Growing up in the West Ward

by Jule Spohn


Hello every one. I grew up and spent all of my childhood years in the West Ward around West Side High School. From the day I was born till I was in the 7th Grade I lived at 397 and 393 South Orange Avenue which was at the corner of 12th Street. After that we moved around the corner to 332 South 12th Street which was near 13th Avenue till I went into the Marine Corps in June of 1960. St. Antoninus was my Parish there and I was an altar boy and a school crossing guard during my 7th and 8th grades of school at St. Antoninus. Spent most of my childhood playing in West Side High School Playground and the Boys Club down on Littleton Ave and 13th Avenue. Have many memories of this area. One of the special places in this area was, and still is, is the Monastery of St. Dominick on 13th Ave and 10th Street where the nuns live in a "cloister" setting and never come outside but live a life of silence and prayer inside. We had the actual water Reservoir on South Orange Ave between 9th and 7th Streets; the original Reservoir and the original Jimmy Buffs hot dog stores on 9th Street and 14th Ave; and the Roscommon House which was famous for it's huge sandwiches and shrimps. On the corner of 12th Street and South Orange Avenue we had Terry's Sweet Shoppe and the Strand Theater, which was later turned into Manzi's men's clothing store. Some of my childhood friends from this area are Bob Pulcine, Louis "Butchie" Pizzano, George Hahn, Joe Gillespie, Bob Hughes, Johnnie Bost, John Insabella, and Joey Palmasano. Natalie Puglisi lived next door.

Email this memory to a friend.
Enter recipient's e-mail: