year of the nation’s bicentennial started off with New York
Magazine calling the Tribune’s special bicentennial
supplements a “gold mine of information on old Queens.”....
A blast ripped apart the main terminal
building at LaGuardia Airport, killing 11 people and injuring 58.
The airport was a target of a bomb
inside the baggage area of TWA’s lower concourse. The tragedy
left a large portion of the terminal in rubble and, because anyone could
have been in the building at the time of the blast, passenger lists were
of no help in identifying the dead. After years of intensive
investigations, it was never discovered whether the bomb was intended to
go off in flight or if the terminal was the target. Although police
investigators suspected a Croatian terrorist group, the culprits were
bombing of a La Guardia Airport terminal left 11 people dead,
58 people injured, and parts of the terminal in rubble. The
Trib's Jan. 6 front page documented the tragedy, which was
believed to be a terrorist attack.
The Tribune started a bi-weekly
publication called the “College Point Tribune,”
covering the news of that shorefront community. The paper also launched
a campaign to save the Pomonok Community Center in Flushing from being
More than 1,200 people turned out to
welcome Washington Senator Henry (Scoop) Jackson to the Forest
Hills Jewish Center. Jackson received the support of Queens County
Leader Donald Manes in his bid for the Democratic nomination for
president in 1976....
Calling it a sell-out and a blow to the
bicentennial revolutionary spirit, local politicians blasted the
secretary of transportation for giving the okay for the French-British SST
Concord supersonic jet plane to begin landing at JFK Airport....
The Tribune publicly blasted
Congressman Ben Rosenthal for quietly permitting $530,000 in
demolition funds to be allocated to tear down the U.S. Pavilion
in Flushing Meadows. While Rosenthal had always said he was in favor of
saving the $14 million structure for community and cultural use, the
funds were awarded by Congress without public hearings....
Tribune expose led the March 5 issue, telling the story
of a Flushing civic leader who believed her kids were the
target of the infamous murders of Alice Crimmins children, and
that the murders were vengeance killings.
Over 1,000 automobiles jammed the
roadways of Kennedy Airport, slowing traffic for two hours, in a
protest against trial landing rights granted to the Concord supersonic
jetliner....The Tribune initiated an award for Queens
championships in high school basketball. The first “Queens
Tribune Cup” was presented to Long Island City High School at
the Queens College gymnasium after LIC won over Andrew Jackson High
City Councilman Matthew Troy, the
former Queens Democratic county leader who correctly picked his
party’s nominee for president four years before, endorsed former
Georgia Governor Jimmy Carter in a press conference with Carter
at the PanAm Motor Inn in East Elmhurst....
The Flushing Remonstrance,
Queens’ own Declaration of Independence, returned to the county of its
origin in April in a prelude to the upcoming bicentennial celebration.
The Remonstrance, exhibited at the Queens Museum’s exhibition
on Queens History, “The Tulip and the Rose,” was signed in
1657 by the leading citizens of Flushing, calling for religious freedom.
Normally housed at the state capitol in Albany, its return gave Queens
residents their first opportunity to see a significant forerunner to our
nation’s Bill of Rights....
A giant bicentennial festival was
held at Flushing Meadows in June. A highlight of the event was a large
full-scale mock Revolutionary War battle, witnessed by 30,000
spectators. Tribune “combat reporter” Michael Campbell
and intrepid photographer Joe Ullman presented a colorful
centerfold account of the battle....
The New York Press Association awarded
the Tribune first place in New York State for the paper’s
Flushing Town Hall
officially re-opened as a restaurant with a theater. Stephen Phillips,
the proprietor, granted a lease on the Civil War-era landmark, restored
the once-abandoned building to its original look and built a theater
upstairs in the old courtroom....
and future Trib editor David Oats unveiling the 1976
bicentennial edition with then-Mayor Abe Beame.
The Forest Hills Tennis Stadium
once again planned to hold major concerts, and Neil Diamond
performed in the summer.
The Tribune concluded its special
series of bicentennial supplements with the issue of July 2, 1976
– two days before America’s 200th birthday....
Angry merchants along Steinway Street
in Astoria blocked traffic during a weekday rush hour in August to
protest plans for a major shopping center to be built on the nearby
former site of a post office. They said the center would present unfair
competition to the Steinway Street merchants....
Prior to the annual U.S. Open at the Forest
Hills Tennis Stadium, the RFK Pro-Celebrity Tennis Tournament was
held, pitting teams of professional tennis players against celebrities. Arnold
Schwarzenegger, was introduced during lunch at the stadium’s
terrace to the daughter of one of the Kennedys – Maria Shriver....
Senatorial candidate Daniel Patrick
Moynihan got together with Tribune editors for a September
discussion about his upcoming race against incumbent Senator James
The Downtown Flushing Development
Corporation was formed, to help stem a perceived growing
deterioration in the central Queens shopping-transportation district....
Under new citywide redistricting, local
Community Board 7 lost Bay Terrace, which was placed into Board
11. The Tribune endorsed Jimmy Carter for president in late
October. Carter, standing with Governor Hugh Carey, Mayor Abraham Beame
and Borough President Donald Manes, smilingly accepted the Trib’s
endorsement from publisher Gary Ackerman at Antun’s restaurant in
Three men, including one Queens resident,
were arrested in October at Kennedy Airport for allegedly
planning the biggest heist in history. Robert Groh, former deputy
borough president and sanitation commissioner, who was recently elected
a Queens civil court judge, was indicted on charges of engineering an
alleged bribe scheme, in order to obtain campaign contributions from ITT
in exchange for a zoning variance for a Queens hotel at LaGuardia
Airport. Groh pleaded “not guilty” to the charge of selling tickets
to a Donald Manes fundraiser in exchange for the variance. Groh
was later exonerated; however, rumors were rampant throughout Queens’
political circles that the real target of the investigation had been
Manes, but that authorities could not completely prove their case....
marshals were investigating whether
or not a massive explosion at the American Chicle Company in Long
Island City, which killed one worker, was an accident. Forty-eight
other workers were injured in the early Sunday morning blast....
Federal and city officials met in
December and gave their support to a plan to save the abandoned old Paramount-Astoria
The Tribune presented a major
exposé offering a new angle on the famous Alice Crimmins case,
in which a Kew Gardens Hills mother was accused of murdering her two
children in 1964. A Tribune investigation uncovered evidence that
the murders may have been vengeance killings.