A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006. Now a Popeyes fast food restaurant on Google Maps.

Recent entries:
“Online flirting is all fun and games until someone buys a plane ticket” (5/27)
“Only in America can you get arrested for feeding the homeless & be sentenced to community service” (5/27)
“In Texas, the shortest distance between two points is likely under construction” (5/27)
“New York is the only town where the shortest distance between two points is under construction” (5/27)
Entry in progress—BP (5/26)
More new entries...

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Entry from April 10, 2022
“Oh beautiful for spaceship skies” ("America the Beautiful” mondegreen)

"Oh beautiful for spaceship skies” is a mondegreen of “Oh beautiful for spacious skies,” the opening line in the patriotic hymn “America the Beautiful.” The misheard lyric has been cited in print since at least 1953.

Wikipedia: America the Beautiful
America the Beautiful” is a patriotic American song. Its lyrics were written by Katharine Lee Bates and its music was composed by church organist and choirmaster Samuel A. Ward at Grace Episcopal Church in Newark, New Jersey.

Wikipedia: Mondegreen
A mondegreen /ˈmɒndɪɡriːn/ is a mishearing or misinterpretation of a phrase in a way that gives it a new meaning. Mondegreens are most often created by a person listening to a poem or a song; the listener, being unable to hear a lyric clearly, substitutes words that sound similar and make some kind of sense. American writer Sylvia Wright coined the term in 1954, writing that as a girl, when her mother read to her from Thomas Percy’s 1765 book Reliques of Ancient English Poetry, she had misheard the lyric “layd him on the green” as “Lady Mondegreen” in the fourth line of the Scottish ballad “The Bonny Earl of Murray”.

22 June 1953, Detroit (MI) Free Press, “In Radio Character” by Bettelou Peterson, pg. 41, col. 6:
Modern Youth Note
KATE SMITH is the recipient of a fan letter from a worried mother. Said the writer: “I wish you would sing ‘America the Beautiful,’ because I am worried about the patriotism of my three-year-old son. I heard him singing the song this morning, and he was saying, ‘ Oh, beautiful for space-ship skies’.”

18 December 1958, Eastern Montana Clarion (Ryegate, MT), pg. 3, col. 6:
After teaching her second graders “America the Beautiful,” the teacher listened while they sang it for her. And one voice rang out above the rest: “O’ beautiful for spaceship skies.”!—Batseville (Ark.) Guard.

Google Books
Audiovisual Methods in Teaching
By Edgar Dale
New York, NY: Holt, Rinehart and Winston
Pg. 60:
Children may sing, “Oh, beautiful for spaceship skies.”

14 June 1991, Charlotte (NC) Observer, “Family Circus” comic strip by Bil Keane, pg. 4E, col. 1:
(A young girl is shown singing.—ed.)
“Oh Beautiful for spaceship skies...”

Google Groups: alt.humor
Higher Source 1
Keith E. Sullivan
Apr 22, 1997, 3:00:00 AM

Oh, beautiful for spaceship skies
There’s nothing left to gain
For purple shrouded casualties
On this here astral plane


Oh, Nike shod Beneath our bods
So lest you think we blew it
The pudding cups, we lapped them up
While chanting once “Just Do It”


I think the fare to go up there
Is just a bit too high.
It’s not five bucks. The thing that sucks
Is that you first must die.


Google Books
A Book of Mishearings

By J. A. Wines
London, UK: Michael O’Mara Books Limited
Pg. ?:
‘O beautiful, for spacious skies’
Oh beautiful, for spaceship skies’

Heather Scott
So happy to celebrate America and my spaceship skies 🚀🇺🇸. Thanks for the fun cartoon
4:15 PM · Jul 3, 2020·Twitter for iPhone

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityMusic/Dance/Theatre/Film/Circus • Sunday, April 10, 2022 • Permalink