The column that asks who allowed out-of-town posters to be placed in empty store windows in downtown Bridgeton to make it look like the Bronx — not one, not 10, but maybe 25, but Steven Paul, the man with two first names, was gracious enough to tell us the empty stores on the southside of North Laurel Street can be had for $130,000 or less, so let’s form a community investment group and buy the whole string, refurbish them and market them at a profit big enough to buy the other side of the street and do the same thing.
By Jack Hummel
Radio: 92.1 FM WVLT Saturdays noon to 2 p.m.
U.S. Army: RA`13815980
Google all columns at jackhummelblog
Zoo billboards are up!
Billboards that announce the Cohanzick Zoo. Good for the business administrator! They’ll find the money to make it legal. Cab you say CCIA?
We know what is wrong with both downtown Bridgeton history and our Saturday radio program — it’s the same thing.
Lack of names. That’s what is wrong with high-powered regional newspapers as opposed to simple local ones — no local names. People like to see their name in the newspaper, whether it be in an agate boxscore for the 11-year-old or mom’s society club.
You can’t replace that with crime stats, 100-inch stories on illegal drugs — nobody finishes reading 100-inch stories — and everybody else’s problems.
That’s what we need on our radio program. In 1982, at the Philadelphia Bulletin, the most popular writer on the staff did nothing but type names all day long into a tidbits column.
It was the most read piece in the daily paper.
So who doesn’t like their name mentioned on the radio? When is the last time we mentioned Deanna Speranza-Murphy? Peggy Gentile-Van Meter? Verna Herman? Shaun Connors? Jim Quinn? John Daddario, Carman Daddario, Willie Daddrio?
Paul Ritter III? Jonas King? Amos Lapp? Diana Sorelle? Alexis Seeley? Dean Dellaquila? Goldie Wulderk? Jane Hemighaus? Eileen Bennett? Billy Sharp? Bob Thompson?
Not only their names but a tidbit about each.
“Hey, I heard your name on the radio Saturday,” one person will tell another.
What has Chris Christie done for us that we should mention his name when Rob Weinstein is cutting a swath through the homeless like Sherman marching to Atlanta?
We mention organizations to help people, but it usually runs for two hours, with no names mentioned. We talk about crime with no names mentioned.
While saying all that, Saturday’s guest sometime after noon — after we mention your name — will be a recovering drug addict who told her story on Facebook and we will hang on every word she says until Alex Calabrese calls and says shoot all drug dealers, and we’ll go from there.
As for downtown history, the failure is not mentioning names, not putting the stories out there.
Who knew Dill’s first name, as in Dill’s Seafood? Who knows the history of the Bartram building on North Laurel Street? Why does the huge, corner building say “Feinstein?”
Who knew the McGear building was the largest dry goods store south of Trenton at one time? McGear building? Yeah, Thompson Plaza?
That’s what Bridgeton Main Street is missing. But Sam Feinstein is here to fill in the gaps.
“I did a little research on the ‘Bartram Building,’ located at 26 N. Laurel Street. (It is not the ‘Bertram Building’ as you called it.)
“The first mention I found said that the Iron Molders’ Union met in the building on the first and third Wednesday of the month in 1901. This is probably a fair guess of the age of the building. Perhaps it is from the 1890’s.
“My GUESS is that the top floor was a hall or meeting room used by various organizations. I know that a couple of other buildings were constructed that way. The top floor was an open hall. The second floor was used for office space and the ground floor was used for retail.
“”I have found a succession of activities located in the Bartram Building over the past 90 years in Polk’s city directories.
“1924: The Bartram Building had a branch site of Gorsen & McCormick produce (The main store was located at 66-68 S. Laurel Street. It was owned by Percy Gorsen and Clarence B. McCormick).
“Dill’s Seafood was also on the first floor. William F. Dill was the proprietor. Along with those establishments, Kate Long owned a department store. Her husband, Ellsworth Long, had his law office in the building. I would guess that it was located on the second floor.
“The 1947, 1956, and 1964 directories call the building the ‘Tewah Building,’ the home of the Red Man’s Hall. In 1956, the lodge is referred to as ‘Tewah Lodge No. 197,’ the ‘Improved Order of Red Men’ along with the ‘Pocohantas Lodge.’
“In 1947 and 1956, Gorsen & McCormick and Dill’s Seafood were still in the retail part of the building.
“In the 1960’s, the upstairs meeting room was used by a Girl Scout unit.
“In 1964, the retail establishment was May’s Women’s Clothing, managed by Mrs. Lillian M. Saggione.
“In 1977, the Western Auto Store was in the building.
“In 1986, the Bartam Building was home to the Calmart Variety Store.”
— Sam Feinstein
We remember that sometime after 1968, somebody went up to the third floor and saw it was littered with lottery tickets, plus some Red Man’s memorabilia.
We have to get the damn rotted plywood off the beautiful second- and third-story windows downtown. And why does the old Stanley’s Deli (the pink elephant) have be covered with plywood, anyway? Do cars stopped at the Washington Street light like to throw bricks through the window?
Nothing says nothing like plywood-covered windows. It is second only to graffiti. Speaking of graffiti, the abandoned gas station on Washington Street next to Trolley Barn Custard has it on the side.
You want to do something big, Flavia, form a Community Development Corporation and get rid of the out-of-town business landlords.
Joe Blandino? Bahri Yilmez? Bruce Riley? Tommy Seeley? Angie Edwards? George Linen? Sherman Denby? “Boom Boom” Baker? Tom Lane? Jean Nocon? Joan McAllister? Dave Rogers?
“Thanks for reposting your 2013 interview about Randy (Pepsi Pete). I hope his family can get the money raised for funeral expenses.”
— Karen Dunfee Cox
Oh, no, not another funeral expense unable to be paid!
We’re back on the radio, thanks to United Advocacy Group.
Thanks for all who care. We promise to mention your name.
YOU CAN BOOK IT: Hey, Steven Paul, it’s OK to design that sign for the former Ashley-McCormick building, and soon there will be signs all over the city, although nobody may tell you that, but only one — count ’em — one person is going to get credit for them.