CAMDEN, NEW JERSEY

BRIDGE CAFE
also known as Tom Kenney's Bridge Cafe
100 Pearl Street

The Bridge Cafe had its origins at 546 North Front Street, the corner of Front and Birch Streets. Thomas Kenney, who had operated a saloon on Broadway, acquired this property and ran it with his wife until he died. Upon his passing, his widow, Mrs. Mary Kenney, ran the bar until construction of the Delaware River Bridge forced her to move, around 1922. At that point her son, Thomas J. Kenney, took over the business, and moved it to 100 Pearl Street.

The Bridge Cafe stood at 100 Pearl Street, and was a popular spot in Camden for many years. During the Prohibition years, Thomas J. Kenney, John A. Smith and Charles H. Schwab ran the bar, which was popularly known as Tom Kenney's. Thomas Kenney later ran a highly successful bar and restaurant in the 500 block of Market Street, opposite City Hall, and a second establishment on Route 70 in what is now Cherry Hill NJ.

William F. Gannon had acquired the establishment by 1935. The bar remained open and in the Gannon family, operating first as Gannon's Bridge Cafe and by the late 1940s as Gannon's Tavern,  through at least 1977.

Camden Courier-Post - October 31, 1931

3 CAMDEN CAFES ARE CLOSED BY U. S. COURT
Bronx, Arcadia and Kenney's Ordered Closed by Montana Judge
RUNNEMEDE ROADHOUSE ALSO COMES UNDER BAN
'Soft Drink" Emporiums Sold Illegal Beer, Federal Agents Charged

Three of Camden's most popular cafes and a Runnemede roadhouse, described on the permits as "soft drink establishments" but known otherwise to thousands of South Jersey and Philadelphia thirsty, were ordered padlocked yesterday.

The establishments are: "Tom" Kenney's Bridge Cafe, 100 Pearl Street, the Bronx Cafe, 29 North Third Street, the Arcadia Cafe, 201 Federal Street, and the Marland Club, Black Horse Pike, Runnemede.

The padlocks were ordered in Trenton by Federal Judge George Bourquin.

The four places were raided several months ago by federal agents and the padlocks were ordered on the strength of "beerometer" tests made on the premises which disclosed the "soft drinks" were of illegal alcoholic content. Such tests recently were declared legal by Bourquin.

Owners or operators of the establishments are listed in the orders as follows: Bridge Cafe, Thomas J. Kenney, John A. Smith and Charles H. Schwab; the Bronx Cafe, Thomas J. Boland and Florence Scannell; the Arcadia Cafe, William and Sophia Siobodzian, and the Marland Club, Edward Smith and Gottlieb Mayer, president of the Camden German Maennerchor.

An attempt to rob the Kenney Cafe last May 24 failed when police shot and killed Felix Zubelski, 18, of 1039 Diamond street, and wounded Joseph Lenkowski, 21, of 1226 Chestnut Street, as they attempted to escape.

 Judge Bourqin, who presides over the Montana circuit, was ordered to New Jersey in July to aid the state judge in clearing the crowded court dockets.

Camden Courier-Post - February 4, 1938

MRS. MARY KENNEY DIES MOTHER OF CAFE OWNER

Mrs. Mary Kenney, 72, of 213 North Third Street, mother of Thomas Kenney, cafe and restaurant proprietor, died last night in Cooper Hospital.

Mrs. Kenney conducted a saloon at Front and Birch streets for 25 years before the building of the Camden bridge. Her children were young when her husband Thomas died and she continued the business established by him.

After the building of the bridge her son took over the management of the saloon and moved it to Front and Pearl Streets. From there he moved to the present address at 531 Market Street.

Mrs. Kenney was taken to the hospital on January 9.

Other children surviving are three daughters, Mrs. Catherine Roberts, Mrs. Anna May Geoghan and Miss Marguerite Kenney.

 

Camden Courier-Post
February 24, 1938

Eagles Hall
Washington Street
Broadway

 

 

Hi-Hat Club - Bridge Cafe - Kernan's Cafe- Harry's Taproom - Clancy's Cafe - Big Ed's Place
Larry's Cafe - Lynch's Cafe - Morgan's Cafe - Nittinger's Cafe
Big Horn Cafe - Jack's Grille - Cooperson's Auto Body - Scotty's Thist'es
Vari's Cafe -
Davalo's Cafe - Bush's Cafe - La Victoria - Shantytown Cafe - Billy's Cafe
Phil Hart's Cafe -
Pavonia House - White Owl Inn - George's Grill - Dick's Rendezvous
Dragon Inn - Royal Inn -
Bismark Cafe
Ginger's Cafe - Daly's Cafe - Kenure's Cafe - Knauer's Cafe - Oaklyn Inn - Bellevue Inn
Fourteenth Ward Democrat Club - Blanche's Cafe - Duke Gartland's - Regan's Cafe
Bettlewood Cafe - Mulvihill's Cafe - Barrington Cafe - Chews Landing Hotel - Blackwood Cafe
Laurel Inn - Starr's Cafe - Gruber's Inn - Welcome Inn - Somerdale Bowling Alley

Drink Up!
The Bars, Taverns, and Clubs of Camden

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