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By On This Day in NYC's History


On August 16, 1953: Baseball player Babe Ruth died at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. A pioneer of baseball and member of the legendary 1923 Yankees, Ruth was adored across America. He was especially adored in New York where thousands stood vigil outside his hospital on the day of his death. Following his death, Ruth was laid out for public viewing at his beloved Yankee Stadium before his funeral mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral two days later.

Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images



On August 16, 1958: Actress Angela Bassett was born in Harlem. A performer from a young age, Bassett attended Yale for both undergraduate and graduate, where she earned her MFA at the Yale School of Drama. After getting her start on the stage, Bassett transitioned to the screen where she is perhaps best known for her portrayal of Tina Turner in the biopic What’s Love Got To Do With It, for which she won a Golden Globe and an Academy Award nomination.


On August 16, 1975: Rodgers and Hart-A Musical Celebration closed at the Helen Hayes Theater on Broadway. The musical presented the history of the relationship between Rodgers and Hart, the premier songsmiths of the early 20th century. The show featured many chart-topping numbers they had written together, many of which had been eclipsed by the more mainstream popularity of the duo Rodgers and Hammerstein.

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