Summer in Manhattan – nothing that taking up residence inside a walk-in freezer couldn’t fix. But this July 2nd in 1964 had its fair share of problems – not the least being the air-conditioning up and quitting at The Empire State Building. Aside from its tourist-attraction status, The Empire State Building was also a busy office building. And for the air-conditioning to go out, particularly on a day when the temperature, as of 7:00 pm in Mid-town was 83 degrees and smack in the middle of a heatwave, was especially miserable. The trouble was, the air-conditioning had been out for 5 days and temperatures in Manhattan had been soaring to 99 degrees (and all that humidity to boot), with no sign it would be repaired and back on anytime soon.
But that wasn’t the only news going on this July 2nd in 1964, in and around Manhattan. There was crime, as always. An elderly woman was murdered in her Greenwich Village apartment with no suspects and no apparent motive. A heist of Gold False Teeth from a Dental Supply Company in Brooklyn netted around 1400 individual teeth and a lot of miscellaneous gold that hadn’t yet been worked. Both the reporter and the now-empty Dental Supply Company were wondering what the market was like for stolen false teeth.
Questions about limiting the term of office for New York City’s Mayor were discussed in a bill about to be brought up at a City Council meeting. The bill would ask for a 2-term maximum, just as it for the President of the U.S. – the effort was brought up in an attempt at thwarting another run for office by Mayor Wagner, who was already into his fourth term.
Potholes around Queens were acting up, this July 2nd. Seems the heat had been so intense in recent days that the asphalt used to patch up potholes was bulging and popping like balloons under the weight of passing cars.
And Coney Island vendors were reporting the worst crowd turnout in over 30 years. Reasons were many, but many said dramatically increased violence on Subways to Coney Island was partly responsible, but then inadequate parking and competition from the nearby New York World’s Fair were also factors.
And that’s how life rolled in Manhattan on this July 2, 1964 as reported by the WNBC-AM/FM Evening News.