Clinton Hill Section 1944-1951

by Gordon Keister


I lived at 751 Hunterdon Street between Runyon Ave and Bigelow Street. I also lived in other sections of Newark when I was younger, my best memories are of the Clinton Hill section. I went to Bergen Street School and South Side High School. After graduating from South Side I entered the US NAVY For 4 years during the Korean War and never lived in Newark again.

I did spend 32 years working at Newark International Airport for 32 years, so I guess I never really did leave after all. I remember in grammar school we formed a boys club called the COMETS and we challenged other teams to baseball, football and basketball games. We stayed together and we were invited to play against one of Staten Islands American Legion Teams (which was big deal in those days) at Weisglass Stadium before 5000 people. I guess we had a pretty good team as most of us made the High School Team. We also played PAL baseball from the local police station.

Our world was Clinton Ave from the 3 corners up to the Roosevelt Movie House and over to Beth Israel Hospital and down to Weequahic Park. Our main transportation besides Public Service Busses were our feet and we sure made good use of them walking the neighborhoods. Besides all the great eating places that have been mentioned elsewhere, our favorite spot was hanging out at "The Emps" which was our corner grocery store. Fred Weisbart was the owner and he was the greatest to put up with us. We called Fred's store the EMPS for emporium. We formed a Basketball team and called it The EMP-FIVE and played against local churches and the Weequahic High School young adult league. Although Fred never could afford to sponsor us he took a real interest in our games. After I came back from the service, I heard Fred was murdered in his store for $10 or $20 dollars...WHAT A WASTE....will continue in the future.....


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