Friday, June 8

Happy belated Brooklyn-Queens Day!

For most of us, yesterday was just another strange mid-week teacher workday. But you might be interested to know that the first Thursday in June is actually when the schools celebrate Brooklyn-Queens Day, formerly known as Anniversary Day. Anniversary Day was first celebrated in Brooklyn and Queens in 1829 as a commemoration of the first Sunday schools in those boroughs — students paraded to honor their Sunday School teachers. There was some tension between Brooklyn and Queens and the rest of the city over the day off when the boroughs were consolidated in 1898, but the holiday continued to be celebrated, even though fewer and fewer people seemed to know what it honored. Last year was the first time that students in all five boroughs got the day off -- and also the first time that teachers didn't, as a result of a clause in the 2005 UFT contract with the city.

Gothamist has a rundown of some of the history of Brooklyn-Queens Day, complete with links to articles in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle dating back to 1861.

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