Camden Street School

281 Camden Street 07103
(973) 733-6694

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From Caroline Grossmann:

The original Camden Street School was built in 1884 and stood in the middle of the block on Camden St. halfway between 16th and 15th Ave. Its footprint covered most of the area between Camden St. and Fairmount Ave. It was a three story dark red brick building with windows painted yellow or cream. On the first floor were the office, Kindergarten, "courts", a very small gym, nurse's office, and the janitor.

The second and third floors were all classrooms. There were classrooms at each end of those floors. The second and third floors each had a large central area that could be used as an auditorium when the folding walls were opened. When they were closed, each area consisted of four classrooms. There were separate entrances and playgrounds for boys and girls: boys on the north side, girls on the south.

Three generations of my family attended Camden: my grandmother entered Kindergarten there in 1895. I believe that it was around the mid 1960's when the school was torn down and replaced by the current Camden Elementary School. Camden St. originally extended all the way to Springfield Ave. By 1973 the new Camden Elementary School and even newer Camden Middle School (entrance on Bergen St.) took up the entire area bound by 16th Ave., Fairmount Ave., 15th Ave. and Bergen St. Camden St. itself became school property between 16th and 15th. and there was no longer through traffic.

The one block remainder of Camden St. between 16th and Springfield remained open until the houses there were torn down and replaced by a movie theater and its parking lot. I believe that was in the early 1980's.

From: Essex County, NJ, Illustrated 1897