Ruins of Old Eastwick

Posters on this site have left comments about idyllic days spent in pre-redevelopment Eastwick. These are some concrete remains of this anomalously interracial community: a church known recently as the St. Paul AME and a two story single-family home on the opposite sides of now-defunct 86th St. and Bartram Ave. Much of the grid system of pre-1950s Eastwick has been obliterated, the untended roads end abruptly or continue into abandoned lowland fields as rutted paths.

Both are located here:

[St. Paul AME Church — in 1942 known as the Eastwick Church, built in 1928 by S.J. Jones]

[Builder’s stone, St. Paul’s AME]

[8608 Bartram Ave.]

More to come.


96 thoughts on “Ruins of Old Eastwick

  1. I have two items that might interest you both of which were on the “free cart” at the UCB library: (1) Mill Creek Redevelopment Area Plan 1954 and (2) Schuylkill River Park Center City Redevelopment Area 1964. Happy to mail them to you.

  2. I just moved to the area I was born and raised comming to ST Paul Church.Each and evry sunday. My grandmother would be proud to see the church still in function.She fought unto she passed.In fact No one could function at the church when Eunce Pettigrew went to see her maker.I can’t wait to come back home and sit in her seat third ails on the right so just move over we are comming back home.Just like she wanted.Bless all who are there.And i will see you soon Sis Pettigrew’s granddaughter.Sis Nadina

  3. I frequented this area in my travels around Philly in the 60’s. When I came home from the service in 72 there was nothing standing Eastwick Ave looked like Hiroshima. Hail redevelopment the destroyer of neighborhoods!

    1. Yes they ruined al ot of family homes where families would gather on Sunday . I hope they fail in all they do .I lived at 79th and Lyons Av and they gave my parents penny crap for the home they were forced to sell .

  4. bryant moore | August 16, 2007 at 12:03 pm | Reply

    i am a child of the ed bacon version of sw philly. when my great grandfather lived in the meadows,i.e. eastwick section i heard stories of how the blacks and whites got along and how my grandmom and her cousins used to play by the creek and fish and there used to be homes and stores out there and how she caught the 37 into town or to chester,pa. in the late 80′s i went exploring the area behind pepper middle school you can tell by the brush that this area surrounding me couldnt have been removed but some 20 or so years. it was something out the future.the area took me back in time,you could still see the sidewalks and streets it was erry but cool .as i walked more i found myself walking on the old 37 trolley tracks and its right of way the tracks looked as if a trolley would come any second . you could tell that this was viable neighborhood just like what you see on typical rowhome street. i even saw a creek,well it used to be one ,it was buried in debris. as i continued to walk i eventually saw the old homes pre-urban renewal .strange how everyone was wanting suburban like homes with driveways and the like ,that stuff was right there ,you’d think you were in the sticks. the last reality kick was as i walked to end of that block it just ends prematurely. the street stops and shrubs began and there sits a lonely trolley pole standing in the dirt with no tracks in overgrown shrubbery. it is now 2007 and it was twenty or so years since i took that track. i stood on the 84th street bridge to look down on that was sad nature has taken over it you can barely see a trace and futher down the block the homes were still there like proud people putting up a good fight and oh yeah that trolley pole is still standing. thanks ed.
    joe roman | April 19, 2008 at 12:14 am | Reply

    I totally agree w/ bryant. My parents were from there(eastwick). I met a lot of old timers from there both races and they are good people.I played down there as a kid 1970′s.We hung at the old road off of island ave. You can not see it from the bridge but it was there. Boy they were the times.

    Pingback: Ruins of Old Eastwick « THE NECESSITY FOR RUINS
    Catherine Mary Shoup | December 8, 2008 at 8:25 am | Reply

    I am the Granddaughter of Anna Klein. She lived across the street from the Airport Cafe. My mother Cass and Father Richard worked at the Brewester Club and we lived above it until I was 2 years old. We then moved To Colwyn where I grew up. Every Sunday my sister Gloria and I would go to my grandmothers house to play with our cousins and have dinner. A lady by the name of Mrs. Berry lived next door to her. My grandmothers maiden name was Berry and they use to say they were sisters inside out. My grandmother was white and Mrs. Berry was black. I remember everyone getting along, black and white alike. Yes, people were poor but It was a most wonderful environment to be apart of. Now I work at the New Post Office on Lindbergh and pass the area where my grand mother lived. To this day I still miss the wonderful times I had there. To see what has become of the area is extremely sad for me. From what I remember everyone had to move so they could build better homes for people but the only ones who benefited was big business.
    Woodleigh | January 18, 2009 at 7:37 am | Reply

    Both of my parents grew up in what we all called “the meadows”. My dad, born in 1911, lived at 82nd & Dicks Ave. He was the youngest of six children.

    My mother lived on 85th St., between what then was Guyer and Grover Avenues. She was the oldest of eight. Though my dad’s parents” home still stands, my mother’s family was forced to move out due to the reconstruction of the area. I believe 85th was obliterated from the map.

    I’m going back quite a while ago and yes, we were fortunate to have grandparents living there.

    I spent many weekend days (and nights in the meadows during my preschool and grade school years. Compared to the rowhouse my family had, visiting my grandparents was “country” to me. I, my brothers and our many cousins had wonderful times there.

    In my teens, my friends and I would hop the 37 trolley to attend the dances at St. Raphael’s Parish, also in the meadows.

    Thanks for reading a few of the memories I have of good times growing up in southwest philadelphia.
    Woodleigh | January 18, 2009 at 7:48 am | Reply

    Joe Roman, did you attend St. Clement’s School at 71st-72nd and Paschall Avenue in southwest philly?

    Joe Roman | November 18, 2010 at 9:21 pm | Reply

    No I went to St. Marys at 59th and elmwood . I lived at 72nd and grays right over the bridge from St. Clements

    Malby | January 24, 2009 at 9:40 am | Reply

    Wow, I thought I was the only kid who grew up in the Meadows and was appalled at what the City did to that integrated working class neighborhood. They forced everyone out and left the land undeveloped for a decade. It was idyllic–our family had half a city block, we had fields and streams right across the way, we learned to dance at that drugstore opposite the public school near the fire station. Edmund Bacon, not the genius he’s been cracked up to be.
    Woodleigh | February 5, 2009 at 5:13 am | Reply

    Malby, my paternal grandparents lived at 8215 Dicks Avenue. Today the same house sits on a side street along Lindbergh Blvd.

    Across from their house, there was a field and we could see Wolf(e) School on the other side of that field. Do you remember that school?

    On one occasion my dear grandmother had some reason to cross that field and she took my cousin and me along. The ground was so soggy that my cousin would keep laying board after board in front of her to keep her feet from getting wet.

    My German grandmother always made “coffee milk” for her grandchildren—a small
    amount of coffee with a larger amount of milk and sugar. That was special…we didn’t get coffee at home!

    All my grandparents were born in the late 1800s.
    Malby | February 23, 2009 at 6:57 am | Reply

    phillyskyline’s piece on Eastwick is sadly misinformed. The writer has been drinking the Ed Bacon kool-aid. Eastwick was a vital integrated neighborhood BEFORE Mr. Bacon got his hands on it. He ruined it in 1960. He forced the residents out and bulldozed their homes. Then the land lay empty for decades. The hideous Korman construction is no substitute. The area reminds me of East Berlin.
    Clint West | May 10, 2009 at 3:00 am | Reply

    My mother grew up at 77th & Laycock and my father was born at 88th and Botanic. My grandmother was forced out in 1960. Most of the Meadows was racially mixed at least since the 1930s. My mother always said the area was targeted because it was under taxed. I think there may be 2 more reasons. In 1950, the Meadows was one of the few neighborhoods with outhouses. Due to it’s low elevation, the city would have needed to build a pumping station to put it sewage lines. Does anyone out there know if sewage lines were ever installed to the few remaining homes below Lyons avenue? I’ve also read that Korman holds development rights: they collect fees on anything built in Eastwick for doing nothing! The real crime was committed by Korman and the city officials they bribed for this sweetheart deal. These SOBs played god with people’s lives, just to make a buck. If hell exists, there a special place down there waiting for them. Apparently the skids are still “greased” at city hall, since no one questions what Korman does to earn these fees. Wouldn’t we all like to get in on some of that money?

    harry brown | July 19, 2010 at 5:31 pm | Reply

    what about penrose plaza and park and all the apartments korman built!! you don’t think that helped eastwick!
    Malby | July 19, 2010 at 5:50 pm |

    You can’t be serious. Penrose Plaza and Korman apartments helping Eastwick? That entire relationship was corrupt and the resulting ugly cold “planned” development was an insult to those who lived in the vibrant Meadows before Bacon and Korman ruined it.

    1. Clint, my family lived at 8809 Botanic Avenue. I am Judy Dobbs (Hedlund). My parents were Marian and Wally Dobbs and my siblings are Marian, Helen, Bobby, Barbara, Wally. I wonder where your father was born, that is, which house and what were their names?

  5. I also lived in the meadows. We lived by McLaughlins Bar at 89th and Tinicum. St Raphael school classes were so small that we had 3 grades in one room. A row of 6th a row of 7th and a row of 8th. We would do work while the nun taught the 6th grade etc. It was actually a GREAT neighborhood and it is true every body knew everybody and EVERBODY looked out for everyone else black or white. We were all one people. There will never be a place like the meadows again. I wish the world could be like it was in the meadows. There would be no problems.

    1. I agree, I went to St. Rays from 1957 to 1964, had friends who were white and black, no problem we were a people of peoples, played together, worked together, a real neighborhood of families no matter what!

    2. Mc Laughlin’s bar belonged to my Grandparents, my family,the Riley’s, lived up the street at 8640 Tinicum Ave. My mother grew up in the Meadows and raised our family there until 1960. I happened on this page after an older sister had just shown me an 1961 SW Philly Globe article discussing Wellington’s candy store at 8647 Tinicum Ave

    3. I went to school at St. Raphel’s, and you’re right: classes were so small we had 3 grades in one room. I was the class of 1963 — and we have 6th, 7th, and 8th grade in one room, taught by Sister Kathleen Miriam.

  6. I lived at 79th and Lyons Av. and I will never forget my childhood spent in the meadows. The freedom and the way everyone got along. I used to ice skate in the gutters , I remember the gas light man turning the gas lights on and the ice man , the milk man and I just could go on and on . What they did to those families and what they paid them for their homes was a complete disaster . That Korman Co. ruined so many peoples lives and destroyed families . Big Business ! SURE
    Marjorie Mckeon nee Wilson

    1. Small world I grew up in the meadows 1956 – 1972. We lived at 8020 Lyons ave. I too remember the milkman, the bread man, and the coal man. I walked to Wolf school and the house on the corner across from the school had a couple of horses. I used to play in the playground In the apartment complex across the street from the school. Our house is still standing, my dad passed in 92 and my sister moved in, she passed in 07 and now her son has taken it over. Good times and great memories.

  7. Hi,

    My grandparents lived in the Meadows at various addresses: Grovers, Bartram, and finally Lindbergh Blvd (now called Pontiac). I did my dissertation on Eastwick and have published several articles on the neighborhood; a number of former and current residents made my project possible by sharing their memories and photographs with me. I researched the neighborhood from the first census in 1790 through the 1970s. I would like to continue this research and am looking for more people with pre-Bacon memories and pics and documents to share as well as memories of the redevelopment. Please contact Anne at if you would be willing to share your stories with me. Thanks, Anne Krulikowski

  8. Hi!

    I grew up in Sharon Hill and attended Holy Spirit School. My parish, once upon a time, shared a border with St. Raphael. I didn’t know St. R. existed until after it was shut down. My dad pointed it out to me one day while we were driving down Bartram Avenue and said that St. R was the parish for the Meadows. I’m sorry I couldn’t have visited St. R while it was still functioning. What an interesting location for a church and school! I would love to obtain more information and pictures on St. R. If anybody is willing to share, I can be reached at

  9. I am sitting here reading all the stories of people having to move because of the redevelopment & Korman builders chasing them out. Well I was one of those people and all I could do was cry with every story. I went to St. Ray’s all through grade school and was very happy to say I graduated from St. Ray’s with a 8th grade class of 4 girls & 4 boys. Growing up in the meadows was real a real life experience for us as we had every nationality, every skin color & people who spoke many different languages. Guess what? we all got along and if you were a kid you better not do anything wrong because it was reported to your parents before you got home and not many people had telephones back then, our parents didn’t make excuses for us they just beleived what they were told and we got out just punishment. We use to have picnics in the fields and everyone was included as the Meadows did things together. As a kid growing up in the Meadows my Mom & Dad new where they could find us when it was time for lunch or dinner, we were always with our neighbors across the way who were black but skin color didn’t matter back then our parents new we were safe playing in their yard with their kids and vice versa. We didn’t have to go far if we needed something from a store as we had the corner store that sold darn near everything, Bernie’s at 78th & Lyons, we had Pop Ziegler’s at 79th street where his son had a beer delivery truck and the Lithuainian Club was at 79th street and also Cookie’s Bar I think was at 79th. My Mom & Dad were friends with the owners of the Airport Cafe and use to work for them on the weekends. I remember my uncle use to have pigeons and would join Bill Geider flying the pigeons, also I remember the guy who use to park his truck overnight on Lyons Avenue it was full of pigs for delivery. It was a very sad day when we had to move out of the Meadows. I have many memories of THE MEADOWS. My how things have changed.

    1. my family The Martino’s lived behind McLaughlin’s bar on 88th & Botanic Ave. We went to St. Ray’s grade school and my twin brothers Cy and Bee flew homing homing pigeons, I remember the night baseball games in the field across from our house, the Tinicum Athletic Leage, my brother Joseph Martino was out riding a horse with Jumbo Geider, back in the fields along the railroad tracks when he was thrown from his horse and died, june of 1962, we were among the last who had to move out. Joan Martino Hughes

    2. I lived at 8020 Lyons ave. and my sister married Bill Gieder’s nephew Richie Gieder. I remember him owning a couple of horses too

  10. I grew up in Eastwick on the 8500 block of Lindbergh Blvd, My siblings and I spend our summers helping our grandmother take care of her garden and many flowers. In her yard, was a cherry, pear, peach, black walnut and butterfly tree along with a grape harbor. On her back fence was blackberries. Grandmon used to make us peach , blackberry and apple pie and wine (not for the kids). We used to watch the neighbors’ pigeons fly around early in the morning and after 5:00pm.
    It was a fun and happy experience growing up in Eastwick.

      1. I need to check in more often….
        Danny Boy was our pony, 8508 Harley. We would get requests to stake him out in nearby fields that needed “mowing”, as the city didn’t keep up. And my Uncle Charlie at 8524 had the pigeons. I do not recall many folks on Lindbergh other than Ida & Dave Sheer on the corner.

  11. i’m home sick today (still working) and a friend sends meTHIS WEBSITE.
    ..a quick look and i see cathy S and anne K and sue Ward…i know you
    remember pudgie….letters will be accepted but i’m not a frequent e-mail
    reader, let alone a responder….me an my bicycle delivered the Bulletin
    all over the meadows. bye for now..pudge…
    btw –Dick Woods had both Pigs and Homing i recall, Dick
    would load all the neighbors pigeons (they were separately caged) onto
    the bed of his pig truck and drive them down south (Md,VA,and south)
    and release them all,at a designated spot, and the flocks would race
    north and overnite in farmers fields…my neighbor, Mr.Doc. would stay
    up late at night hoping to be the 1st one to clock in his pigeon(s)..
    drinks and bragging rights were involved

    1. i just came upon this website, my family lived on 88th & Botanic behind McLaughlins Bar, we went to St. Ray’s my brothers (twins) Billy and Charles, Cy and Bee had homing pigeons, i forgot the persons name, they would have the baseball games, in the field across the road from our house, the Tinicum Athletic League, the drugstore Childress Drugstore, was on the corner, and a dry cleaners, and a grocery store, I loved those days, i remember the Goldhans and the Geiders. Joan Martino Hughes 1/10/14

      1. Joan, does any one remember the LIMAs at 9005 Tinicum ave ? we raised our 6 children with fond memories of the Meadows .and their families.tell Cy to visit Glen at 2206 Arosa Ln, Wilmington De – Holiday Hills —I reside with him..I am a retired RN.still young, lost Mr Lima in 2007. Alice Lima

      2. Joan, we lived at 8809 Botanic Avenue. I am Judy Dobbs. My parents were Marian and Wally Dobbs. My siblings were Marian, Helen, Bobby, Barbara, Wally. I wonder if you remember any of us.

      3. My name is Mark Hughes and I went to St. Ray’s with Theresa Lima! We were just discussing the old days and we remembered when the Meadows kids would ride their horses to school. I remember taking the bus there and it was like going to school in the secret garden. I see pictures and just weep, but they are mostly happy tears.

  12. Hi Joan, Hope you and your family are well. I remember your family well. I believe Charlie & Billy were in my class and I remember the day we heard about Joe dying, that was a very sad day for everyone, he had such a memorable smile. How is Nick doing? If you were younger than the boys you may have been in my sisters class. We moved after I graduated from high school which was 1965 so I think we moved around 1967 to Woodland Ave. I sure do miss the old neighborhood.

    1. Hi Sue, I’m the oldest, one of the twins, Bee, died in April of 2013, his twin Cy, misses him so much he’s like a wandering soul, he was very close to Bee his identical twin, I’m so glad you remember about Joseph’s smile, the last picture we have of him he had a big smile on his face, we all miss him so much, Nick lives over here in South Jersey near me, he’s doing well, Our sister Dolores the youngest at 60 has been living in North Carolina the past 40 years, her husband died in October of 2009. I don’t remember you but I’m sure Cy and Nick do, I’ll ask them.
      Joan Martino Hughes 1/12/14

      1. joan I’m so sorry to hear about bee he used to babysit me I knew all your family went to st ray’s with was sad day when joe died I remember it sorry……oh bee was my little brother’s god father …me I went to trade school in los angeles and then to los angeles..then back home del tech 8yrs now in NEW ORLEANS

  13. I just found some terrific pics of St. Ray’s and its rectory! Unfortunately, this site will not allow me to attach them to this post. I will be happy to forward them to anybody who asks. Just email me at

  14. Stumbled upon this site and recognized a few folks. I lived 85th & Harley Ave, went to St. Ray’s with Bee, Cy, Joe, Nick Martino, Sue Ward, Billy Geider. Our hunting group: Joe Grieco, Bee & Cy, Norm Wethman, Joe Hyson, Mike Pacewic spent many hours roaming the fields during the 60’s. Our house (8508) was deemed to be at a proper grade (elevation) and spared condemnation along with some others in this area. And upon request we would stake our ponies out in the vacant lots to keep the weeds at bay (and their manure was a sought after item for gardens). My youngest brother Mike lives there still. I also noticed “pudgey” in the list. My wife Carol and his sister Suzanne were and still are best friends. Hi, walt.

    1. Hi Dan
      Good to see your name pop up. I can’t beleive your brother still lives in the Meadows. I didn’t know anyone could exist down there, can I still find the old roads or are they blocked off? I just saw the Geiders at my uncle’s funeral, he still looks good as his dad still looks pretty good also. We saw a lot of Meadowrats at the funeral, brought back good memories. I live in Boothwyn and trying to sell my house so I can retire to southern Delaware. Good to hear from you. Sue

      1. Hello Sue.
        The “new” Mario Lansa Blvd runs to 86th where the barriers are & then it’s wilderness. At times you need to navigate the “driver training area or an occasional missing manhole cover. Access to a stop on the high speed line is here also. To the right 85th & 86th are open From Eastwick over to what I new as Lindbergh (Luther Place). It’s a 2 block island more or less, Harley Ave is now Harley Place. Yes my brother is there in the old place & my cousin is next door with her family. The next used to be my aunt/uncle (Singley) but now has some strangers in it. There is another 1 block spit left at 82nd which is what is left of Harley Ave, no idea who is there though. The Google Earth view is a memory shock. I now live in GA & make it back north only a few times a year. Dan

  15. Hi Dan
    Thanks for the info. I was looking at the map my street83rd is gone, my grandparents lot is still on 80th & Lyons. I know Tommy Bazis is still living down there on Lindbergh I think. I can’t beleive after all these years people are still living there. I use to take my Mom for a ride every now and then to show here the neighborhood but we stopped when the roads got so bad. Now I’ll have to take a ride when the weather clears. Sue

  16. Hi – found this site while researching the many changes to our childhood neighborhood. My sisters (Maudine & Desiree) and I lived in the ex-Navy housing complex called Larchwood Gardens (still there), but we attended St. Raphael School from ’63 to ’69…not Wolfe School, which was just a block away on Lyons Ave. The area was an endless source of adventure just minutes from busy urban and suburban Philly. This was a simpler time when children (and dogs) roamed free !

    Since we walked to and from school each day, we had many opportunities and places to explore. There was an old abandoned record pressing plant on 84th St., Scotty’s bar (kid friendly for sodas but probably illegal), Reading Railroad tracks with open freight cars, and a long string of drainage reservoirs with turtles, carp, and frozen ice in winter. There was also the Tinnicum wildlife preserve, Pikey’s grocery store, Scott Paper, “U” bus to Woodland Ave (Benn and Benson movie theaters?), trolley tracks for trips to center city, and of course a large, international airport.

    Several names here are fond memories because of St. Ray’s. The Lima children (Steve, Glen ?, and Maria) were in our combined classes of course, as were the Klein sisters (Donna and Francie…maybe cousin Anna ?), the Millers (MaryAnn and younger brother), James Ahern, Fred Bytheway, Donna Grecho, and the three Ingersoll sisters.

    And of course there were the very kind and giving nuns and their tiny convent. Sometimes we would mow their lawn on Saturdays. Father Fitzpatrick lived in the fancy rectory next to the church/school. We would stay after school to clap erasers and sponge clean the black boards of chalk. Sweep the floors after moving desks attached to long wooden runners. The sisters actually gave me a key to the school’s back door that I would open early before the other kids and buses arrived. In later years after the schools were combined, the St. Ireneas kids had to promptly catch the bus for home each day, but we had plenty of time to get home…whenever.

    Thank you all for a great time growing up in The Meadows.

    – Michael G.

      1. Hi Steve – thanks for your reply. You were older (and wiser) than us and had graduated to another school by the late 60’s, but Glen and Maria were in my grade or one below. Little matter as we often had three grades in one classroom. I am in Minneapolis, Maudine (now Dean) is in San Diego, and Desiree is in Fergus Falls.

        We have visited the “ruins” a few times since then, only to get photos of the boarded up school and church before it was demolished. News reports indicate that the combined parishes school lasted at least until 1986. I was an alter boy until moving in the summer of 1969.

        Best Regards – Michael Gibson

      2. My name is Dolores Martino Troup. I often wondered about your family, and I think of them often. I am on Facebook. I hope to hear from you. Tell your Mom that I said Hi!! My sister Joan told me about this site.

      3. My name is Dolores Martino Troup. My sister Joan told me about this site. I am on facebook.

      1. Hi Steve, I found Glen’s address and number on the web site. I sent him an E-mail. Is anybody in your family on facebook? The phone number that I found for Glen’s, I was going to try and call last night but my grandbabies were over last night(2 year old twins) and it would have been impossible to talk with them running around. I am so glad that I found your family. Take Care.

      2. Twins run in your family… my mom was thinking about CY a few nights back…and wants to talk to him she’s worried about him..well noW you have her cell phone # 401-207-2153…she’s at GLENN’S IN DELAWARE AND I’M VISITING TOO FROM NEW ORLEAN’S

  17. Does anybody from the “Meadows” remember the DiPietro family? They lived on Botanic Ave, down from the Martino family. I remember Bonnie, Joyce,Dominic and Peter.Let them know that I was looking for them. I often wondered about them.Joyce and I were good friends.

  18. Hey, I am from 84th and Madison. Ray adamski and I was interested in a meadows reunion. ANYBODY know about it? I lived there in the late 1950 and would like to reconnect with friend and neighbors .

  19. Hi, my name is Bill McGehean and our family lived at 8737 Lisser ave. in the meadows. John McLaughlin, the bar on Tinicum Ave, was my uncle and another uncle Bill Farrell used to tend bar there during the lunch hour. My Brother, Jack, and I attended St. Ray’s from 1951-59/60(my brother is 1 year younger). I remember the Ward family, Sues brother was Richey. I also remember the Martino’s. Has anyone heard from John Ells/John Dutch or Tom Costello, both lived on Lindbergh Blvd. When we graduated from St.Rays my 8th grade class numbered 13 while my brother’s class numbered 8. I ‘d love to hear from old Eastwick people and hear what they have been doing over the years.

    1. Hello Bill, I was wondering if you could share more about your relationship to the McGehean family. I noticed that you lived in the house of my 2nd Great-Grandfather, Edward Leo McGehean, and your relation to Bill Farrell, Edward’s wife’s brother-in-law. I hope to hear back from you, even though you posted this over 3 years ago.

  20. I just found this site by happenstance. I lived with my grandparents in the 8200 block of Lindburg Blvd. during the 1940’s. Does anyone remember John and Tilly Gumminger? My uncles were Joe, John, and Fred. My aunts were Betty, Rita and Helen. My mom was Marie. Joey Hyson is my cousin and now lives in South Carolina. I attended Wolfe School for kindergarten and when my dad came home from the war we moved to Upland Ave. a block off of Woodland Ave. I went to 1’st grade at St. Clemens. After that my parents bought a house in Chester (Highland Gardens). Does anyone remember the Gladhill family from Lindburg Blvd? Also the Orr’s or the Namolie’s. We belonged to St. Ray parish. I have many fond memories of the Meadows and can’t believe I found this blog.

  21. I am one of the McLaughlins from 89th and Tinicum Ave. My Family was the one with all the kids. They always talked about Mr and Mrs Appleton and how nice they were. We also remember Dolores and Nickolas Martino and Cy and Bee!! Lets face it , there wasn’t anyone that wasn’t a nice person from the Meadows. Wish the rest of the world could be like all of them. It would a wonderful world if so. Also remember the Lima family.. Great people!

    1. STEVE LIMA here I miss it also ….which one are you I think I remember all…my mom is still running around like she’s 30 lol .I just came back to the area.5yrs fla,3yrs ala,1yr n.o la 6yrs school in California etc etc hope your family is in good health and fine

      1. hi  ann it’s very nice to hear from you and that your in good health…you can write me anytime

      2. Can you give me your contact information Steve? Does your mother have any pictures of St. Raphael’s ? you can contact me at 770-882-5860 or ardathkelley@yahoo,com or on face book Ardath Beckett Kelley on facebook.
        Ann Kelley

    2. I remember Florence. Are you her? Those were the days. Life was so much easy and care-free. I am the youngest of the Martino family. I am Dolores. My older sister and her daughter and grandchildren live in New Jersey, along with my brother Nicholas. My brother Cy, lives in Philly. My other brother Bee passed away in 2013.

  22. My Grandparents Lived down 81st and Suffolk …..Ferkler i know they knocked down the home but i dont think they ever used he land what a waste

  23. My name was Ann Kelley , that was my saints name. I went to Saint Raphaels in fact I remember being the only African American girl there in the 60’s I knew Steve Lima and Deloris. I miss the Meadows I you remember me please contact me!!!

    1. I believe that I can to your home one time. I tried to contact you on facebook. Does anyone have any picture of St. Raphael’s? I really miss everything about it.
      Ann Kelley
      Ardath Beckett Kelley (facebook)

  24. What a great site and what a great childhood I had living in the Meadows. I lived at 81st & Tinicum Ave across from Casano’s Bar and McCauley’s gas station. I walked back and forth to St. Ray’s for 8 years and I’m still walking. My Dad tended bar at the Brewster Club, worked at Standard Shop. I loved Miss Maggies candy store and I once rode on the truck with the Hog Island paraders.
    I remember when the Gypsies moved into the 94th St. neighborhood and as kid’s we were scared of them. I went to West Catholic Girl’s and traveled from the Meadow’s to school until ’52 when we moved to 73rd and Elmwood Ave. For me there wasn’t any place as wonderful for a kid. Another super thing is when they had the shuttle running from Eastwick Ave to the airport. The driver was Whitey and he would let us kids ride back and forth on the shuttle only if we didn’t act up and of course we didn’t. Thanks for letting me share my memories, it made my day.

    1. Are you the same Doreen Anderson I went to St.Ray’s with in ’49? My sister Susie McGurk was two years behind me. Out younger sister, Kathy, died three years ago this next month. She was 65.
      Jim McGurk Merritt Island Fl

  25. Do any of you know when Bow Creek was filled? It last appears on a map in 1942 but it completely gone by 1946. Just curious. No one seems to have any information about it including the Philadelphia Water Department.

  26. I’ve just created a blog: Devoted to those who grew up in the 19142/43/53. Check it out and feel free to leave a comment! I plan on posting lots of interesting info pertaining to SWP.

  27. Hi! I had to take down my blog. Please check out my new website: Lots of pictures and nostalgia from the old neighborhood. If you have any pictures or other interesting things you’d like me to post, please send them my way.

  28. My family were Meadow Rats in the twenties
    My aunt Helen was hit and killed by a hit and run driver on Bartram ave
    Her name was Helen Wosinko
    My family was Machunas and Wosinko

    Moved across Island Road to SW Philly, Muhlfeld St in the forties

    All except a few of us are in Holy Cross

    Great site
    I’m glad I found it

    Mike Carrigan

  29. I’m enjoying this conversation with people
    I’m 73 years old and have wonderful memories of growing up on Muhlfeld St which was across Island Road
    Went to St Clements Elementary and Patterson Elementary
    We belonged to St Clements Parrish
    At St Clements had many friends from the Meadows and visited long time family friends in the Meadows often
    We’d visit with the Kozlowski family on Bartram Ave and I remember those visits and chasing the Geese in the back yard as a little kid
    We as a family would go to the Polish American club often as well
    It was a wonderful way to grow up
    Those were innocent times and great people

  30. Hi Mike, When my parents and I moved from my grandparents house on Lindbergh Blvd. we moved to Upland way about two blocks from St. Clements school were I attended first grade. I have very fond memories of living in the meadows and playing in the fields across from our house at 8236 Lindbergh Blvd.

    1. There were riding stables on Upland
      I’d “Carry your order” which meant carry home your groceries from the A&P on Elmwood Ave to earn $1.50 which is what it cost to ride a horse from the stables across Cobbs Creek Pkw and along Cobbs Creek
      I was baptized at St Clements the old church

      We would walk across the train trestle across Cobbs Creek always afraid that a train would come around the corner when we were half way across

      Now and then when I would have the opportunity to visit Philly I’d walk the entire area

      It was a wonderful childhood there

      1. Hi Mike, we lived in a big old Victorian house at he corner of Upland and Gewwnway. We learned later that the house burned down. I remember walking with my mom past the riding stable to go to have picknics at Cobbs Creek. I receive my first communion at St. Clements. We moved out when my parents bought a house down in Chester. That was probably in 1947 or 1948 when Chester was a nice place to live.

      2. I remember that house
        I attended St Clements for one year 8th grade
        A guy in my class lived in that house
        That was about 1958 or so
        We would walk past the house to go to the stables and also to the creek
        At the corner of Cobbs Creek Blvd and Woodland Ave was the Bluebell Tavern which dated back to the revolutionary war and is said to be haunted by some redcoats who were killed there
        We played at the remains of the old waterwheel dam at the creek which upon my last walk thru the area maybe five years ago is now littered with old tires, washers and dryers and such thrown into the creek.
        The bronze historical marker that was embetted into the wall stolen
        It’s a terrible shame what has happened to the area

      3. So Mike, do you remember in what year that house burnt down? The address was 7101 Upland. We lived on the first floor and there was another apartment on the second. In our kitchen there was a stairway to the second and that was my bedroom, separated from the upstairs apartment. My dad and thought the room above the kitchen where I slept was at one time of he maid or cooks room. The house was probably built in the 1800’s. My grandparents (the Gumminger’s) lived at 8236 Lindbergh Blvd. I remember the Orr’s, the Gladhills, The Namolies and the Sharps from that block. Possibly you knew some of these families. Do you remember Pepper’s drug store that was on Island Rd. Across from the trolley turn-around? I don’t remember his first name but the son of the pharmacist attended first grade at St. Clements the same year I did. I’m 76 so a few years older than you.

      4. I remember a Johnny Orr. As I recall his father was a Philly cop.
        The sharps that I knew were on Holbrook St
        As kids we played at the trolley turn around
        There was a hogie shop on Elmwood Ave the name escapes me. It was owned by an Italian family from Italy The daughter attended St Clements spoke no English. She was at St Clents the same year I was. The hogie shop is still there and when I pass thru Philly now and then I eat there but it’s owned now by some Oriental types. There’s guys there that still make some very good hogies and cheese steaks though.
        Next to the hogie shop was a cleaners that I believe is still there.

        I was curious as to the history of your old home. It was a remarkable home that was originally built as a mansion of sorts. To me it looked like the Adams Family home.
        A little black kid lived in the home when I attended St Clements. He was a friend and a very poor family. When I asked him (stupidly) why he didn’t bring anything to donate for maybe it was Thanksgiving or Christmas, he responded by saying that his family was on the receiving end of the donations which made me feel like a real jerk
        There were other homes like it here and there around SW Philly . A couple were near the Hillco Homes model homes if you remember them and where they were. A couple more by the airport on the Industrial Hwy. They were abandoned and we played in them as well. One of them at one point a family named Griffin lived in who later lived on 71st street directly across from the old St Clements church , close to Woodland Ave.

        I only attended St Clements for one year. I didn’t do well there at all. Went To West Catholic for one year and not so good there either. I graduated from Valley Forge Military in 1963

    1. My grandparents (Krulikowski) lived at several addresses in the Meadows, which is where my father, Alfred Krulikowski, grew up. Several years ago, I did my dissertation on The Meadows and interviewed about 50 people (Harley, Doppler, Cook, Shaub, White, Messina, Regina Eichinger, Joe Warren, etc.) from there, a few still living there. Sadly, most of these old timers now seem to be gone. I am helping to organize a tour of Southwest Philadelphia for the Vernacular Architecture Forum for late May 2019 and they are very interested to include something of the old Meadows. Is there anyone still living in one of the older houses who would be willing to allow people to see it? Please contact me, Anne Krulikowski, at

      1. I return to Philly now and then and stay at motels close by
        I enjoy visiting and the memories
        Regretably I have no idea who lives there anymore.
        I dearly love the memories and the visits and drink some beer at The Willows which is still there or was a few years back.
        Willows was close to the Meadows but not in the Meadows.
        I dont know any of the residents though.

        Keep us informed please
        It wont be all that long that there will be anyone left that remembers the Meadows and/or lived there

      2. hi anne…my name is walt ludwig …call me sometime soon, about your house visits. i may be able to help you.

    2. Hello Mike, I stumbled on this site today while shaking my family tree and noticed your remarks about Upland stable.
      I grew up on Bellford St. btw 74-75th Elmwood Park section. I went to St Clements 1-7 grades and transferred to Tilden then Bartram.

      When I was about 8 in 1962 my grandpop got me, my brother and sister) a pony for Christmas and we kept him (Chrissy) at Upland stable. We bought Chrissy from a guy somewhere down in the heart S. Philly named Sam Merski.
      I remember, more than once sneaking out of St Clements school yard at lunch time and going to the stable. Of course when we returned we would smell like horses and get smacked around by the nuns. It was worth it..

      We went on to having horses at the stable for several years as we grew up. I remember Al Kromlee <- spelling??. Al was the owner of the "hack horse" business. Al was a single guy and he lived above the bar on Paschal ave & 70th st.
      Caroline was a lady in the big house next to the stable. She owned all the property. She had a couple huge great danes I recall.

      If you recall, the riding trail for the most part, followed cobbs creek and also skirted the edge of Mt Moriah cemetery for a bit then back to the creek. I rode that trail hundreds of times. Some days 4-5 times a day…

      As I mentioned, I'm shaking my family tree and not long ago discovered that I was riding literally within 40 to 50 feet from my Grand parents grave (Dads side) and never ever knew it. Not a clue!
      I never knew anyone from Dads side. McKnight… Not even a single photo.
      That blows my mind every time I think of it.. They were right there and never knew it.

      We also rode many many times from upland down to Tinicum and the meadows. In fact we sold a pony to Freddie Bytheway back then.
      In my later teens we would hang out a lot with friends "down the meadows". the Germans, Greeko's, Bytheway's and others I can't recall all the names.
      I remember St Clements for at least a few years sent kids St Rays school on Tinicum ave. We had very crowded classes in Clements. I remember like 60-70 in a class at Clements..
      I also remember the U bus ran from 62 & Woodland to the airport and one of the drivers, Bill, would let us ride the bus back and forth free for hours, as long as we didn't get too stupid and rowdy. He was just giving us an alternative to hanging on the corners getting in trouble I suppose. We complied most of the time.
      I remember that A&P on Elmwood and GE plant as well.
      I got my first Mini bike from "Penn Jersey" store at Island rd and Woodland Ave. Next to Pep Boys…

      Oh yeah, The hoagie shop at the trolley turn was named Falone's". The families name.
      They opened another shop on Main street in Darby later on in the 70's or 80's, can't recall exactly when..
      The dry cleaners next door was named Fox Cleaners..
      Remember a Doctor Fox office at the corner of Elmwood & 73rd??
      The other side of Elmwood from the bowling alley..

      They were good, scratch that, GREAT times back then.

      I appreciate you stoking my memory of the Upland stable days….
      I hope I added something to your memory of the stables… The office/tack-room with the pot belly stove going in the winter.
      Ah yeah, you go home smelling like horses and smoke… I wouldn't trade it……

      1. Hi Dennis, I enjoyed reading your post. It stirred up some memories on my part. We lived for about a year at the house on the corner of 71st and Upland. The number was 7101. That was right down the street from the stable. I attended St. Clements for first grade I think the year was 1946-47. I remember walking past the stables when my mom would take my sister and I for a picnic along Cobbs creek. My grandparents live in The Meadows at 8236 Lindbergh Blvd. where I lived for the first 5 years of my life during the war. Attended Wolf school for kindergarten.

      2. Hi John, wasn’t there a store directly across the street from you at the top of Upland St? I kinda remember one there. Google the address and get the satellite view…. It’s not what it used to be for sure…
        I remember back late 60’s when Al was running the stable, there was some type of ordinance or something that prohibited the owner from knocking down the old wood barn and rebuilding. They could do repairs but no rebuilds…

        I went St Clements until 1/2 way through 7th grade. I have a brother who was one year ahead of me and wasn’t exactly a model student, so I sometimes paid a price just for sharing the same last name..
        I remember the very first day of 7th grade. We introduced ourselves to the nun when we entered the classroom for the first time. It comes to my turn, I say, good morning, my name is Dennis McKnight, and I immediately get a nice crisp whack right across the face, and she says, don’t be like your brother. LOL… He left for Tilden the year before.
        All’s well that ends well I suppose.
        I also remember Tarren’s <–sp?? store at 71st & Woodland, and a big bar on your side of Woodland ave at 71st. And "The Globe" local newspaper was published on Woodland ave down closer to Island rd.. I worked there as a kid for a few weeks.

        I have an old video clip I had converted from my Moms old 8mm camera days. Its only 1 minute of Upland stable days.
        If you wanna see it I don't know how to post it here but I could email to you. You'll probably get a kick out of it.
        I'm the kid on the palomino horse (Chester) going out the drive with some riders.. Yipee eye aye cowboy……
        The little Italian lookin dude in the T shirt is/was Sammy Payne. He was a So. Philly cowboy.
        He had a truck he sold produce from door to door.. Really cool guy..

  31. Dennis and John C
    Thanks for the participation and sharing the memories
    At Upland Stables my favorite horse was “Mike”
    Big black and white horse and yes, we’d ride across Cobbs Creek Pkw then down a steep hill where the horses would run at a gallop
    Dispite my last name I’m Lithuanian and there was a strong Lithuanian/Russian/Polish population in the meadows
    My grandmother Machunas had a Russian boyfriend
    He spoke no Lithuanian and she spoke no Russian
    He spoke just enough English to get by and told me that he wanted me to ride horses with his grandson in the meadows which we never did…………….BUT…………as it turned out when I attended St Clements for just one year there was a kid that he and I were a fight ready to happen all the time.
    His name was Coulter
    And as you might have already guessed we found that he was the grandson and lived next door to Mrs Koslowski on Bartram Ave
    We became friends then of course

    Yes, the hogie shop was Falones
    They were from Italy and spoke very little English
    They had a daughter in Sister Ann Regina’s class at St Clements which was my 8th grade class also for the one year I was there.
    The daughter spoke no English at all
    When I pass thru Philly I still eat at Falones although it’s owned by some asian folks now

    I lived on Muhlfeld St which was between Buist and Dicks, 70th and 71st
    I attended Patterson elementary, then Tilden, then St Clements for one year, then West Catholic for one year, but graduated from Valley Forge Military in 1963
    I think I was a real PITA kid

    Things change of course but walking thru the old neighborhood today is not a nice experiance

      1. I dont know
        I only knew him as “Coulter” or as I recall “Colt”
        As a little kid we would visit the Koslowski’s in the Meadows on Bartram Ave
        As a little kid I would play with another boy who lived next door to Mrs Koslowski
        Many years later when I attended St Clements and this young man and I were like oil and water, we didn’t like each other and it was always nose to nose.
        The two of us were ready to tangle at the drop of a pin all the time
        Somehow we then realized who we were and that we play’d togeather as little boys and he was the grandson of the Russian gentleman who wanted me to ride horses with him.
        He was the kid I always played with when we were visiting the Koslowski’s
        We got quite a laugh out of that considering we were always ready to give each other a fat lip, a black eye, or both.

        Wonderful way to grow up
        SW Philly and the Meadows were a special place back then.
        At Mrs Koslowski’s house on Bartram Ave as was I guess the entire block or more, there was no indoor plumbing
        Mrs Koslowski had a pot in the toilet and would carry the pot downstairs now and then to the back yard, lift a metal sheet and dump the pot.
        My grandmother told me that I could get a job draining the holes in the ground and when I returned home in the evening I could wait in the back yard and she would come out and hose me off.
        I’d chase the Geese around Mrs Koslowski’s back yard

        It was a very special place
        A wonderful way to grow up
        My family lived on Bartram Ave and my aunt Helen Wosinko was killed by a hit and run driver on Bartram Ave back during the prohibition era
        Family later moved across Island Road to Muhlfeld St I think around the late 1930’s

        When I visit now on occasion I realize what I loved just aint there no more!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  32. Thanks Mike. I’m thinking now that I may be barking up the wrong tree about Ronnie. When I read Coulter, I thought that was Ronnie but i duuno now. I don’t remember knowing anything of his family. I remember him from hanging around the stable, and he lived with someone on Elmwood ave at 77th. I don’t think it was family, but I’m not sure of that. I don’t know what school he went to.
    I did however enjoy your story about being toe to toe with Colt so much and also you and your Grandmom hosing you off. Grandmoms were tough cookies back in the day. I know mine was..

    Good stuff Mike..

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