Newark Memories

by Ruth Harris


I lived near Peshine and Hawthorne Ave. in the early forties.

I went to Peshine Ave. school, which was across from St. Charles, where we went to church. We used to eat knishes Jimmy Buffs Hot dogs and Watson bagels. There were horse drawn wagons selling watermelons, and collecting rags and junk. The coal truck would put a chute into the cellar window, and we'd watch the coal fill the bins, we'd pick up pieces of coal and write on the sidewalk with them. Also, we liked when the ice man delivered ice. We'd eat chunks of it to cool us off.

We always had friends to play with. We'd be outside all day, and in the evenings, our parents would come out on the porches to get a little air and talk, while we ran around, playing tag, or another game we invented.

The apartments were stifling in the summer. There were all nationalities in the neighborhood. We didn't know anything about prejudice. A special treat for us, would be every year, they had soap box races right down Hawthorne Ave. The boys built the cars from whatever junk they could find. Sometimes, the wheels would fall off, but it was all in fun!

We had clip on roller skates which required a skate key. Sometimes they were so worn out that the wheels had holes in them, but we kept going. The boys made scooters from old milk crates with skate wheels on them. Also, they'd find any old wheels and make wagons. Only the "rich " kids from the nicer neighborhoods, had store bought toys. We made the most of our own. We had big snowball fights in winter, building snow forts for protection.

We could buy a bag of penny candies at "Bilsky's" candy store on the corner of Hawthorne and Peshine. Does anybody remember eating "charlotte russe". How about the merry ground on a truck? Or the whip on a truck. Olympic Park was one of our favorite places. Especially the big pool.

If anyone can relate to any of the things I've mentioned, I'd love to hear about your memories.


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