The cornerstone of Morgan's Hall, or as it was called until about 1867, Odd Fellows Hall, at the southeast corner of Fourth and Market Streets, was laid on October 5, 1848. The building was dedicated on November 8, 1849. It was originally a three-story structure sixty feet long and thirty six feet wide. The venture proving too great an undertaking for the lodges interested, it was sold about 1851 by the Sheriff to John Morgan for about $6,000 and re-named Morgan's Hall, by which it was ever since known. In 1866 Morgan added sixty feet to the eastern end of the building and also a suite of rooms in the rear for a private residence. The entire building was covered with stucco in May of 1867.
Prior to the opening of the Temple Theater, directly across the street at 415 Market Street, Morgan's Hall was considered the fanciest public meeting place in Camden. In May of 1889, Walt Whitman celebrated his 70th birthday with a banquet at the Hall.
Located at 418 Market Street, Morgan's Hall sat adjacent to St. Paul's Episcopal Church. Walter Giffins, who lived in Pennsauken, was managing the premises in the mid-1930s. His wife Ernestine had been a dance instructor, and during the the 1930s dances were held there. A 1933 newspaper advertisement mentions The Owl's Studio as occupying the premises and hosting a dance, and I believe it is quite possible that may have been the Giffins' business.
Morgan's Hall was still standing and in use as late as 1947. Morgan's Hall does not appear in the 1959 New Jersey Bell Telephone Directory.
Prologue to Walt Whitman's
America: A Cultural Biography
Ticket - April 7, 1875
front and Reverse Sides of Ticket
|Camden Home for Friendless Children - Morgan's Hall - Wong Chinfoo|
|Elizabeth O'Bryan - Florence Eugenia Barnard|
|Philadelphia Inquirer - February 18, 1890|
|Sons of Temperance - Morgan's Hall|
|Philadelphia Inquirer - May 19, 1893|
|Hayden West - Linden Guards - Morgan's Hall|
|Philadelphia Inquirer - May 19, 1893|
Browning Council No. 122, Order of United American Mechanics
Minerva Counci No. 5, Daughters of America - Morgan's Hall
|Philadelphia Inquirer - March 15, 1904|
|Legion of the Red Cross - Morgan's Hall|
Camden Courier-Post - February 10, 1933
CLUB DANCE TONIGHT
The Eleventh Ward A. C. will hold its first annual dance tonight at Morgan Hall, Fourth and Market streets. Three South Jersey and one Philadelphia District A. A. U. champion will be the honored guests. The honored guests are Phil Mungo, Bill Toomey, Georgie Wright and Eddie Gehringer. The committee in charge of the dance is composed of James Zimmerman, chairman, Charles Hutchinson, Ed Peard, Jr., and James McCann..
ATTEND RECEPTION HERE
More than 100 attended the wedding reception in Morgan's Hall. Miss Mary Chaslong was bridesmaid and Nicholas Siteverio best man. Anthony Jennetta was in charge of arrangements. The couple will live at 1131 Christian Street, Philadelphia, after a honeymoon trip.
June 6, 1933
Camden Courier-Post - February 7, 1936
KING'S TALENT CONTEST DRAWS 12 PERFORMERS
Twelve South Jersey entertainers will meet tonight in Morgan Hall, Fourth and Market streets, to start the Talent Contest sponsored by King's, leading credit jewelers. Five prizes will be awarded and the first three winners will appear in the finals to be held on March 7.
The contestants are Mickey Rogers, of 218 Friends Avenue, tap dancer; Leona Johnson, 441 Atlantic Avenue, singer; Eddie Osborn, 910 North Nineteenth Street, radio performer; Ethel Papp, 20 Morse Street, dancer; John O'Neill, 874 York Street, blues singer; Marshall Wix, Lindenwold, singer and dancer; Isabella Esbensen, 2001 River Avenue, known on the stage in this vicinity; Miss "X," Camden's mystery singer, who will appear masked; Bob Bender, 146 South Thirty-second Street, local Bing Crosby; Edith Kunitz, Lindenwold, marathon dancer and entertainer; Eddie Clarkson, 139 North Thirty-fourth Street, tap dancer, and Bonnie De Lisle, 1012 Haddon Avenue, dancer.
The dance in connection with the contest wi1l begin at 9 o'clock. Music will be .furnished by the Griffin Brothers orchestra.
Camden Courier-Post - February 9, 1936
FIVE PRIZES PRESENTED AT CONTEST OF 'TALENT'
Talent contest and dance got under way to a big start when the first
preliminaries were held at Morgan Hall,
and Market Streets. Miss "X," Camden’s mystery singer,
pleased the crowd with a display of talent. She won first prize, a ring presented by King's. She sang masked and refused to
reveal her identity in spite of insistent demands of the audience. The
second prize, a month's tuition at the Warrington School of Dancing, was
awarded to Miss Bonnie De Lisle, who sang and danced her way into favor.
Bob Bender's rendition of "Brother, Can You Spare a Dime," won
third prize, two ringside seats to Charlie Grip's wrestling bouts. Fourth
series of treatments at
the De Marco
Beauty Shoppe, was won by Miss Leona Johnson. Mickey Rogers'
nimble feet won fifth prize, a
wallet set presented by the
The first three prize winners will I compete in the finals, to be held March 7, the winner of which will receive a wrist watch. Eddie Roecker, winner of the “Fame and Fortune" contest, acted as master of ceremonies and judged the contest. The music for dancing was furnished by the Griffin Brothers and their orchestra.
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