The purpose of this blog is to celebrate, discuss, add to and learn about local history in the Caldwells. Our hope is that this will become a place for everyone interested in the Caldwells to come together and share memories and reflections about the history of this place we live and work in.
We at the library want to share with you some of the wonderful photographs and memorabilia that reside in the library’s Local History Collection and hope that these glimpses into the past will inspire you to share your own stories!
This picture above was taken over a century ago when Bloomfield Avenue was a dirt road. It is part of our Gene Collerd Archive Collection and an enlarged copy of it is on permanent display in the library.
The boys and men at the right are gathered in front of the old Caldwell Pharmacy which housed the Post and Telegraph offices back then. If you look closely you can see signs advertising Western Union and a Long Distance Telephone Station. On a third sign, you can see the first ever Bell Logo (adopted in 1889, the year that William Gray invented the public coin telephone).
The First Presbyterian Church building with its slender steeple and stone walls. which you see at the left, was completed in 1874 not many years before this picture was taken. It replaced the wooden Meeting House that burned down in 1872.
This photo was included in Sister Loretta Clair and Norman F Brydon’s Caldwell Yesterday and Today, published in 1976 by the Caldwell Bicentennial Committee and in John J. Collins’ 1998 Remembering the Caldwells, two fascinating books on the history of the Caldwells which are available to borrow from the library.