Free concert

I read in the April 9 New York Times that the New York Philharmonic is to give a free concert on Governors Island in New York on July 5. The orchestra is looking for a permanent summer home, and this island location would be ideal. It was a military base, dating to the 18th century, and was turned over to the state in 2003. From the Battery Marine Building in lower Manhattan, next to the Staten Island Ferry Terminal, the ferry for the island takes about seven minutes.

The concert will start at 6:30 p.m. A fireworks display will also be a part of the concert.

How I would enjoy that outing. The only problem would be getting to the ferry, and hoping for good weather, of course. The article says that the present ferry carries 497 passengers, but that other piers around the harbor could be used.

The program to be played was listed in the Times article: Four Dance episodes from “Rodeo,” by Copland; Rossini’s Overture to “The Italian Girl in Algiers”; Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Capriccio Espagnol”; and the appropriately militaristic “1812” overture byTchaikovsky, a parks concert favorite.

And no charge for that excellent program. The article didn’t mention the price of the ferry ride, but that would be fun, too.

Trial remembered

I read the review in the Nov. 6, 2007, Christian Science Monitor about a recent book by Bruce Watson titled “Sacco-Vanzetti: the Men, the Murders, and the Judgment of Mankind,” on the two immigrants from Italy who came to the United States in 1908.

I plan to read that book, as I was aware, at the age of 9, of these men and their pending death. Ferdinando Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti were Italian-born American laborers. They were tried, convicted and executed on Aug. 23, 1927, in Massachusetts for the April 15, 1920, armed robbery and murders of a shoe factory proprietor and the guard accompanying him, with his payroll, in South Braintree, Mass.

Their trial lasted 6-1/2 weeks and it took the all-white, all-male jury just three hours to find them guilty, sentencing them to death.

Many people were sympathetic, and appeals and motions for a new trial dragged on for more that six years. Sacco and Vanzetti were poor immigrants with limited English.

Gov. Alvin T. Fuller appointed three men to review the trial evidence and verdict. The committee included the presidents of Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. They concluded that both were “guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.” The governor let the sentence stand, and Sacco and Vanzetti were executed at midnight on April 12, 1927.

Watson, in his book, finds that the behavior of the two was suspicious and their alibis were suspect. But the reviewer in the Monitor says that Watson makes it abundantly clear that they did not get a fair trial and should have had another day in court.

“After reading this fine book, most readers will nod in agreement,” said Terry Hartle, the reviewer.

And I thought so, way back in the 1920s, when I included them in my “Now I lay me down to sleep” evening prayer, when I added their names, saying “God bless Sacco and Vanzetti.” I recall that to this day, too, especially since reading this article in the Monitor. I don’t recall what my listening parents said about that, but it was surely my opinion. I was upset about the execution, of course.

Sweet and tart

Today’s recipe is from “Sugar ‘n Spice,” 1978, the cookbook put out by Mount Etna Grange, North Baldwin. This was submitted by Arlene Wheeler.

LELA’S LEMON SPONGE PUDDING

1 can Carnation evaporated milk (chill in freezer all day)

1 package lemon Jello, dissolved in 1-1/4 cups of boiling water

1/3 cup sugar

Juice of 1 lemon

2-1/2 cups of vanilla cookie crumbs

XXX salt

Add sugar, lemon juice and salt to Jello. Let stand until it begins to jell. Place in large bowl. Whip the can of milk and add to lemon mixture.

Place half of the crumbs in bottom of pan, add Jello mixture. Sprinkle rest of crumbs over top. Let stand in refrigerator several hours or overnight.

Ramblings

filed under: