.  If you are going, let me know.  I want to join you. ]


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