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Out of the past

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The Pencader Heritage Museum has been digitizing old Newark City Council meeting minutes and shares excerpts with Newark Post readers in a weekly column. The museum, at 2029 Sunset Lake Road, is open the first and third Saturdays of each month from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and every Wednesday noon to 4 p.m.

July-August 1950: Courtney Street would be curbed and guttered as far as the Clifton Knotts property, with cinder fill added to low spots further down to correct drainage. The town purchased liability insurance coverage of $50,000 for $561 per year. A special Depositors Account was formed in addition to regular bank account.

A mimeograph machine was purchased for town office. A new truck for the water department was purchased from Fader Motors. A water main on Chambers and Benny streets was to be repositioned. The town supervisor’s salary raised to $400 per month. Southern States Co-op’s request for lower assessment on its Locker Plant was refused. (Note: Before home freezers, residents could take bulk items to the locker plant for frozen storage.)

Fee for Jesse Gorman, who collected town garbage, was raised to $275/month. He was ordered to replace all can covers and close all gates. (Note: Mr. Gorman was not a town employee but collected garbage, probably to feed pigs as had been done for many years.) William Russell agreed to deed 50 feet of right-of-way on Creek Road in return for having water line laid to his property.

Dr. John Downes was appointed to council to fill unexpired term of Councilman Levis. Residents of New London Road had asked that an African-American be appointed to fill the vacancy. (Note: Dr. Downes, who was white, was a family physician on West Main Street. For many years, he was the doctor in attendance at Newark High football games. Downes Elementary on Casho Mill Road is named for him).

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