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By On This Day in NYC's History


On July 16, 1990: The Empire State Building caught fire. The blaze began on the 51st floor of the 102-story landmark and took over two hours to contain. Thankfully, no one died in the fire, but 38 people were injured. After an extensive search of the premises, on July 17th, the Fire Department filed criminal charges against the building’s management, alleging that the defects in the alarm system may have delayed the response of the fire fighters.

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On July 16, 1963: Actress Phoebe Cates was born in New York City. Known for her roles in Fast Times at Ridgemont High and Gremlins, Cates has also recorded a small number of songs for various soundtracks. She currently owns a boutique in the Upper East Side.



On July 16, 1846: The New York City Yacht Club held its first regatta, which was billed as a “trial of speed.” The only times the now annual event has not occurred since 1846 were because of the Spanish-American War, World Wars I and II, and following the assassination of Senator Robert Kennedy. Membership to the club is by invitation only.

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