You can't really talk about North Camden without talking about Pyne Point. After all, when William Cooper first settled in South Jersey, he named the place Pyne Point. The name Camden came much much later.
As Camden expanded, so did North Camden. The wave of construction that swept the city in the 1890s and early 1900s was especially strong in North Camden, where, prior to then had seen little development north of State Street and east of North 3rd. By the time America entered World War I, North Camden had been almost completely built out, and the need for a better park was evident.
Although the Cooper Mansion was being used as a public library early in the 20th Century, the park itself was not anywhere its later size or status. Private groups such as the Camden Motor Boat Club and the Camden Tennis Club built facilities there. In the early 1900s the City of Camden began leasing the property on a yearly basis, and eventually acquired title.
The great expansion of Pyne Point Park would come in the mid-1920s. Giving the citizens of North Camden a decent park was one of the priorities in 1923 for the newly- formed Board of Commissioners, which had just replaced the existing Camden City Council. Over the next few years under the direction of Commissioner H. Raymond Staley and Superintendent of Parks Benjamin R. Denny, many improvements were made, and Pyne Point Park was truly a place of beauty to rival any in the city, or the state, for that matter. The old Cooper Mansion was kept as best possible, rest rooms were installed, and ball fields were laid out.
In later years North Camden finally got its own Junior High School, as Pyne Point Junior High was built adjacent to the park in 1957. Municipally owned radio Station WCAM built its transmitter building and antenna tower at the northwest corner of the park.
Sadly, as North Camden declined, the park did as well. The burning of the Cooper Mansion is symbolic of what became of North Camden, a burned out shell, abandoned, and forgotten by an uncaring public and city government on the other side of Admiral Wilson Boulevard.
Still, hope lives on in Camden, and perhaps the winds of change that are sweeping the city in 2004 will breathe new life into Pyne Point Park. North Camden has a core of civic organizations such as Leveanhouse, the North Camden Land Trust, Camden Churches Organized for People, and Concerned Citizens of North Camden which may be able to effect the restoration of the park. In 1980 Rodney Sadler founded Pyne Poynt Marine Services at the foot of 7th Street, and hopefully the boating community will return to North Camden as well.
|Pyne Poynt Park in 1915|
Benjamin Cooper House at Pyne Point,
North 7th & York Streets.
Houses on Erie and
Benjamin Cooper House at Pyne Point,
North 7th & York Streets
|The Cooper House was made into a library, known as the Pyne Point Library||Pyne
Postcard mailed 1907
|Pyne Point Park||The
Camden Motorboat Club
Pyne Point - 1910
This photo of the library was taken in the early 1900s. Note the telephone pole that does not appear in the postcards above.
The Real Estate Advertising Brochure
An Historic Spot in Camden Interesting to You
Wood Manufacturing Co., Head of Seventh Street, Camden NJ
who were building and selling 50 houses at Seventh and York Streets
(My best guess is that this dates about 1910 - Phil Cohen, June 2004)
|"Pyne Poynt Tennis Courts"|
|"Pyne Poynt Tennis Courts"|
|Camden Motor Boat Club House|
|Pyne Poynt Library from Sixth Street Houses|
|Fourth of July, 1923|
from July 4, 1923
MIDDLE: Carl W. Weber in his bay carriage, in front of the hot dog stand: "DOGS 5 CENTS"
|Camden Courier-Post - June 6, 1932|
|Camden Courier-Post - June 9, 1932|
Henry W. Aitken - Pyne
Poynt Athletic Association - Frank
J. Hartmann Jr.
|Camden Courier-Post - June 1, 1933|
POYNT STARS PLAN 4TH OF JULY PROGRAM
for the financing of the thirty-third anniversary of the Pyne Poynt
Athletic Association to be observed with an all-day program of sports and
entertainment at Pyne Poynt Park
July 4, will be made at a meeting of the ways and means committee of the
association tonight at the clubhouse, 939 North
than 30,000 persons attended last year's celebration and more than 150
prizes were awarded.
tentatively planned include a children s parade at 9.30 a. m., under the
supervision of Isaac Kyler; memorial services at 11 o'clock, under the
direction of William
B. Sullender, and sporting events for men, women and children under
the direction of Alfred J. Ross, Jr., to start at 1.30 p. m.
Motion pictures will be shown out of doors again this year for children starting at 9 p. m., under the direction of Robert J. Nelson, while Samuel G. Dickinson, Jr., will again have charge of the dance to start at the same time, with awarding of prizes at 10.30 p. m.
|Camden Courier-Post - June 25, 1933|
ANNOUNCED FOR FOURTH PARADE
Hundreds of Children Will Join Organizations in Pyne Poynt Program
Route of the annual Fourth of July parade of the Pyne Poynt Athletic Association was announced last night. The event, one of the out standing Independence Day programs in South Jersey, promises to surpass any previous undertaking of the association.
Hundreds of school children and organizations are planning to march. The line will form on Erie Street, west of Seventh, turn south on Seventh street to York, east on Eighth, south to State, east to Ninth, south to Vine, west to Eighth, south to Elm, west to Sixth, north to State, west to Fifth, north to Grant, west to Fourth, north to York, east to Fifth, north to Bailey, east to Sixth, north to Byron street and then enter Pyne Poynt Park.
Named as parade marshal is Isaac Kyler, while John R. Schultz again will have charge of school children. William Hughes and George Zeitz will serve as assistant marshals. The Pyne Poynt Garden Club is planning to march and compete for a share of the 250 prizes to be awarded. Among the awards will be a token for the best decorated home in the Tenth Ward. A meeting of the committee in charge is to be held at 7.30 p. m. tonight at 939 North Fifth Street,to discuss plans for raising funds in the First Ward.
August 5, 1935
|Camden Courier-Post - February 25, 1938|
POYNT CLUB FETE SET TOMORROW
27th Annual Get-Together Will Hear Gordon Mackay Tell of Oldtime Sports
When members, of the Pyne Poynt Social Club gather in the club's headquarters, southwest corner of Fifth and Erie streets, tomorrow night it will be to mark the twenty-seventh, annual get-together which will be observed with a banquet.
Harry F. Walton, first president of the organization, which was formed in the latter part of January, 1911, will be toastmaster. He served as head of the club in 1911 and 1912.
Gordon Mackay, member of the news staff of the Courier-Post newspapers' and an authority on sports, will be the speaker. Mackay will give highlights on sporting activities with which he has become so familiar in his 40 years of newspaper, work. Frank H. Ryan, managing editor of the Courier-Post, will be a guest.
"Many of the members of the club have gone far afield from Camden,” said Walton, "but on the occasion of the annual dinner they all try to get back home' and rekindle the friendships' made when they were kids up here in North Camden."
Served As Freeholder:,
Walton, elected to the Board of Chosen Freeholders of Camden county as an independent Republican from the Tenth ward, served on the board in 1923 and, 1924. Born in Philadelphia, his parents brought him to Camden at an early age and he has lived in North Camden ever since. He has taken an active interest in civic affairs of the community.
"We believe that this year will be the best banquet that we have ever had," he said.
Present officers of the club are: Ed H. Winters, president; A. S. Kahnweiler, vice president; Hamilton J. Batten, recording secretary; Frank Kelley, financial secretary; Walton, treasurer; Alfred J. Rose, Jr., house chairman, and George Ash, trustee-at-large.
Kelley heads the banquet committee with the following members: Ash, Batten, Walton, Richard Barry, Kahnweiler, E. Caskey, Jacob Dreher and Nick Adezio. Rose is chairman of the entertainment committee, with Robert Johnson, William X. Huber, Jr. and Ellery Caskey as other members.
Club's Wide Membership
Other members of the club are Herman Brandt, Victor J. Paxson, Herbert Schaeffer, William N. Cann, Harry G. McKinney, Louis Schwaiger, David E. Barry, Thomas Kerr, Ren Plum, Ronald K. Lawrinson, William Brandt, William Walton, George A. E. Rheinbold,
Charles Seybold, Fred Schwaiger, J. Allen Brown, George Greene; J. Russell Taylor, Harry Edginton, Samuel Payne, Trester W. Vissell, George H. Schwaiger; George W. Muschlet; Arthur Messler; R. Thornton Greene, William C. Pommerer, Charles Glendenning, William E. Smith, Walter T. Adams, John T. Beal, Otto E. Braun, John Deardon, James Selby, William T. Steele, William Begg and Alfred Huber.
Also Samuel Burrows, William J. Denham, Thomas R. Peacock, Frank H. Haines, Clarence Rudolph, Albert R. Heap, Herbert C. Battle, William Oberst, Fred Stahl; John Begg, Charles Stahl, Charles E. Packer, Paul E. Mount, City Commissioner Frank J. Hartmann Jr., Raymond Rickley, Ralph T. Githens, Howard Hurlock, Martin Steer, Harry Kerr, William Reimer, Curtis O. Sangtinette and Einar Odergaard. John LaRue, Jr., is president of the junior club of the Pyne Poynt Social.
|Camden Courier-Post - February 28, 1938|
Walton - Gordon
Mackay - Dave Barry
- Charles Glendenning
PYNE POINT PARK was a lovely community park with hundreds of deciduous trees, a water fountain, concrete walkways, a gazebo, a bandstand (Um-pah! Um-pah!), a wading pool, a swimming pool, and baseball diamonds. We gathered there for most sports and events- mostly to meet girls as we became teenagers. Fourth of July was the major event at the park:
Parades, games, contests, band music, plenty of free ice cream and cotton candy. And, later at night when it was plenty dark, fireworks (Ah! Oh! Beautiful! Clap-clap!).
Later (during the war) the Army came to Pyne Point Park and they brought their anti-aircraft guns. They took over the pool, camped on the diamonds, and wired off the open spaces where they placed their guns, listening devices, search lights, and ammo bunkers. That was the end of the park as I knew it and I never returned there after the war.
Cleanup at Beautiful Pyne Poynt
Americorps and New Jersey Community Water Watch led a cleanup at Pyne Poynt Park in North Camden. A large group of volunteers from The Waters Community Worship Center of Hurffville also made a major contribution to the effort.
Here are the best of the photos we shot while recording, not intended as full photojournalistic coverage. Courtesy of Life-Net Radio Online.
|Thanks to John Ciafrani, who provided the Camden First article, for his help in creating this page|
o.a.: 129 feet (39.30 m) Builder:
New York Shipbuilding Co., Camden, NJ Year
of construction: 1904 Contact
price: 89,030 $ Illumination:
Cluster of 3 oil lens laterns raised on each mast
Length o.a.: 129 feet (39.30 m)
Builder: New York Shipbuilding Co., Camden, NJ
Year of construction: 1904
Contact price: 89,030 $
Illumination: Cluster of 3 oil lens laterns raised on each mast
Station Five Fathom Bank (NJ)
3, 1967 decommissioned
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