There definitely is something special about Staten Island. I was born there in 1939 and
lived on Wadsworth Ave. My father owned a grocery store on Bay St. one block up from the Quarentine. Went to St. Marys on Bay St. and moved to Townsend Ave. Moved to Stapleton (Sand St.) and went to St. John Baptist School on Jackson St. I worked at Klingles Grocery Store (Cor of Van Duzer and Beach Sts.) from 53 to 58 while I attended St. Peters HS. Moved to Broad St and then to Grant City in 59.
Why the long bio? Most of my young life was spent up and down Bay St. from Fort Wadsworth to St. George. In Rosebank I could walk along any street and if I got into trouble any number of mothers who knew my father would give me a hit in the head. But I also remember that if I had a problem I could have gone to any house on the block and gotten help. That is what we use to call neighborhood. Everybody knew everybody and we watched out for one another. WE don't have that today. Besides, who walks or takes the bus anymore in urban America.
I fondly remember walking from Stapleton to Tompkinsville on a hot July day to go to the pool or Cromwell Center. We got in the pool for free in the mornings. In the afternoon we walk to the movies (Paramount or Liberty or Rex theaters) and spend all afternoon in there for a dime.
It was a great place to grow, mature, get a good education and make lifetime friends. I often wish my children could have had some of the experiences I had growing up on Staten Island. They created a certain character of independence and adventure.
One of those lifetime friends is my wife, one of my youthful adventures. Corporate moves took us to Saginaw MI, Chicago IL, Portland ME, back to Chicago and finally to Atlanta. They were all wonderful but they were not like the Staten Island I grew up in. Some poet once wrote that you can never go back home but this web site proves the poet wrong.
I enjoy the memories shared by you all (woops, sorry - yous guys) and would love to hear from anyone who grew up in the 50's or went to any of the schools I attended or and Stapletonites out there.
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