Another Newark Memory

by Florence Rose Colandro


I was born in 1945 & grew up in Newark when it was a wonderful place to live. As stated on a previous post I grew up at 66 Madison Avenue in the South Ward. The house I lived in was burned down to the ground much later when we lived in North Newark. When I read it in the paper I got a lump in my throat.

Every Sunday we attended Blessed Sacrament Church which is where I made my confirmation at 11 years of age. My father worked many years in the Fairmount Cemetery on Central Avenue in Newark where my cousins & I used to go hang out and read the epitaphs on the headstones. This was when it was a safe place to be. I am sure there were bad people back then but not as prevalent as today.

I was one of the first students to attend Clinton Place Junior High when it was just built. It was a beautiful school. I'm not sure if it is still there. Prior to that I went to Avon Avenue Elementary School where we would jump rope (double dutch) at lunch recess.

I remember joining the "Pioneer Girls" at a protestant church on Clinton Avenue where my friend Ruthie worshipped. It was a version of the girl scouts I think. We had picnics & other good times.

One of my best memories is of the snow storms we used to get back then. As soon as my father got home from a hard days work at the cemetery & had eaten his "supper" (now we call it dinner) he would get out the old beaten up red radio flyer sled & my cousin who lived on Jelliff Avenue & I would bundle up & my father would pull us through the streets of the south ward. I remember how quiet & muffled every sound was after a big snow storm. I still love the snow, but even the weather patterns have changed. Sledding down Madison Avenue was great because it was a very big hill. It probably wasn't, but when you are a child everything is magnified.

Also back then we had no phone, no car & not much money but we were never bored & did not know that we were "poor". I really miss those times. I think most people do.


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