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Our Collection of Memories....

  "May you never forget what is worth remembering,
 Or remember what is best forgotten." 

 - An Old Irish Blessing

    Record hops at the Pleasure Beach Ballroom;  The sound the Pleasure Beach Bridge made as you drove across it Read about the bridge; View the bridge ;  All the wonderful rides at Pleasure Beach Amusement Park;  Playing baseball in Newfield Park View ;  Sister Mary Amata from Blessed Sacrament School View her pictureView the school ; The Lincoln School Drum and Bugle Corps;  C&C Pizza on Connecticut Ave;  The Puritan Market, on the corner of Newfield Ave and Clifford Street View ;  Park City Theatre on Stratford Ave;  The Hippadrome Theatre on Stratford Ave View ; Ann's Newfield Bakery on Stratford Ave;  Lupe and Wheels at Yellow Mill Bridge View ;  Driving up and down Main Street on Thursday nights;  Cherry Cokes and chips at Lupe's Drug Store on Stratford Ave;  Hanging out at Brierwoods parking lot up by Beardsley Park View ;  Lester Silverstone;  Eating pizza at the Little Casino on Hallet Street, or Paul's on East Main; the Harding/Central Hop;  the Thanksgiving Day Harding/Central football games;  Friday night football at Hedges Stadium;  Hanging out at "Bunny's" before and after school  View ; the "Snake Dance" before and the victory parade after the Harding/Central Football game;  the yellow flower corsages with a blue "H" you wore to the Thanksgiving Day football game;  Skydel's Department Store on East Main St; "Fogging up" the windows at the Candlelight Drive-in Theater;  the late-night  'submarine races' at Seaside Park View ;  Late-night parking at Beardsley Park;  going to the "Greeks" for hotdogs View (also see the old "Greeks" last day: View);  Here's a link to lots of real  Old Photos of the "Greeks"; getting a great hamburger at Maraczis on Boston Ave;  the Drum and Bugle Corps competitions at Hedges Stadium; Eating at Frankie's Diner;  Record hops on the second floor of the Stratford Avenue VFW just down from East Main Street;  The Colonial Theatre on Boston Avenue;  Gerstle's on Main Street;  Swimming at the PIT at Beardsley Park;  Jenny's Pizza and Edo's on Pembroke Street;  the Crystal Palace on Main Street;  The Globe Theatre;  Coney Island Hot Dogs on Main Street;  The Arctic Sports Store on Arctic Street; Playing football at the Green on Boston Ave.;  The song "A Million to One";  Walking UP the Grant Street hill on the way to Harding; Using "The Bridge was up!" as the reason for getting home late from downtown on Thursday nights; Buying the latest 45's at the H.L. Green record counter; The first swim of the season--usually in March--off the Cilco Docks on Seaview Ave; Walking on I-95 when it was being built through the East-End back in 1956-57; After a snowfall, grabbing on to the back bumper of a car as it went by and 'skiing' down the road; Richie's Ice Creame on Barnum Ave; The Carrousel on Boston Ave near GE; John's Butcher Shop on Ogden St Extension;  Royal Candy; Flo's Variety; Jackie Lynn's; Rocky Vocolla's; Loews Poli Theatre; The Up-to-Date Fish Market on Orchard St.; Berkshire Bakery, KWIK CAFE; The P.T. Barnum Statue and the Howe Statue at Seaside Park View ; The SPA Luncheonette on Stratford Ave; Finney's News Stand on Stratford Ave; Ross Pharmacy; The Bronx Newsroom (also called Red's) at the corner of Stratford and Bishop Aves.; Riccio's Drug Store on the corner of Central and Connecticut Avenues (and there was one at East Main and Barnum Ave); Steve's Market on Newfield Ave; Bonzell's boat dock; Wolverines; Blessed Sacrament Grammar School Drum Corps State Championship (circa 1940 through 1950); Swimming off the "flat rock" at the Rock Breakwater at Pleasure Beach; Pink Spauldeens; High School Football Game Buttons; The annual Halloween window display in Lola's Flower Shop on East Main Street; Hugo, the Newfield Park groundskeeper in the 1950s; The "Little Mount Zion Holy Church of God in Christ" choir 'rock' Eagle Street on Sunday mornings; WICC Radio program "Dick's Den" with announcer Dick Alexander, Phone Edison 4-1000 (Dick died 2/4/2002); Harding High's Mrs. Thompson; Frank's Newsroom; Playing on the rocks at the end of Berkshire Ave and sitting in the Devil's Chair; Jim Murray's Card Store; 10-cent ice creams at Golden's Drug Store; Park City Little League Field on Asylum Street; Augie's News; Riding the Rollercoaster (called the 'Sky Rocket') at Pleasure Beach; "Circus Day" at Seaside Park (always good for another day off from school!); Dancing at the Pleasure Beach Ballroom to 'Lee Williams and the Rockers', an East-End band which included Lee Williams on sax, John Marcinka on bass, Warner Hornak on drums, and Tony Flaro on guitar; Schneider's Shoes (featuring "Buster Brown Shoes"); Candyland; French's Restaurant; Central Hardware; Fred's Market; Huron's Delicatessen; Newfield Bowling Lanes on Union Avenue  View ; Newfield Hardware; the A&P on Fifth Street and Stratford Ave; Connelly's Market on Stratford Ave; Reese's Dry Goods; Swimming around the Bearsley Park dam; Sliding down the dam on scrap pieces of linoleum from behind The Magic Carpet store on Boston Avenue; Diving off the stone bridge at Beardsley; Swimming at "The Pit", even after they dumped a big boulder in the middle of it; "The Quarry", another good fishing and swimming spot; Fishing at "The Flats", which were out back of the wooden roller coaster at Pleasure Beach; "Devil Rocks", across the street from Fusco's Bakery between Pembroke and Orchard Streets - One rock formation shaped like a chair, was called "Satan's Seat" ("Satan's Chair" has also been reported to have been on the rocks at Horace Street); "The Green", a wide strip of grass between Boston Ave, North and South, where sandlot football was played all the time; Sledding down Ogden St. Ext.; Ernie's Confectionary; the Jane St. Library; Walking through Washington Park at night; Summerfield School; How carefree Halloween Trick or Treats were back then; Harding High School's Afternoon Sessions for Freshman; Harding's Mr. Roach; Scavenging empty soda bottles for the 2 cents return deposit; Fishing for "flats" off Pleasure Beach Pier (or worse, renting a leaky rowboat from Parcells  View ); Attending recreation camp and playing baseball at the McKinley School schoolyard during the summer months  View ; Mr. Peter Cybul of the Police Athletic League Obit ; Wilbur Burdge, also a PAL and Connie Mack baseball coach for 18 years, was a Police Dept. Detective for 25 years (passed away June 1992);   Dancing at the American Legion record hops on Wilmot Ave; Marie Brassell (now deceased) who taught at Barnum , Hall , and Summerfield Schools; The Boston Alleys; White's Diner; ACRY Club Duckpin Bowling Lanes (4) on Barnum Ave near Central Ave; Yellow Mill Green; The Hobo jungle next to the freight yards; Cherniak's Grocery store on Sheridan St; JB's Candy store on Ogden St. Ext.; Sy and Lou's on Boston Ave; Hall Oldham who taught at Summerfield; Dancing at Record Hops at the Armory Building on Main Street; The 'Greenwood' Bowling Trophy ; Hubert's Ice Cream Store and Factory on Seaview Ave, between Beardsley and Eagle Streets; Newfield Fish Market; Petersen's Pharmacy on the corner of Stratford and Union Ave View ; Ray and Peg Petersen, the owners of Petersen's Pharmacy View;  If you were a paperboy - remember delivering the evening Bridgeport Post (read a 2001 article about the "East-Enders" website: Read);  Taking the GE bus to Seaside and hearing the transistor radios tuned into WMCA, the "Good Guys", Harry Harrison, Dan Danielson, etc. (sort of "echoed" on the beach); Frankies Diner on Barnum Ave; Zingo's on Granfield Ave; Success Park Village View a map of the complex (click on the lower right hand corner to enlarge); Betty Ann's on Success Ave; CYO Dances (and the trip home on the bus); Baseball games behind Bullard-Havens Tech; Basketball games behind the powerhouse in Success Park (some great talent there); "Charlie the Bum" who roamed all over the East Side, and was rumored to have been wealthy at one time, and an accomplished violinist  View "Charlie the Bum" photo; For those in the East Main & Noble area: Mr. Henry at The Fairway Restaurant, Lola's Flower Shop, Beardley Park Zoo, the monkey house, Taking the 10 North Bpt. bus home, George at the Fairway Gulf, Manny at the Dairy Queen, Mary's Gift shop, Barkers, Huntington Inn, Treeland, Pizza village, Santa's Village (when it was on the lookout), the dam at Bunnells pond, Maraczis, White's Diner, John's Pharmacy, and Fiorito's, Cooper's Auto, Mel Hart's, Monty's Barber Shop, Adomats Deli, Royal Palms (tax on candy!!), The Parkway Dinner (owned by the Baz family) across from Beardsley Park, Jimmy's in Savin Rock for Lobster Rolls, The rag man plodding through the streets with his old wagon and horse:  View the "Rag Man", real name Hyman Charmitz, and read his story. He's shown in this photo along with his horse "Bob" in the late 1940s;  He used to ride his horse drawn cart down the street saying "hey---rags";  Though not the East-End -- the Loews-Poli and the Majestic Theatres, The West End Theatre and the West End Bowling Alley, Zwerdlings and Zeislers bakeries; Drag racing on Fairfield Avenue and the Burma Road, Street sweepers on Main Street. Question: Why was the road going from the East End out to Lordship called the Burma Road? I think it is a corruption of word "BERM" - as you might recall the road was built on the top of a dirt berm bordering the marshlands of Long Island Sound; Watching "WOODY" hawk newspapers on Main Street on Saturday night, Seeing "Cadillac Joe" cruise Main Street on Saturday night in his yellow Caddie convertible,   The Good Humor man when ice cream was cheap and the chocolate coating was THICK!, Coal being delivered to the side of the house and dumped down a chute into your basement, "Garbage men" who walked through your yard with bushel baskets over their back collecting your garbage, Bringing old newspapers for 65 cents/100 lbs. to Tommy's Junk yard down on Central Ave, The ARCADE in downtown Bridgeport, Window shopping Sunday afternoon in downtown Bridgeport since all the stores were closed, HL Greens, Howlands, Woolworths stores in downtown Bridgeport, Every kid you knew had a cap gun, Hitting a roll of caps with a hammer on the sidewalk!, Going to HL Green 5&10 store to buy metal cast toy soldiers for 10 or 15 cents, Fishing off the Pleasure Beach pier for FLAT fish, The Luchinsky butcher shop on Boston Ave (and Kent Ave?);  Who doesn't remember the Central Harding Games in the freezing cold on top of the hill; Going to Pacelli's bakery for bread; Ernie the Cop on the corner of Fairfield and Main Street; Kresge's 5 & 10 - all Hilltoppers went there for coke and french fries after school; Driving up and down the strip (Main St) with your girl and your music blaring on a Thursday night; Conte's at Seaside Park or the Buglight Restaurant; Record Hops on Friday nights at "The Armory"; Ice Skating at Chamberlain's Pond (sneak in thru Cemetery); Ice Cream at Brock Halls; Parking at Beardsley Park and Seaside; The roller coaster at Pleasure Beach; Mayor Levy and his do not remove snow theory; The drag races at the Candlelight View; Father Panik Village; The preps and the hoods; Howland's and Reads were the "big stores" - You had to go to one of THEM to see Santa; The Arcade was the best place to play games, The Mosque was the best place to roller skate and Lowes was the "big theatre"....not a do-it-yourself chain of stores; You took a bus from towns outside of Bridgeport - at age 11 - ALONE; How about WATSONS Department store on East Main St, along with GLADSTEINS and GOLDENS PHARMACY. How about SHOPPERS FAIR PLAZA  View Shoppers Fair; Diamond 1 hardball field at Beardsley Park. Playing baseball in St Augustines Russian Cemetery on Arctic Street, or Lakeview Cemetery. Or St John Nepomucene Grammer school on Jane and Pembroke and around the corner on Arctic St was Saint John the Baptist. How about LUCY's Meat Market, or the Onion Church right across the street (Russian ), Did you ever go to the slaughter house at the end of Asylum St or hear the cows mooing at 2AM on their way there? How about the Knights of Columbus on Asylum and Boston Ave. Dirgo's meat market at Pembroke and Boston. Bednar Motors on Boston, next to the Colonial Theater and Cortigianos Gas Station. How about batting with the label up, or taping a baseball with black electric tape until it got so heavy you couldn't throw it. Who remembers cars with half moon lenses on the headlights during the war? How about the produce man with his horse and carriage? Delivering ice and a card you put in your window showing how many lbs you wanted delivered. How about the White star on a red field that you placed in your window for those soldiers in your family who died in the war. How about walking to 7 churches on Good Friday (or was it Holy Thursday?), St. Ambrose, St Johns, St. Cyril and Methodius, St Marys, St Michaels, Holy Rosary, St Josephs, St Charles. How about going to say the Rosary on WICC and getting a fresh loaf of WONDER BREAD and eating it by the time you walked back home. How about ORCUTT Boys Club, North End Boys Club. Pistey's and Adzimas Funeral Parlors on Washington Park. Dairy Queen on East Main St. Motor Vehicle Dept. East Main St. Who remembers the rock in Old Mill Green Park that read 'XVII Mi to N.H.' How about the tree George Washington tied his horse to and across the street the house he slept in, on Boston and E Main; Walking down East Main Street at night during Holiday time and seeing Christmas light decorations and listening to piped-in Christmas music; Near Ann's Bakery, Blue Ribbon Restaurant, Watsons, and Skydels - does anyone remember the penny candy store next to the Blue Ribbon? (Yes, it was named "Hank's Variety", and Hank purchased it from 2 spinster sisters in the 1950's); Boston Bowling Alleys at Boston and William St.- Geo. Miklus owner, Abe behind the desk, Abe also owned the car wash, "The Time Saver Auto Wash," behind Maraczi's. And Joe Curran the manager and one of the best duckpin bowlers in the country. And the Mechanics and Farmers bank that took over when the bowling alleys closed; Slosar's Sunoco station at Boston and William Streets; Carpenter Steel on Seaview Ave and the red/brown smoke that often traveled all the way to Boston Ave; Lou Licamele's drug store on Boston and Orchard Streets, where we ran in for a glass of water when we were playing football on the green (and where we used to read the comic books in the window until they threw us out);  Across the street was Mickey and John Voloscin's Meat Market where we got boxes in their basement; How about the one tiny barber shop behind the meat market on Orchard St.; Making racing scooters out of a pair of roller skates and an orange crate. The Colonial theater when we went in at noon for cartoons, news, two feature movies and when we got out it was dark - all for 17 cents; And the ice cream cones in the theater that had a tear away paper around the hard but soggy cone; Hitting golf balls at Diamond 1 in Beardsley park to a flat "green" in far left field; Remington Arms and the tall "shot" tower where they used to drop melted copper into a pool of water to make bb's; Making a telephone out of two soup cans and a waxed string; Or making codes and flashing your neighbor with a flashlight and figuring out what they were saying;  The sawdust on the floor at the Mohegan Market; Fishing boats bringing the live catch right to the fish store at the downtown bridge under the RR station; Walking right into the meat coolers at grocery stores to pick out your cut of meat; The bus drivers who would rhythmically keep cranking the change counter on the glass windowed fare box long after the passengers were seated; The pinball arcade at Betty Anne's Bakery on Success Ave; Sneaking into the forbidden "Remington Woods" with your buddies; Father Panik Village (originally named Yellow Mill Village) was named after Father Panik of Saints Cyril and Methodius School (see photo of Father Panik: View);  The Candlelite-Pix Twin Drive-In Theatres located at 110 River St; More info on the "Burma Road" between Bridgeport to Lordship: Read Getting your bicycle tires caught in the abandoned trolley tracks left in the streets. The water shooting into the air at the big cooling spray pond (Stillman's Pond) next to the GE power plant on Boston Ave. (next to Lakeview cemetery). Bridgeport public schools giving the kids a half day off when the Barnum & Bailey circus showed up at Sea Side Park. The Remington Arms self-propelled yellow ammunition train car going up into the Remington woods. Local industrial league baseball games drawing huge crowds [before the TV era]. Selling Christmas cards, and other fund-raiser stuff, door to door as a cub scout. Memorial Day parades with thousands of WWII vets in full dress uniform, proudly marching down Park Ave. Marching with the cub scouts in the same parades. Buying candy at the Success Park power house candy counter operated by the Connecticut Dept. of Education for the Blind. Playing "bendzies" on the ice of the frozen swamp on the way to Edison School (It was a game of "chicken" to see who had the nerve to race across the thin ice last, without falling in). Winter sledding in Beardsley Park, near the ball fields. Political campaign trucks with huge loudspeakers on the roof and they threw candy out to all the kids. Huge lumber vehicles that looked liked an enormous praying mantis with the lumber slung underneath. Wooden crates and street roller skates made into homemade "scooters". The itinerate knife sharpening man with his foot operated grindstone cart. (He went back to Italy and retired well off) Oil tanker trucks dragging big "grounding" chains that clanged down the road making sparks (It was probably more of a hazard than a safety device!) The WWII aircraft spotter's lookout shack on top of the downtown City Trust building. (The shack's steel frame can still be seen up on the building!) Kids wearing the shocking pink or iridescent yellow jackets and shoelaces. Sitting on the old carved up wooden bench in the waiting room of the old Barnum & State (orange buses) bus station. Getting "transfers" to change buses. Going to the public school sponsored "kid's plays" [such as Rumpelstiltskin] at the Kline Memorial. Peeping into the old cast iron, coin operated "nickelodeon" viewers at Pleasure Beach (they were simulated motion pictures generated from mechanical flip cards). The Pez dispenser craze.  The Davy Crockett craze. Freight trains going right down the middle of Seaview Avenue between residential houses on the way to factory loading docks. The big crowds and traffic jams at Hedge's Stadium football games. PAL baseball games. Getting free dinner plate sets at the Colonial Theatre on Boston Ave just for going to the movies. Playing in the waterfalls at Beardsley Park. The big Slavic picnics run by the Sokol Society or the Russian Churches. The end of steam engine power on the New Haven line. Red Cross swimming lessons at Pleasure Beach. The boys "flipping" baseball cards against the wall to see who could get the closest and win the cards. The girls playing "jacks". Saying the Lord's prayer in public school! Certain newsstands getting habitually raided for "booking numbers". Playing "kick the can". The big Columbia bicycles (40+lbs) with huge chrome shock absorber spring on the front. The first "English" bicycles with 3 speeds and hand brakes! Coming home with a large shopping bagful of Halloween candy and going out for a second round! Putting together sandlot baseball games on our own without our parents intervening or fighting. Saving old newspapers for cash. Buying canteens with belts ($2) and tents ($6) at the WWII army surplus store. Picking up the discarded license plate year tags (they were metal tab  not stick-on) and putting them on the spokes of our bicycles. The Scout-O-Rama held at the old Armory (now Cardinal Shehan Center). Camping in 90 Acres Park. Brookside Shopping Center opens and "kills" the downtown shopping trade. The big draw was free parking! ("Downtown" temporarily revives with the opening of the Lafayette Shopping Center). A kid opens the Barnum Theatre emergency door and 20 kids rush in free. Two "big" restaurants in Bridgeport  Ocean Sea Grill and the Fairway (you may have gone out to eat once in 5 years!). The boxy looking International Metro delivery trucks made right here in Bridgeport. Long army truck convoys on the Merritt Parkway, during the Korean War. The post WWII exodus of Bridgeport's industrial might (known then as the arsenal of democracy), beginning with Chance Vought and Singer Sewing machine. Getting two Bpt. newspapers a day  the Telegram (am) and the Post (pm). Let's not forget the Sunday Herald.  Before zip codes we had zones . . . Bridgeport 4, Conn. Party lines  you had to dial 1191 and hang up to call the neighbor who shared your line. Five digit phone numbers, without letters in front. It took 20 minutes to put through a long distance call via the operator. The trailer trucks jamming US1 on Sunday night on the way to Boston, MA [right before I-95 opened]. Remember when they said that the Connecticut Turnpike cost a whopping "one million dollars a mile"  today, you could not do highway site drawings and studies for that price.  You could not shop on Sunday;  remember the first milk carton dispensing machine in front of Betty Anne's bakery?  You could get milk on a Sunday - 25 cents!. The "Big Round Water Fountain" in front of the Jenkins Valves Building, especially at night when they would turn on all the different colored lights, that was Fantastic. Yellow Mill Village, when it was new and beautiful with grass and hedges, and blacks and whites sat on the benches together like a big family. Waltersville Grammar School. Lisi's Grocery Store. Stratford Avenue was just known as "The Avenue".  You always knew the tides by the smells of Johnson's Creek. The C.R.&L. busses went everywhere View. Cruising on Main St. was done on Thursday evenings. Candlelight Stadium had great midget and stock car races View. Learning to swim at the YMCA. Driving out to the Beverly Theatre in Black Rock. Harding High Proms at "Mary Journeys" and at the "Ritz Ballroom". Briarwood Farms. You "knew" that Charlie the Bum was "really" an eccentric millionaire who was jilted by his "one true love." The Ocean Sea Grill on Main street was THE place to go for a lobster dinner with your parents, but only on very special occasions. The Brass Rail and The Pink Elephant (in the Barnum Arcade) were places you had heard about but you were never able to go. Christmas season didn't really start until you went "downtown" to see the window displays at Howland's Department Store and visited Santa there, at Toyland. Howland's cafeteria (in the basement) was where you always ate lunch when you went downtown on the bus with your mother or grandmother. The 5 and 10s where you always got treated to a plastic toy for being good on the CR&L. You knew just which house "General" Tom Thumb lived in. The Train Exchange on Fairfield Avenue (up the street from the old Sears and the Hotel Barnum) was the place to go for additions to your Lionel train set. Springtime meant a ride in the back seat of the family car through Beardsley Park to look at the tulips by the greenhouse. The dogwoods along the Merritt Parkway in Spring warranted another Sunday ride. Jenkins Valve, Singer, Bridgeport Brass, Metropolitan Body, GE, Remington, Bullard's and many, many others. Where have they all gone? The old Humpmobile factory formed a backdrop to the harbor. A roast beef sandwich with your dad at the Windmill was a real treat on a Saturday afternoon (but don't tell mom that you were in a bar). Skipper's and Pop's across the "Burma Road" in Lordship. If you remember taking the trolley there, you are a real old timer !! You knew the fish at the markets on either side of the bridge on Stratford Ave. were fresh since the fishing boats were tied up at a pier just outside. The flashing of the lights at Middleground and Penfield Reef reflected off the Sound on warm summer evenings. Bridgeport's once great industrial base: Singer Sewing Machine, Remington Arms, Dictaphone, Bridgeport Thermostat, General Electic, Harvey Hubble, Jenkins Valve, Bridgeport Brass, Underwood Typewriter, etc. Hanging out at "Royals" soda fountain and deli located one block from Saint Charles on East Main Street.  Murrow's Nut House on the corner of Main and Fairfield Ave. Altieri's bakery on the East side where, on Sunday mornings, you always bought 2 loaves of Italian bread -- one to eat in the car on the way home and the other for the house -- also the cream filled donuts. The "other" Bus Line was the "Barnum & State". SUBWAY got its start on the corner of Madison and Capital Avenues in the North End in the former Ambrose Pharmacy store by Central High grad Fred DeLuca. Does anyone remember the name brand of the poppy seed and nut bread they sold in the '60's? The three Bridgeport electronics stores, with bins containing individual components and surplus military gear, prior to the invasion of "Radio Shack", "Olsen's", and "Lafayette Electronics" franchise stores; "Western Connecticut Electronics" (WestConn) on the north side of State Street near Iranistan Avenue, "Kaufman Electronics" at 73 Frank Street (now a Pentacostal Church), and "Hatry Electronics" originally at 2473 Main Street below Capitol Avenue, then moved to 1143 Honeyspot Road, Stratford and then to West Haven; Taking the Pleasure Beach Ferry (the "Brinckerhoff":  View the Ferry  ) from Stratford Avenue out of the harbor and over to Pleasure Beach Pier and then riding on the little train from the beach up to the amusement area; The best ice cream cone around came through the window (after you walked up the wooden ramp) at Beechmont Dairy around the corner from Mountain Grove Cemetery;  The ragman came in his truck and paid you for old rags; The cotton candy truck - you could hear the "hummmm" of the truck; The fruit and veggie man driving from building to building, house to house - it might have been Sol Diamond, shown in this 1952 photo: View ; Fishing in the Yellow Mill River (yikes!); Bottled milk - with cream on the top; Penny candy was a penny; Father Panik Village's Sand Cellars; Being home by the time the street lights came on; Family Picnics;   Sled riding at Bullard Havens; The Organ Grinder and his Monkey who traveled Stratford Ave - Anyone remember his name?; The ever changing animations in the window of Fairchild Jewelers at the entrance to the Arcade; The Shoe Mart on East Main St. near Stratford Ave - the place where in the 50's, 60's, and '70's over a thousand high school boys (and grammar schools kids too, if their parents let them) would buy their "Boss" ditty-bopper French kicks all the time, especially for going back to school ($6 bucks a pair! What a deal!); Cutruffello's Creamery on Barnum Avenue; Hartel's gas station at the intersection of Boston and Barnum Avenues; The brick house behind Hartel's (before Imperial Paint took over the property); The empty lots on Barnum and Thompson and Barnum and Light Streets; The old foundry at the city line on Barnum Avenue; The garage and repair shops for the Barnum & State buses at the city line; The brook that used to run where they put the Hi-way Theater on Boston Avenue; The Barnum Theater; Ralph's Auto Repair on Barnum and Grant; The sound of ammunition being tested at Remington Arms; When Main Street, in Stratford, from Barnum Avenue to Paradise Green, had no commercial establishments; Trisco's and Masco's stores on Barnum Avenue; Liscinsky's Market and Sansone's Shoe Repair on Boston Avenue; How you could tell a Slovak, a Pole, or Ukrainian by the church they went to (Holy Name of Jesus, Saint Michael's, or Saints Cyril and Methodius); Piccirillo's Bread;  Scinto's Drug Store on Hallett Street; The Loew's Poli and Majestic Theaters for the first run movie's and also the Lyric heater where croaked out it's last few sounds. It was next to the insects infested Strand Theater (The Bug House); The first Barnum Festival; The proud members of the Yellow Mill Village Women's Auxillary Marching Band - wearing the proud Blue and White uniforms;  And the YMV Women's Auxillary's carnival next to Yellow Mill Pond to raise money to send ALL the kids in YMV to Pleasure Beach Amusement Park for a free day; The Mayfair Theater on East Main Street, or The America just up the street past Skydel's, or down the street to The Astor where we would go on Dish Night, to collect weekly, each one of the 52 piece free dishes that came the price of your ticket; Summerfield Grammar School Class of 1961's teachers for 1st through 8th grades: 1st - Ms Lampell; 2nd - Ms Bender (She told us there was no Santa Claus, we didn't believe her. Se was new. I believe long time teacher Ms Lavery was supposed to start that year but she took ill); 3rd - Ms Wasco; 4th - Ms Noonan;  5th Mr Massanotti; 6th - Ms Callan; 7th and 8th - Mr Oldham, the "other" 7th and 8th (the Edison School kids) - Ms Donovan; Principal - Ann B Oliver. Anyone remember Macauda`s Market, on the corner of Pembroke and Steuben St. It left that location in 1965 and relocated to the corner of East Main St. and Berkshire Ave, just across from Golden`s Drug Store and Paul`s Pizza; C&C Pizzeria, the name "C&C" came from the street corner it was on: Connecticut and Carroll Avenues; (History of C&C: Carl Salerno's father opened Salerno's Apizza on Park Ave in 1947. The Costa family was their landlord. The Costas started a pizzeria on Connecticut Avenue. In 1954 Carl's father wanted to expand, so he took over and ran the C&C Pizzeria from 1954 until 1970. In 1970 he moved it to its present location in Stratford and renamed it Salerno's Apizza again.); The Frisbie Pie Company on Kossuth Street; E.K.'s Music Store and Frank Wojnarowski's Music Store, both of which were on East Main Street.  How about Gemma's Supermarket on East Main Street across from the Russian church;  The Wagon Wheel restaurant on Barnum Avenue;  Mainiero's Bar on Pembroke Street, next to St. John Nep. School; Johnny's Newsstand (later named Al and Jane's Newsstand in 1957) on Stratford Ave across from Waterman Street (it was hardly more than a green painted shack) ; Buying penny candy from Mickie Pollier's on Jane Street ; The Congress Candy Shop; hanging out at Briarwood Farms before it was a hangout; Cruising Main Street on a warm summer night (making a "mission"); Dick's Magic Kitchen; Hopping the fence at Hedges Stadium for the Friday night football games ("Friday Night Lights"); Saffo's; The "Moaner's Bench" for the miscreants in front of Harding Principal Frank McKee's office; Wilmont T. Fiske; The afternoon session for the freshmen and the morning session for all others; Harding Football Coaches Steve Miska, Dan Donofrio, and Ed Tamishunas; Rose Beck; The Harding -Central Thanksgiving games;  Mayor Jasper McLevy who steadfastly refused to plow the streets in winter ("The good Lord put it there, the good Lord will take it away") View Mayor McLevy; Monday through Friday afternoons spent watching American Bandstand on the television. The show debuted nationally on ABC in 1957 from Philadelphia and aired every afternoon until 1963. After 1963 the show moved to Hollywood, CA, and aired only on Saturdays until canceled in 1987;  Listening to Tiny Markel on WNAB;  The "coke" pile (burnt down coal) located between Central Ave and Webster St; The "minnows" pond (you used these for fishing bait) at the end of Webster Street; Harding High's Double Sessions, which started in 1930 due to overcrowding - only 5 years after opening!  The morning session attended from 7:30AM until 12:30PM. The afternoon session started at 12:45PM and was dismissed at 5:30PM. These morning and afternoon sessions continued until 1965; In the early sixties, was there a "Brooks Farms" across the street from Maraczi's, and maybe in-ground trampolines on the side of the food place? Cooper's Auto Parts on East Main St.; Munimaker Cigars downtown across from the Restaurant Supply store near the fire house across from the old railroad station; The auto wash behind Maraczi's was "The Time Saver Auto Wash" and Abe Newman was the manager of the wash and also manager of the bowling alleys. His brother Dave was the actual owner of the auto wash; Another give away was the Barnum Theatre where you could collect a dish during the week while we were at war. Mr. and Mrs. Unger were the owners; Mrs. Unger sold tickets, and Mr. Unger ran the projectors; Sal Micalizzi from Success Park was the originator of Micalizzi's lemon ice, and had a stand on Success Ave at the Bpt/Stfd town line. They moved across the street to the Stratford side when Steve Kochiss had a falling out with SaL, and the old Micalizzi's became the Kitten Club which was run by Mrs. Fry. Her son Paul has the piano and organ stores in Fairfield and Westport; The serials that the Colonial Theatre showed, and there was always a cliff-hangar at the end of each episode; Everybody went to sportsmen's Den On Boston Ave Green before it moved to the hill; Mitchell's milk and ice cream; Skating at Beeches; Twin features, cartoons, newsreels, and coming attractions at the Highway and Beverly Theatres; Another good hill to sleigh ride down was the Tudor Street hill at the GE Gate; The Wonder Bar was a great place for parties on Boston Avenue; The Barnum and State bus line was owned by Mr. Sinanian, and if you were on the opposite side of the street, he would turn the bus around to get your business. The main mechanic at the city line garage was Ralph Mingalello, who opened his own garage at the foot of Grand Street across from Frankie's Dinner, and then opened the school bus lease to the city. Ralph passed way July 7, 2005, at St. Vincent Medical Center; How about Honest John's Pawn Shop on Barnum Avenue which was owned and operated by Phil Smackey; Dugan's Bakery was behind Maraczi's, and Borck and Stevens Bakery on Barnum Avenue, now Borck's Country Home Bakery; Abe Newman was the manager of the "The Time Saver Auto Wash" behind Maraczi's and also manager of the bowling alleys. His brother Dave was the actual owner of the auto wash; How about the Italian pastry shop on Pembroke St across from Edo's?  The owner was my (Marianne D'Allura Rinaldi's) very tall, very kind Grandpa, who made the best canoli and lemon ice, not to mention the most memorable wedding cakes. As an infant I slept in a cookie box as my mother worked in the store with her parents;  The screeching chickens from Joel Levines chicken market also on the Eastside;  Yetta, the wonderful woman who worked as the head bookkeeper;  What about the Eastside gang, THE HORSEMEN; ?  I accidentally caught the tail end of one of their gang fights when I was 10 down on Cedar St. Still, they were pacifists by today's standards!   Sharp dressers, too, black cashmere coats and some of them wore berets as I recall. How about the social club on East Main Street where the "boys" hung out, and the owner's dog, a boxer named Yogi who always hung out right there asleep under a wire chair - the club's name was the Amiga Club...I think;  That was at time when everyone had work. In fact the buses ran all night in order to serve the many factories that were so busy they had 3 shifts.  A bum named "Whammy" who wandered the East End and who would sing the Al Jolson song using the word 'whammy' instead of 'mammy' and would tell you that Al Capone killed his sister. He usually had a dog with him, and when he did, you didn't go near "Whammy";  When you got a new bike and it was from Watson's on East Main Street you knew you had made it to the big time!; Remember going downtown the day after Thanksgiving to watch the Christmas lights being lit!  And those hot & salty nuts & real popped popcorn  from "Morrow's Nut House" on the corner of Main Street and Fairfield Avenue; I don't know if you remember Valley Farms hot dog stand on Boston Ave. I used to live right behind there. I went down there about 4 or 5 weeks ago to get a hot dog and it had been burnt down. Boy, all those memories gone. I was talking to the owner, whom I grew up with, and it will be rebuilt, but to me will never be the same. Had a lot of good times there and lot of good hot dogs; The Bridgeport Harbor tugboat, the "Mary P. McKenna", operating in the Pequonnock River in 1953: View; The Carpenter Steel mill was originally Stanley Works; Peck's Lot on Stratford Ave - it had a grand old home that was demolished for the Thruway; PAL shoeshine boxes; Madris shirts that "bled" and khaki's; Hickey and Star cabs;  "Murray the K" on the Swinging Swaree with a blast from the past; 1010 WINS NY, Cousin Brucey on 77 WABC; Del Prete's Italian Rum Cakes; Charles "Buddy" Breene (now deceased) was the "special cop" that patroled Pleasure Beach and also had a post on ground floor of Read's Dept. store right in front of the elevator. Milk deliveries from Brock Hall dairy; "One-Armed Johnny" - a guy you stayed away from, if you could; The Ferry between Bridgeport and Rye Beach, NY, was named the "Richard Peck" and was converted into a troop ship during WWII; Donald "Duck" Vernuccio from the East Side- he's still around, usually at the Pequonnock Yacht Club; Fazzio's Bakery, Doc Edo's Candy Store; The fish n' chips place on East Main Street (name??) where they wrapped your fish n' chips in newspaper; The ice-cream bus with a torpedo on the front that used to go around town selling ice-cream and whatever - I think it was called "The Torpedo"; The stamp collecting place upstairs at the Arcade on Main Street; Reads and Howlands was always a Santa Claus visit, along with riding down East Main Street and Main Street to see the Christmas lights; The  "American Theatre" at the corner of East Main St. and Putnam St. I believe it was just a block away from Voccola's Bike Store. The cost of admission in the 50's was a nickel.  St. Michael's Grammar School on the first block of Pulaski Street, between East Main Street and Kossuth Street. Across Kossuth Street was the Frisbie Pie Company and Bullard Havens Technical School. Directly across East Main from Pulaski Street was Krentzman's Variety Store, where we bought Spaldeens, baseball cards, jet airplane cards, water pistols, pea shooters, and even the occasional note book. The second block of Pulaski Street, between Kossuth Street and the railroad tracks and across from Bullard Havens, was the location for a while of a raunchy block where things went on that we did not understand until we were quite a bit older; "Sylvo's" Barber Shop in Success Park; The East Side Florist where my dad always got my big yellow chrysanthemum corsage with the blue ribbon and gold "H" which I wore when I escorted him to the Thanksgiving Day Harding-Central games; John the Butcher and the Olympia Chicken Market on East Main Street; Also on Pembroke Street was "Joseph Curiale and Sons" Tailor Shop that was there for at least 50 years. On a Saturday afternoon all the chairs in the shop were filled with all the locals stopping in to chat; Lookin' so "Boss" in your brand new Shark Skin "Continental" suit, from Jerry’s Apparel I believe, along with your Flag Brothers Cuban heel matador shoe/boot. From an anonymous member: "Billy Joel had it right when he said "Ditty Bop" - I was a Ditty Bopper in those days. I did the Shimmy and the Mashed Potatoes and we did Splits (that hurts to think about). The Cool Jerk was BOSS, and the walk, it had to have that "Avenue Strut" with the backs of your hand facing forward, the wrist a little cocked tight to the thighs, the fingers pointing to the back and no arm sway, but the shoulders would lead the way your hands normally do. The head did its' own little slide & snap with each step. It was all an attitude. Too cool!" The Frisbie pie store on Kossuth St. where my friends and I would buy pies with the broken top crust; Krentzman's store on East Main St. where you could get the best candies and shakes and malteds, etc; Olson's variety on East Main where I would purchase packs of baseball cards for my collection; the Homestead Bar and Restaurant where I would stare in the window at my Uncle Ted until he would have me come in for chips and soda; walking to St. Cyrils during all kinds of weather and waiting for the hot and humid days of summer to play stick ball in the huge backyard with the neighborhood kids; The aromas of the local bakeries, the French Baking company, Richesolphs, and the Italian Bakery around the corner. What Smells!!! All in all, it was great growing up in such a diverse neighborhood.  Do you remember the B&T Diner on Stratford Ave?  We lived right around the corner from it just before I95 was build and took the diner.  They had the very best food and Naomi Britlin (?) who co-owned it with her husband Eddie was always so nice to us children.  Had the best homemade donuts and crullers, fish and chips, pie, you name it!  Wish someone had photos or memories of that diner to share about it .  It was a favorite spot for many and it was always crowded.  Coffee was 10 cents! Ms. Dorothy Kaplan, a favorite teacher at Lincoln School. How about the guys who cut our hair and gave us those fabulous "Flat Tops" back-in-the-day, like Joe Kanski, one of the barbers at the Lincoln Barber Shop on Stratford Ave across from Lincoln School. Steve's Market, on White Street. The horse stables at Glenwood Avenue.  When my parents would go shopping at the A & P on Boston Avenue, we children tagged along during the summer months.  Our favorite thing to do after shopping was to go to Uncle Miltie's, a "greasy spoon" located on the street next to the A & P.  As Dad was checking the groceries out and paying the bill, Mom would take us to Uncle Miltie's.  We each had about 50 cents allowance which was big money to a kid in the mid to late 1950's.  We would each order two hamburgers which cost 24 cents for the two.  We would get french fries and I would always get a Royal Crown Cola.  The whole meal was less than 50 cents.  The burgers were greasy, but very tasty to the young palate.  Many times, I would hand Uncle Miltie or his wife my 50 cents and the change I received back was always more than that.  Being brought up in the right way, I always told them that they gave me too much money back.  To this day, I don't know if it was a test to see how honest I was or if they just couldn't count correctly.  I tend to think it was the former!  Also, I remember seeing a man eating scrambled eggs at Uncle Miltie's and he had ketchup on them.  I said "Ew! How can you eat your eggs with ketchup on them?"  He said in reply "Have you ever tried it?"  I said "no" and he said "Then don't criticize it until you've tried it!"  Well, the next time I had scrambled eggs, I tried it and to this day, I prefer my scramble eggs to have ketchup on them!  We got the milk delivered by Sealtest in their boxy milk truck; We played football on the small piece of grass at the Borden’s Dairy on Seaview Ave. Another great place for football when Newfield Park was too crowded was the in front of the sewage treatment plant on Seaview Ave. This was a couple of doors down from Dana Stanziale’s house. Was it the #13 Bus to Pleasure Beach that took us downtown? We would hop that and do our shopping at the A & P on Fairfield Ave. I took Guitar lessons from Guy Smith right upstairs from the market. I know it was the #9 that took us from East Main to Harding, I used to catch it at Berkshire once I moved away from Seaview Ave, but only in the winter. If the weather was tolerable, meaning above 30, I would walk Noble Avenue to Arctic Street then up to Ernie’s Confectionary before the final hill. Does anyone remember what I think was called the "Date Line", a phone number ED4-1000? Do you recall what you heard when you called that number? (Answer: When you dialed the dateline number, you got a "busy signal" and in between the busy signal beeps, you could hear people talking, mainly asking "whats your number?" and if you got a number or gave yours out, one could usually dial it and talk with the person giving it out or you could count on getting called. The poor mans chat room of the era.) Do you remember these places from the East End portion of Stratford Avenue: Gene's Market, Jacobian Cleaners, Shine's Five and Dime, Amy's Fish Market, and the Hippadrome Theater? - What a great time we had on that stretch of the Avenue. We would buy candy at Leroy's Smoke Shop then cross the Avenue and take in the Saturday afternoon matinee. Does anyone remember Sunbeam Bread days at Pleasure Beach, where on Tuesdays you rode for free if you had a sticker from the end of a loaf of Sunbeam Bread?;  Remember Mickey's Market on Jane Street and buying penny candy during recess. Also Briarwoods.... Question: What did the sign over the take-out window say? Answer: Be quiet, Behave, or Be-gone.  I was shocked when I recently drove down Main Street during a visit to Bridgeport. It's all gone! It is just astounding how that happens. To have all those vivid memories of the crowded streets, HL Greene's, Leavitts, Read's, Kresge, the theaters - Poli and Majestic - all gone!  My family moved into what was then Yellow Mill Village in 1940, as one of the first tenants.  YMV was pristine, with lawns, benches, trellises,  2 playgrounds with "showers for summer", swings, see-saws, and there were enough to accommodate great games of "pink ball baseball." Our own drug store (Scinto's), Grocery (Jarusinski's), a notions store (Mellitz) and a bakery. Pembroke street was the neighborhood and you could get your clothes "sponge and pressed" at our cleaners.  Kott's was THEE delicatessen, and we support ed three bakeries on Pembroke Street (3 Italian, & 1 Jewish), and 2 other drug stores besides Scinto's (Riccio's, and one other) plus 2 Italian markets, one was Lisi's, and we even had a fresh chicken market which provided live chickens that you selected and they prepared them for you before your very eyes.  So, I ask if anyone has any photo's of that era (1940 - 1952) from family albums, it would be so incredibly great if they would submit them for posting on this website; The Stone Bridge out to the island in Beardsley Park: View; The cotton candy truck - you could hear the "hummmm" of the truck; The fruit and veggie man driving street to street, house to house, and building to building; Fishing in the Yellow Mill River (yikes!); Bottled milk - with cream on the top; Penny candy was a penny; Father Panik Village's Sand Cellars; Being home by the time the street lights came on; Family Picnics; Sled riding at Bullard Havens; The Organ Grinder and his Monkey who traveled Stratford Ave - Anyone remember his name? Remember calling Success Village  "Sussex Park", Remember the "vegetable man" with his pickup truck that had the scale hanging on the back; Remember the "rag man" with his horse drawn buggy collecting rags; Remember the insurance man coming to your apartment every week to collect the 65 cent premium for your dad's life insurance; Remember the Mechanics and Farmers Savings Bank envelopes that you brought to school with a quarter in it every few weeks; Remember Valley Farms "ahbeets" slices for a quarter; Remember  the parking lot at the end of Court A in Success Park was "the woods", not a parking lot; Betty Ann's on Success Ave, Vincent's Market with the boxing ring in the back, also on Success Ave; Remember when the Barnum theater was 25 cents and the Highway show was 35 cents - you flattened out your popcorn box and "scaled" it at the movie screen.   The Remington self-propelled car that took explosives and personnel from the plant (near the shot tower) up to the Remington Woods on Success Hill -- the tracks ran under Boston Ave. and along side the GE plant next to the spray ponds: View ; Frank's Ahbeets on Pembroke Street next to Fazio's Bakery & Lisi's Importing.  "Larry's Variety" on the corner of Pembroke and Jane (also known as Lafoye's Variety - it was owned by the father of member Dan Luparello from about 1940 to 1953) the store was kitty corner from Saint John Nepomucene School and was a popular kid's hangout for that part of the East-End. How great was Newfield Park in the East End -- a haven for all who lived around it -- except when the Park was enveloped in the pink cloud of whatever was released when the Stanley Works knocked down their furnaces, or smelting towers, or whatever.  Whatever the crud was, it left a catch in the throat and was probably toxic as all hell. From the "Did you know this?" files.... back in the early 1970's Harding High's Principal was named Richard Mayer (he later went on to Harding's arch-rival, Central High) --  his son is recording artist/musician rock star John Mayer (View their photo); How did you order that pizza?... Everyone say "ahbeets with scamotes" --  here's a link to a Roadfood website blog discussion about just what is "scamotes"  along with lots of references to Bridgeport area pizza places from our era: Click on: Roadfood.com;  St. John Nepomucene Class of 1956's teachers (from 1949-1956): First Grade: Sr. Mary Armelda; Second Grade: Sr. Mary Grace; Third Grade: Sr. Mary Rosemarie; Fourth Grade: Sr. Mary Borgia; Fifth Grade: Sr. Mary Esperance; Sixth Grade: Sr. Mary Felica; Seventh Grade: Sr. Mary Lawrence; Eighth Grade: Sr. Mary Emmerich. Remember going to tell Santa Claus what you wanted? Santa was in the basement of Howland's Department Store.  I can vaguely remember the line wrapped around waiting for our term on his lap.  One other memory is going to St. Augustine's Church before it was a cathedral. But there were so many people attending Christmas Mass that they had to put a loud speaker outside because people stood outside to attend Mass!  Purchasing Marvel Comics for a dime at Charlie Pressmen's Drug Store on the corner of Barnum and Central Avenues. Going to the American Theater and the Mayfair Theater on East Main St, or the Barnum Theatre on Barnum Ave. The Barnum & State and CR&L buses struggling in the snow and ice while going up the Barnum Ave hill between Seaview and Central Avenues. Running home after school to watch Zorro at 3:30pm. The 20 cartoon matinees at the Barnum Theater. Remember when Pleasure Beach was a pleasure and we'd ride the CR&L bus for three tokens for a quarter to get there. Wednesdays was 10cents a ride day. Uncle Milties on Boston Ave, and not to forget the Greeks hot dogs. Remember all the late forties and early fifties Fords and Mercs lowered, chopped, the flat head V-8s supped up with steel packs blasting away. What ever happened to Herbie Sutton, Stacy Kormetis, Dennis Vestunis, who together with Buttons Parker, Vinny Lombardo, and others whooped Central that Thanksgiving Day a million years ago. Girl Scout Camp Trefoil located in Stepney. The US Navy ships that visited Bridgeport Harbor and tied up at the Buckley Brothers fuel dock for 4th of July walk-aboard tours. Edison School mid-1950's staff: Principals Ms Bessie Jacobs and Ms Ester Sherman, Teachers Mrs. Hanley, Mrs Griffin, Ms Carley, Mrs Galla (you know you "arrived" when you got to her classes with her famous "side crayon" art techniques; and, being a "Patrol Boy" there. Hall School late 1950s staff: Principal Florence Nelson, Teachers Mrs Reeves, Mr James Kirby (science), Mrs Pulaski (social studies), Ms Viola Audley (Math).

"Loew's Poli and Majestic Theaters: Do you have any fond memories of these Main Street theaters?"

Here is a link to lots of current interior photos of the two theatres, which are now, unfortunately, in a sad state of disrepair and neglect. Still, you will be able to see some of the former beauty and majesty of these two Bridgeport landmarks which made them the "go-to place" for first dates you wished to impress (the Candlelight and Pix drive-in theaters were for following dates, of course.)  Click on: Loew's Poli and Majestic Theaters

"A Brief history of the East End section of Bridgeport"

Some HISTORY of the some areas of the East End of Bridgeport....

The East End: The portion of the city east of Old Mill Creek and Yellow Mill Pond that was part of the Town of Stratford until 1889 (it was the Borough of West Stratford from 1886-89).  It was comprised of three villages -- (1) Lake Village (aka Gretna Green) along Seaview Avenue from Barnum Avenue to Ogden St. Ext.; (2) Deacon's Point, the Seaview Avenue area of  Williston Street, Holly Street, and Deacon Street; and, (3) Newfield Grove, comprised of the 'Presidential' streets (Jefferson, Adams, along with DeKalb) to the south of Newfield Park. 

The area known as Newfield:  The 'new field' was a tract of farming land officially laid out by the town fathers of Stratford in 1717.  The present Stratford and Newfield Avenues were laid out for access, and it was divided into three-to-five acre parcels (every upstanding white male citizen of the town owned and frequently traded several of these).  Newfield Harbor (18th-century name of Bridgeport Harbor) took its name from this undertaking.  The area currently known as 'Newfield' was laid out by New York developers in 1869.

"Remember when Bridgeport was a city of factories and factory workers?"

Bridgeport was once a bustling industrial city, and there are few from our "era" who didn't have a parent or relative working in one of the many Bridgeport factories. Give yourself a treat and view this "YouTube" video made by former "CHEERS" star and Bridgeport native John Ratzenberger (he was "Cliff the Mailman") as a salute to his home town of Bridgeport and to its manufacturing heritage. Click on: Video

"Bridgeport Sightings in the Movies"

  • (From Don Browne) In the 1972 movie, "The Effect of Gamma Rays On Man-In-The-Moon Marigolds", directed by Paul Newman, which was filmed entirely in Bridgeport; (1) the "high school scenes" were shot inside and outside Warren Harding. Inside scenes in the "Art's classroom" on the second floor facing Hedges Stadium, and in hallways which had lockers. Outside scenes in a parked car at the corner of Central Avenue and Ogden Street Extention, where the "mother" (Joanne Woodward) was waiting for her two daughters, the "popular" child (Roberta Wallach) and the "gifted" child (Nell Potts) to get out of high school. Harding was on "single sessions" at this time. Students flood out of new entrances facing Central Avenue where the old "boy's gym" entrance had stood. Then the car travels down various "disconnected", but photogenic, streets until; (2) the "grocery store scenes". The grocery store was "Milano's Superette", located on the east side at 604 East Main, at the "T" intersection of Burroughs Street. The film camera faces south as the car stops directly in front of "Milano's". The film camera covers the western side of East Main, between Burroughs Street and Seymour Street. The historic "Freedman Brothers Furniture Store" is visible to its conclusion at Seymour Street. Judging from the lack of traffic and parked cars in front of Freedman's, this scene was filmed on a Sunday. I knew this neighborhood well as I lived at 65 Seymour Street until I was 16 years old. Then the car and its occupants travel to; (3) their home, which is inexplicably located in Bassick High School's jurisdiction. The "house scenes" are filmed in a single story home with a large backyard, on Russell Street, across from the harbor. Strangely, this was the street where my Seymour Street friends, four brothers, the Shumosky family, had moved from 90 Seymour Street in 1961. The "high school scenes" were filmed in September 1971. The film was pre-released to test audiences on December 27, 1971. The film was not commercially successful, although nominated for several Golden Globe Awards. (Note: We recently received an email from Mike Freddino, the owner of the "Buy-Rite Market" which was located at 604-612 East Main St from December 1967 until June 1995. He indicated the grocery scene mentioned above was shot at his Buy-Rite Market and he appeared as the cashier in the market scene, which was shot on a Monday. Mr. Freddino's email address is mfredd27@hotmail.com)
  • In  the 1970 movie, "Patton", "Bridgeport, CT" is clearly hand painted  on one of the tanks.
  • In the 2002 movie "Van Wilder" actor Tim Matheson, who plays the title character's father, receives a package from the school addressed to him on Jewett Avenue, Bridgeport, CT.
  •  A 1947 Robert Mitchum movie, "Out of the Past", was set in Bridgeport, California. We all know what Bridgeport ,Connecticut meant to Mitchum, so it's one of those things that makes you think - did he or didn't he help choose the name of the Californian town for the movie? (Note, there is an actual Bridgeport, CA, east of San Francisco near the Nevada border.)
  • The 1937 film "There Goes My Girl," a screwball comedy in which Jerry (Gene Raymond) and Connie (Ann Southern) are ace reporters for rival newspapers. They are engaged to be married, but their employers try every trick in the book to keep them apart. With the nuptials apparently thwarted, Jerry and Connie are sent by their respective newspapers to cover the Andrews murder case in Bridgeport. Will the couple reconcile or will professional competition drive them farther apart?

"Bridgeport Area Dictionary"

A collection of definitions for some unique pronunciations used in the Bridgeport area: What did he just say? 

Old Street Maps of Bridgeport (Pre-Thruway) sent in by member Donald Browne.
Note: to expand the maps to regular size for viewing, click on the lower right hand portion of the map:

  • The Lower East End: View

  • The Upper East End: View

  • The Lower East Side: View

  • The Upper East Side: View

Links to more old (1951 era) Maps of Bridgeport
Note: to expand the maps to regular size for viewing, click on the lower right hand portion of the map

"Grammar School Playground Games"

A collection of memories of favorite games played on the playgrounds of East End and East Side Grammar Schools. To read them, click on: Read 

"More memories from back when we were 'kids' "

A collection of favorite old Cowboy Western stars from both the movies and TV: View

"East Side, West Side, All around the town.,,,,"

A collection of thoughts from our members concerning the various boundaries of the East End, East Side, and others areas of Bridgeport. To read them, click on: View

Louis Trapasso's Gallery of Paintings of various Bridgeport Landmarks

Artist/Painter Louis Trapasso, an old -time East-Ender, is currently working on a series of paintings depicting downtown Bridgeport as it was in the 40's through the 50's. 

Here are seven of Louis' works on this project, which I'm sure you will enjoy. Included among them are (1) The Congress Candy Store and The Loew's Poli at Main and Congress Streets, (2) Dolan's Corner and the Waldorf Cafeteria at Golden Hill and Middle Streets, (3) The Globe Theatre on Main Street, (4) The White Tower Restaurant at Main and Congress Streets, (5) The corner of Main Street and Fairfield Avenue, (6) Thursday Night Downtown at the corner of Main and Fairfield, (7) Lane's Diner on Broad Street next to the old UI building. To view them, click on: View

Louis, who lived on Smith Street directly behind Newfield School, attended Newfield and Lincoln schools, and Blessed Sacrament Church. He would like to expand this series of paintings to cover some of the old neighborhoods in other parts of the city - like the East End and the East Side. Ultimately, he wants to produce a group of paintings that the city would retain as a visual addition to the historical record of Bridgeport's past, and which would always be available for public viewing.  Unfortunately, Louis says his memory is not sharp enough to produce an accurate representation without the help of photographic reference material (I think we all can empathize with that!)  So, if you could recommend anyone who might be a possible source for this type of material, please contact Louis at his e-mail address: lwtrap@snet.net    

Louis' other works of art can be viewed and purchased at: www.picturepainter.com

Essays on the East End and East Side by various contributors

Memories of Bridgeport during the 1950's, by Bill Nolan (of WPKN 89.5 FM Radio): Read  

An essay, "The Joys of Growing Up Italian": Read  

Memories from Bridgeport resident Lillian "Aunt Lil" Bayerle, born in 1924: Read  

Some Memories provided by Don Browne, Harding Class of 1962:  
    (1) Pleasure Beach: Read  
    (2) Bridgeport: Read  
    (3) CBS-TV's 1958 "20th Century" Series Special on Harding High School: Read 
    (4) Don Browne reports on a 2002 tour of the East Side: Read
    (5) Harding High's "Double Sessions": Read  
    (6) Revisiting the "Harding Years": Read  
    (7) Snapshot Memories of Bridgeport's East Side: Read 
    (8) Memories of Franklin School 1950-1958: Read 
    (9) A Tribute to The Fairway Market located on Fairfield Ave: Read 
    (10) Bridgeport Bus Routes from the 1950's and 1960's: Read 

Some Memories provided by John Babina, Edison (55), Hall (56), Notre Dame (61):  
    (1) Christmas in Bridgeport: Read  
    (2) The 1st TV set in Success Park: Read  
    (3) More wonderful memories: Read  
    (4) Memories from Edison School, 1948-1955: Read    
    (5) More Memories: Read  
    (6) And some more Memories: Read   
    (7) Everyday life in Success Park Apartments; a Kitchen Scene, Circa: 1954 (with photo): Read  
    (8) Childhood Memories: "Picking it up off the ground": Read
    (9) Our candies and treats in the late 1940s and 1950s: Read

A  "Pleasure Beach" Timeline, submitted by Mike Sembos : Read  

A "location-packed" listing of "Places to go in Bridgeport" by Ronald Rondyke:  Read  

Some Recent Observations of Pleasure Beach provided by Jack Hardy (Newfield '58,Lincoln '61,Harding '65): Read  

A wonderful Fairfield County Weekly article chronicling the history of Father Panik Village (originally Yellow Mill Village): Read.

An article from the June 16, 2005, issue of THE BRIDGEPORT NEWS, written by Mary K. Witkowski, about "Charlie the Bum", a Homeless man who wandered the East End and East Side of Bridgeport until his death in 1965. Mary K. Witkowski is Bridgeport's city historian and the head of Historical Collections at the Bridgeport Public Library (note: click on lower right hand corner of the article to expand it to normal size). Click on the following to: read a copy of the newspaper article  

Remember When? A Trip Down Memory Lane: Read.

Surefire ways to tell you're a "Bridgeporter": Read.

Join in the Fight for Pleasure Beach

This beautiful 65-acre treasure on Long Island Sound can be lost as a public waterfront park unless access is built to it by a new bridge or causeway. Presently a host to an increasing number of wildlife, the beach, "off-limits" to the public when Piping Plover and Least Terns birds nest, needs to be saved before it is too late. Write to City, State and Federal leadership now. Only you can decide, - a public park or a wildlife refuge? Why not enjoy both? Have Questions? Write or call Morgan Kaolian, Long Island Sound America for Pleasure Beach, 75 York Street, Stratford, CT 06615. Phone (203) 375-3686. Get involved!  

Connecticut Post May 13, 2004, Newspaper article about Pleasure Beach, click on: Read

A February 2008 Connecticut Post article about plans to sell Pleasure Beach, click on: Post Article

For all you Bridgeport Drum and Bugle Corp Members

Here a couple of web sites you'll want to visit. They were sent to us by AmyMarie Vizzo-Paniccia, a current Bridgeport Councilwoman representing the 134th District, and a former East-Sider. You can contact AmyMarie at phone 610-7620:

  • Alumni Corps for all Bridgeport Junior Drum and Bugle Corps members (1950s-1970s): Park City Pride 

  • "The Black and Gold continues.." The PAL Buccaneers: PAL Buccaneers 

And a final memory...... the Kingsmen's 1963 Classic Party Song, "Louie Louie"   Here are the original lyrics written by R. Berry in 1955:  Read   

For All You North End, West End, & Black Rock "kids" ..... (contributed by our visitors from these areas of Bridgeport)

How about Junior's at State and Fairfield;  Gaby's Grocery by Bassick; Crown Markets; Maplewood Junior High and Elementary schools; Crystal Palace; King Cole's - View King Cole; Gratt Pharmacy; Royal Candy across from St Vincent's; Riding bikes down the hill from Brooklawn Country Club.); Day camp at the Boys and Girls Club across from the North Avenue jail; Italian Ices on lower Main Street near Seaside Park; There was ONLY one MacDonald's - on north Main Street; FROM THE 40'S, 50'S ALL ON STATE ST: BANVILLE'S FROZEN CUSTARD; THE FLYING SAUCER REST AND BOB SAVAGE (LONG DECEASED); MACK'S DINER, SID'S SMOKE SHOP; BELOIN'S NEWSROOM; THE WEST END ALLEYS (SETTING UP PINS THERE); ZWERDLING'S BAKERY ON COLORADO & STATE AND ACROSS TASTY BAKERY; THE WEST END THEATER & MR. SWARTZ; BASSICK BICYCLE SHOP; GEORGE'S SHOE REPAIR; BASSICK SODA SHOP; GOLD'S DELI ON CLINTON & STATE - KOSHER PICKLES EXTRA LARGE FOR A NICKEL; THE LIBERTY THEATER;  SHERMAN GREENWALD'S MEN'S STORE; DEMAS'S LUNCHEONETTE; ZELICK'S LIVE POULTRY; GREENGARDEN'S DELI; LOMBARD'S HABERDASHERY; HUNK TOWN AND THE HUNGARIAN BAKERY'S FRESH BAKED BREADS AND ROLLS - YOU COULD SMELL THEM FROM 2 BLOCKS RADIUS; THE SPANISH AMERICAN SOCIAL CLUB ON HANCOCK & STATE - NEXT DOOR TO RADIO PRINTING; THE HUNGARIAN RESTAURANT THEN MIKE'S VARIETY ACROSS FROM THE BEAD CHAIN CO.;  Corbit's Studio, downtown; Napoli's Pizza on Park Avenue; Angelo's Pear Tree Shop on Grand Street in the Hollow and homemade Italian Ice in the summer and Columbia bicycles in his side store; Jimi Hendrix and Ike & Tina Turner playing at Kennedy Stadium; Bocci ball in the field next to the North End Girls' and Boys' Club; Pete's Sub on the corner of Madison and Capital - the ORIGINAL Subway Sandwich;  Zeisler's Bakery on Fairfield Ave and going in late at night and getting fresh baked rolls; Derry's Department Store on State Street and Clinton Ave; John's Pharmacy and the Big Barrel Root Beer served in ice-frosted glasses; Watching the animals parade down Railroad Avenue when the circus came to town; Burroughs Library on Fairfield Ave and State Street. ON SATURDAY MORNINGS IN THE 50'S THEY WOULD DRIVE ARMY TANKS DOWN HARRAL AVE TO SEASIDE WHERE THE RESERVES WERE AND ALL THE KIDS WOULD BE OUT WATCHING AND WAVING TO THEM. ON WASHINGTON AVE. THE WAS A FACTORY THAT MADE THE RUBBER GASKET THAT GOES ON TOP OF A MASON JAR. WHEN THEY KNOCKED THAT FACTORY DOWN TO MAKE WAY FOR RT25 THERE WERE MILLIONS OF RED RUBBER GASKETS LEFT IN THE RUBBLE EVERY KID IN THE HOLLOW HAD AT LEAST 25 FEET OF THESE THINGS LINKED LIKE A CHAIN AROUND THEIR BIKE OR THEIR BODIES. WHEELERS MANSION NEXT TO THE OLD CENTRAL HIGH WAS OUR PLAY GROUND - FOOTBALL AND BASEBALL. WEDNESDAY NIGHT RING SIDE AT THE KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS ACROSS FROM THE CRESCENT BUILDING WITH THE LIKES OF THE SHEIK, ANTONINO ROCCA, RICKY STARR ,  HAYSTACK CALHOUN AND SKULL MURPHY. IF YOU PLAYED PINBALL IT WAS POP'S ON PEQUONNOCK OR MO'S ON HARRAL AND MILINE ST. OUR "ABEETS" WAS JERRY'S WITH THAT HUGE LIGHT SIGN SHINNING IN MY LIVING ROOM ALL NIGHT EVERY NIGHT. YOU SHOPPED AT FRANKS IDEAL MARKET OR LOUIS FRUITS OR DIONIS OR JOHNS OR YOLLY'S OR MOBILIO'S.  POP'S WAS THE BEST SELECTION FOR CANDY. AND WHEN I WAS FIRST OLD ENOUGH TO GO TO THE STORE, MILK BREAD AND CIGARETTES WERE EACH ONLY 22 CENTS. I ALSO HAD TO TAKE THE 3 GALLON KEROSENE OIL CAN FROM OUR STOVE EVERY OTHER DAY IN THE WINTER TO POP'S OR MO'S TO GET IT FILLED UP FOR 30 CENTS. YOU COULD GO TO MARC'S DRUG STORE OR TO TEDDY'S ACROSS THE STREET FOR YOUR FOUNTAIN FIX OF CHERRY SODA TILL THE EARLY 60'S. YOU HAD TWO BUDS ON PEQUONNOCK ST. BUDS BAR AND GRILL ON HARRAL AND BUDS LUNCH JUST PAST JONES AVE. JUST TO DROP NAMES IN THE AREA: MILLIES ON MILINE ST AND HARRAL AVE, VIC'S FISH AND CHIPS HARRAL AND JAMES, DANNY'S BARBER SHOP HARRAL AVE, SONNY'S POOL PARLOR CALHOUN AVE, THE TRIO BAR ON JONES AND JAMES, PRINCE'S ON PARK AVE, THE OAK VIEW THE BEST ROAST BEEF SANDWICHES EVER, THE ALLEY A LARGE APARTMENT BUILDING ON HARRAL GOING NORTH BEFORE THE GREENS, LUIGI'S PARK AVE, NANNY GOAT PARK, ANGELOS PEAR TREE SHOP, WE PLAYED AT BEECHES WOODS WHERE CENTRAL IS NOW AND THE RED ROOSTER WAS ONCE THE SUGAR SHACK, AND THERE WAS PIC'S PARLOR ON MADISON AVE, AND ROCCO'S PIZZA WAS ON MADISON AVE BEFORE MOVING TO THE EAST SIDE ON PEMBROKE AND ARTIC, AND DANTE'S RESTAURANT ON MADISON AND FEDERAL, WHEN WE WENT DOWNTOWN WE'D WALK OR RIDE THE BIG CIRCLE ON THURSDAY NIGHTS, FROM PHIL'S SUGAR BOWL DOWN TO NEWS CORNER AND BACK, ON SUNDAYS AFTER 10 O'CLOCK MASS AT ST AUGUSTINE'S WE GO FOR BREAKFAST AT THE ESQUIRE DINER ON CONGRESS AND MAIN. THERE IS SO MUCH MORE LETS HEAR FROM SOME HOLLOW KIDS!!! And from Black Rock comes the following:  You watched the 4th of July fireworks from St. Mary's-by-the-Sea; You watched the Black Rock Day Parade, then walked to Ellsworth Field for the festivities; You attended Brownies' meetings at Bartram Hall on Brewster Street; You remember the concrete playgrounds and basement bathrooms of Black Rock School; Your parents didn't mind if you played by Ash Creek; You went to the movies at the Beverly Theater for 99 cents, and it had the biggest screen around; You remember when Pantry Pride burned to the ground; If your school didn't have a shop or home ec classroom, you walked to another school for that class (unescorted). I attended Elias Howe School, old even when I went to it (1939-48), Maplewood JHS for 9th grade, and then off to Bassick.  Growing up during WWII was an exciting time with the factories going 24 hours a day, anti-aircraft batteries on their roofs, guards around their perimeters, and Corsairs flying over town from Chance Vought in Stratford. We would go every Saturday to the Matinee at the West End Theater to see the serial, previews, cartoon, newsreel, and two movies - usually one a western. Bassick had such a small field, that we had to walk over to Went Field near Wordin Avenue for baseball. As I got older I would go with my friend, Billy, downtown to see a movie at the Poli, Majestic or Globe.  We would take the Barnum & State to town and return on the CR&L.  When the weather was nice, Bill and I would walk home, past Zemel's, the beautiful traffic circle at Park and Fairfield Avenues, past the Klein Memorial with the Cadillac dealer across the way, by Bassick HS, past Women's Drug Store on Fairfield and Clinton, and back home. We would play stickball and touch football at the library park where State Street meets Fairfield Avenue. I never had a male teacher in my nine years at Elias Howe (K-8).  They were all up in age and mostly unmarried ladies, but fantastic teachers and greatly respected by me. I worked part time on Saturdays at Miles Shoe store the corner of Fairfield and Main, and eventually had an internship at Bridgeport City Trust on Main Street.  I even worked one summer at Manning, Maxwell & Moore in Stratford, before going off to law school and then the Air Force. I remember my mom loved the beach and we would go to Seaside Park in the summer and change in the beach house and get some Cracker Jacks before going through the tunnel to the beach.  We would travel there on the Gray Line. I remember they had bars on their windows. I also worked in the Howard Johnson's in Milford on the Boston Post Road and in the Old Fashioned Ice Cream Parlor in Westport for Bob Beach.  Waited on several celebrities including Martha Raye and Enzio Pinza from South Pacific.  We wore handlebar moustaches and had a feature article in the NY Sunday Mirror. For several years we had a summer cottage in Woodmont (Milford) and often went to Savin Rock for the amusement park and Jimmy's hot dogs. There were summer pop concerts at both the Yale Bowl and in Fairfield.  Cannot forget the Ritz Ballroom in Black Rock on Fairfield Avenue with all the famous bands playing there.  Kids today do not know what they are missing. I remember after dates on Saturday night, a lot of the fellows would gather at the Fairfield Dinner to shoot-the -breeze. I could go on and on, but I was so thrilled in reading your website, that I wanted to share some of my thoughts with you (Roger Shatanof, Coral Gables, Florida). 5 cent Saturday matinees for the younger set at the Bostwick Theatre in Hunktown, followed by adult movies on Sunday where your admission ticket got your Mom a plate or cup for free. My Mom collected a whole service for 8, and I can still see the hand-painted flower that adorned each piece. The West End Movie Theatre on State Street where many couples shared first hugs & kisses. The Mosque Roller Rink on Sunday Afternoons --- fun for all ages. For you North Enders who haven't been back to Bridgeport in a while, here's a link to the home page of the iconic Merritt Canteen Those hot dogs have gotten a little expensive! Santa coming in by Chopper to the Lafayette "Mall". Emmy's Pizza in the mall. Nick's Grocery in the Rock. The Beverly Theater across the "Ave." Corner stores on Ellsworth St, Canfield Ave, The Coal deposits of Ash Creek, Bullard's Foundry, and how the marshes thrived and we swam in as kids, and none left today, but mud flats. All the Factories that once were in the Rock. The great times at the true "Field" and Black Rock Day's and BRLL.  Greenwald's Mens Store; The Liberty Theater was between Howard Avenue and Colorado Avenue on State Street. The Liberty Theater had 9 cent matinees for kids on Saturdays.  I also remember helping the owner's son exterminate rats in the theater after closing.  The rats would come out to feast on popcorn and candy that was dropped on the floor during the movies.  We dispatched many of them with our air rifles.  It wasn't uncommon for one of those furry rats to run across your feet while you were watching a movie! The Flying Saucer; Banvilles;  Weitenstien's Newsroom; the West End Bowling Alleys;  

And..... For All You South End "kids", too..... (contributed by our visitors from these areas of Bridgeport)

1. You always went to Lafeyette Plaza first ... then if you couldn't find it you'd go to Trumbull. 2. You had your picture taken with Santa at Read's Dept. Store. 3. You played your first "Video Game" (PONG) in the (lower) entrance to Korvette's. 4. You bought all your (vinyl) albums at Karl Graff's. 5. The Curtis mansion was always mysterious. 6. You knew there was a secret entrance to get on top of the Arch on the East side of Seaside Park. 7. You remember when the Seaside dump was a pit. 8. You know where "Mandanici's Mountain" is. 9. You drank all night for $10 at the Kingsmen Pub. Bring your own mug! 10. UB had the best student center with bowling alleys, pinball machines, pool tables, jukebox, & soft porn movies on the third floor on weekends. 11. Jai-Alai wasn't a foreign word to you. 12. You knew what theatre was running Rocky Horror on what night. 13. You knew there were melonheads in Ninety Acres. 14. You knew how to hop the fence at Fayerweather for a free swim. 15. You remember you could crash on the beach at "The Point" & sleep there all night into the morning. 16. You know who the "Returnable People" are. 17. A successful jump over the Rooster River on your bike made you an instant celebrity. 18. When Route 8/25 ended at Lindley street. 19. Your bought your toys at Topps or Barkers. 20. When the FIRST Duchess was at Park & Railroad Avenues. 

    If you have some favorite memories of growing up in Bridgeport which you would like added to this listing, please e-mail them to Jim Sullivan at: eastenders.alumni.assoc@gmail.com