Plainfield, need a little history aro...
JRR

Garwood, NJ

#85 Sep 18, 2012
My family owned the Pickwick Deli for a few years in the late '40's - a golden age for Plainfield, from what I am told. Teppers, Hahnes, the Strand Theater, etc... all places I never visited but seem to know from family stories. My family lived on Tate Court, first, and then Fayette Place - a dead end that ends at the football field. It's a shame the center of Plainfield is not the commercially attractive place it was but many of the residential sections (Sleepy Hollow, Netherwood, Crescent Ave. Historical) are safe and thriving.
Dewey

Manasquan, NJ

#86 Apr 25, 2013
Bill Garrett wrote:
<quoted text>
Janet,
It was called the "Candy Shoppe" to my recollection, and was near to Meyer's liquor store, and Martin's shoes, perhaps next to Sobel's. I have researched my 1950 vintage photos of that block, and it wasn't there back then, but many of the shops had changed names by the 1960's, and one of them must have become the one your looking for. You may be right, but I remember the soda fountain being on the right side, with traditional wire backed fountain chairs, tables along the left side, and more in a back room, where lunch was served by the old ladies running the shop. We used to go there for chocolate ice cream sodas, and chocolate covered cherries that were home made.(Got sick on the sugar overload)! It was a wonderful old fashioned fountain.
....Bill you're right...It was the candy shop and the apothecary built in was on the right...My mom took us there all the time ...Remember when all the servers wore pastel handkerchiefs that matched their aprons....That old oak piece would be worth a fortune by nw.
Bill Garrett

Milford, NJ

#87 Apr 26, 2013
Dewey was my paternal grandmother's maiden name. the Deweys were from New York city in the late 1800's, and probably Ireland not long before that.
ed p

Smithtown, NY

#88 Aug 1, 2013
Bill Garrett 66 PHS wrote:
There was no other place to eat in that first block north of seventh St. except Stires bakery, then the Park Tea Room (formerly called Galane's). The next place was up at Fifth on Park, called Nancy's. I've also heard it called MaryAnne's, giving rise to the greasers who went there being called "Mary-anners". Don't forget the Pickwick Deli was just south of Park and Seventh.
Isn't your class having a joint reunion with '60 soon?
Bill Garrett resurgam01@aol.com
you were a plfd cop
ed p

Smithtown, NY

#89 Aug 1, 2013
you werere aplfd cop
ed p

Smithtown, NY

#90 Aug 1, 2013
you were a plfd cop
Lisa

Evergreen, CO

#91 Aug 13, 2013
I grew up in Plainfield, worked at Tepper's as a teen and remember the Clara Louise Tea room across the street. I also worked at Lichee's Restaurant and later at Two Guys from Italy. I remember Kinderhook Creek playing at the Old Straw Hat. I'll never forget Miss Kropsinski, my kindergarden teacher and Mrs. Pilger, my fourth grade teacher at Barlow School. I had crushes on Gary Crook and Neil Slater. Ahhhh memories.
M clair

Northampton, PA

#92 Sep 1, 2013
Elizabeth Faraone wrote:
I was born in 1962 and grew up in Plainfield. After integration and white flight, I think Plainfield was better, not worse. I enjoyed my classmates. We had lots of fun. African Americans are the spice of life and have contributed more to this world than you will ever know.


Ya right guess u haven't been back lately Like 30 of u"s bet to deaf
a cop with a shooping cart & shot Him with his Gun ( Officer Gleason ) Must be bad SPICE TO DO THAT to a cop ! Now boarded up houses most areas ! Oh Ya another Cop BUZACK was also beaten and Shot
Not safe to wald in most ares anymore Both of them were my school mate's dad's What Cowards I know it was the work of a few that came to Plfd from Newark To start the Roits Is that How U want to remember Plfd ?
Brad

Ashburn, VA

#93 Sep 5, 2013
My family owned strand jewelers from 1966 to 2003. Lot of great memories at my first job. Anyone remember our store?
Will

New Kensington, PA

#94 Sep 6, 2013
Brad wrote:
My family owned strand jewelers from 1966 to 2003. Lot of great memories at my first job. Anyone remember our store?
Where was that, Brad? I remember the first time I looked at downtown Plainfield on Google Maps, the jewelry store where I bought my first girlfriend a ring was one of the only businesses still in existence. It was on the south side of East Front Street between Watchung and Park, close to where the Surprise Store used to be. Was that Strand?
1965lynn

Manchester, ME

#95 Dec 26, 2013
This all brings back such good memories! I remember Front Street on Thursday nights when so many of us were into the English Look and loved the Beatles and the Stones. My family and I lived in various apartments in Plainfield, Third Place, Prospect Avenue, and then First Place. I worked in Brook's Records from 1966 - 1968 and absolutely loved it. Does anyone remember a little teen club called Leon's? It was downstairs from some restaurant or something. I graduated from PHS in 1965 and left Plainfield around 1969 or so to work in NYC and then moved to Europe. But I still remember Plainfield and the kids I used to know with great fondness.
Will

Hancock, MD

#96 Dec 26, 2013
Lynn, we would undoubtedly recognize each other, as I was in Brooks' at least once a week to buy records between '66 and '68--more like every Saturday and every Thursday night. I'm younger, though, so we wouldn't have known each other in school. I graduated PHS in '69.
Bill Garrett

Verona, NJ

#97 Dec 27, 2013
1865Lynn..It was the "Hideaway Room". I still have my membership card.
Check out "I grew up in Plainfield" on facebook. My brother Jim lives outside Portland in Hollis.
1965lynn

Manchester, ME

#98 Dec 28, 2013
Hi Will and Bill,
Yes, Will, we probably do know each other from back then. I remember just walking up and down Front Street with kids who came into the store. Sometime we all would walk right across town to that other record and music store, Gregory's and back again. Lot's of little local bands would come into Gregory's because I believe they sold guitars and instruments and of course sheet music. I remember seeing some members from the Myddle Class once or twice. They were such a good band for a local outfit.
Bill, so it was the Hideaway? I wonder where I got Leon's - could the owner or manager have been called Leon? Maybe I'm thinking of some other place altogether. I'm just getting used to facebook and I will look up "I grew up in Plainfield". That will be fun. Thanks, both of you, for your replies!
Will

Hancock, MD

#99 Dec 28, 2013
Yes, Lynn - I frequently went down to Gregory's, too. More to see people than anything else. I bought nearly all of my records at Brooks'. Mr. and Mrs. Brooks were the nicest people, and I just couldn't go anywhere else to buy records--maybe Korvette's sometimes up on the highway--but otherwise, it was Brooks' for Records.
Bill Garrett

Verona, NJ

#100 Dec 30, 2013
Lynn,
The Hideawy room was in a deli called "Leon's". At first it was in a narrow back room, and local talent would come and play folk music. There was no organization to speak of. Word spread, and it got crowded, so they moved it downstairs. Bill Glass managed it. His wife, Geri, had a dance studio up on the corner of Front and Somerset St. I do not know why it eventually closed, but it may have been a zoning thing. I do remember going in to the village,after an evening at the Hideaway room. Some of the same performers would be doing the same acts there.
1965lynn

Manchester, ME

#101 Dec 30, 2013
Ah, Bill, that explains it. I knew I remembered Leon's. Now that you mention it I do vaguely remember that one of the owners or managers was a dancer. I used to always go in to the Village too but I mostly headed for the rock clubs instead of the folk music. I liked them both but rock won out in the end. I still remember my first Stones concert at the Academy of Music on November 6th 1965. I am still a major Stones fan.

Will, I agree with you. Almost all of my records came from Brooks and I only bought at Gregory's (very rare) if Brooks was sold out. I had forgotten all about Korvette's up on the highway! I then remembered a big store called Two Guys from Harrison. Do you remember that? I think my first all my own stereo came from there. Whatever happened to Mr. and Mrs. Brooks? Did they eventually retire and sell the store? I remember they had a little boy - they really were the best people. I loved pulling old blues records from the stacks to be sent to England for mail-orders. I became pen pals with quite a few English boys that way! You could do it then but today I probably would be arrested!
S Graves

Brooklyn, NY

#102 Jan 17, 2014
So, I have been trying to think of the name of the store that used to be on the corner of Watchung Avenue and Front Street on the top floor. I used to buy Indian prints from there.
Dawn

Elkhart, IN

#103 Jan 19, 2014
Response:
Thanks for answering a question I have been thinking about. My husband and I were talking about hamburger places when we were in high school. Could not remember the place on south ave - Carroll's! I remember when it opened, think burgers were like 19 cents. I was in Plfd HS the day the riot broke out there in the auditorium. School closed for at least a week and we almost did not graduate that year - 1969. It was terrible coming back. People who had been friends for years did not even talk to each other. Have not been back for over 35 years so not sure what is going on there now... Dawn
Will wrote:
I lived in Plainfield until 1969, when I went away to college; my family stayed until just after my mother died in '77. She wasn't going to be chased out of her home and her neighborhood (W. 8th near Monroe Avenue), but my father moved to Edison not long after she died.
I had two friends who lived on Belvedere, Bill and Clifford Owings, and Steve Loiseaux was a FOF, Peter Saunders, who lived on Rahway Road. I knew lots of people all over town really.
It's sad everyone moved away like that. You know? Nobody HAD to move. The 1969 "riot" was like a blip in time and space. Everyone could have stayed, and moved on from there, not out of there.
I only went to Plainfield schools my last two years, but I ate breakfast or lunch at the Park Avenue Tea Room almost every day until I got my driver's license. Then all the cool kids wanted to go to Carroll's (sp?), a pre-McDonald's burger joint on South Avenue near Sam's.
And I went downtown on Thursday nights and Saturdays. I was a big record collector and I had to hit Brooks Records at least once a week. Hey, it was the time of the Beatles and the Stones, and Motown. Can't go record shopping anymore.
I only went to Gruning's on Sundays. Edna sounds real familiar, but I may be conflating her and Gladys at the Park Ave Tea Room.
Did they ever fill in that Park-Madison Project that was nothing but a parking lot where they tore down a bunch of businesses?
I have dreams where I'm shopping on E. Front Street and I don't recognize anything because it's turned into some horrible nightmare scenario from a Bruce Springsteen song. Hey, "My Hometown," right?
Will

Hancock, MD

#104 Jan 19, 2014
Dawn wrote:
Response:
Thanks for answering a question I have been thinking about. My husband and I were talking about hamburger places when we were in high school. Could not remember the place on south ave - Carroll's! I remember when it opened, think burgers were like 19 cents. I was in Plfd HS the day the riot broke out there in the auditorium. School closed for at least a week and we almost did not graduate that year - 1969. It was terrible coming back. People who had been friends for years did not even talk to each other. Have not been back for over 35 years so not sure what is going on there now... Dawn
<quoted text>
I was there that day, too, Dawn. I was already outside, across the street smoking, when this enormous wave of humanity flooded its way out of the building. My girlfriend Laura and our friend Lynn and I left ASAP for Laura's house on Kensington, as she lived the closest. I didn't stick around, and I didn't go to the Park Avenue Tearoom, which would have been my usual thing to do.

I had a black friend, Valerie, who'd hung out with us (mostly whites) at the Tea Room. She went there that day and some particularly nasty people threw her out, called her names. Some time afterwards, she accused me of being "one of those people down at the Tea Room who called me a n***** b****." I could hardly convince her I hadn't been there that day, but I hadn't.

I never went back to the Tea Room after that. It turned into the Concerned Citizens of Plainfield -- no, wait, it was SOC, for Save Our Children. I was glad to get away from Plainfield around then.

I can't remember anyone named Dawn. Which part of town did you live in?

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