My father was a soda jerk and my mother
a cashier at Lofts at Broad and Market in the late 1930s and until
1941 when the U.S. entered WWII.
I knew Lofts in the late 1940s and the 1950s when it was primarily
a candy store. What impressed me as a little kid was being able
to go in one door on Broad St. and come out the other on Market.
I didn’t remember much else about it. But in later years my
dad said that I missed what was really impressive about Loft’s,
that it was much more than the candy store that I remember. He told
me that Loft’s was actually in a five- or six-story structure
with different levels for dining rooms and restaurants and an especially
popular tea room.
Dad had a talent for being a story-teller but I often didn’t
know if he was embellishing or reciting facts. So I went to Newark
in 1990 to see the building where Lofts once reigned. The entire
building was in a state of disrepair and partly occupied by some
discount stores and partly boarded up. In one of the upstairs windows,
I could see the distinctive “L” from the Loft’s
logo, still etched in the glass of one of the windows.
Haven’t been back to Newark since then, so don’t know
whether the building that housed Loft’s still stands.