ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — This week in New York history features the Empire State Building opening, the founding of the University of Albany, and the opening of Belmont Park. All information has been provided by the New York State Museum History Department.

Aerial photo of the Empire State Building under construction circa 1930 (Getty Images).

May 1

  • 1896: Mark W. Clark, an American general during World War II and the Korean War, and the youngest lieutenant general in the U.S. Army, is born in Sackets Harbor.
  • 1885: First May Day demonstration in Union Square, New York City with a massive strike in support of the eight-hour workday.
  • 1901: Pan American Exposition opens in Buffalo.
  • 1931: Empire State Building opens.
  • 1933: Dorothy Day publishes the first issue of The Catholic Worker.

May 2

  • 1945: Supreme Court Justice Robert H. Jackson of Jamestown is appointed Chief U.S. Prosecutor at the Nuremberg War Trials.

May 3

Flying down the homestretch at Belmont Park, Secretariat, with Ron Turcotte up, thunders home the winner in the Belmont Stakes to become the first Triple Crown winner in 25 years (Getty Images).
  • 1927: Francis E.J. Wilde of Meadowmere Park patents the electric sign flasher.

May 4

  • 1626: Peter Minuit becomes director-general of New Netherlands.
  • 1847: The New York State Legislature creates the Board of Commissioners of Immigration to regulate immigration.
  • 1905: Belmont Park race track in Elmont opens.

May 5

Exterior view of Carnegie Hall, New York City on May 23, 1971 (Getty Images).
  • 1814: The British attack the American forces at Fort Ontario in Oswego.
  • 1891: Music Hall is dedicated in New York City. It was later renamed Carnegie Hall.
  • 1901: The first Catholic mass for night workers is held at the Church of St. Andrew in New York City.
  • 1906: Eastman Johnson, painter and co-founder of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, dies in New York City.
  • 1955: “Damn Yankees” opens on Broadway.
  • 1991: Carnegie Hall marks its 100th anniversary.

May 6

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  • 1835: James Gordon Bennett, Sr. publishes the first issue of the New York Herald.

May 7

  • 1827: Murder of John Whipple at Cherry Hill mansion in Albany.
  • 1844: New York State Normal School is founded. It is the oldest component of SUNY. Today it is called the University at Albany.
  • 1947: Development of Levittown begins on Long Island.