New Jersey: A Guide to Its Present and Past

By Federal Writers' Project (N.J.) | Go to book overview

Passaic
Railroad Stations: Erie Station, Main Ave. and Jefferson St., for Erie R.R.; Van Houten and Passaic Aves. for Lackawanna R.R.
Bus Stations: 665 Main Ave. for Greyhound; 686 Main Ave. for Manhattan Transit; 707 Main Ave. for Public Service, Inter-State, Inter-City, New Jersey-New York Transit and local busses.
Local Busses: Fare 5¢.
Traffic Regulations: No turns on red light. Parking meters throughout business district at car-length intervals, 5¢ per hour.
Accommodations: Hotels, tourist homes.
Information Service: Traffic Bureau, Dept. of Public Safety, 336 Passaic St.
Motion Picture Houses: Five.
Swimming: Y.W.C.A. and Y.M.C.A.; Passaic Boys' Club, Pulaski Park ( Passaic River).

PASSAIC (70 alt., 62,959 pop.) is a hustling textile town that, in spite of perennial complaints, has not yet rid itself of the double line of railroad tracks which run for about eight blocks through the center of the city. Bounded on one side by Passaic River, 15 miles upstream from Newark Bay, the city is bordered on the other three sides by the semicircular area of residential Clifton.

The long scar of the Erie Railroad main line across the face of the city is Passaic's identification mark. Each day more than 70 trains pass through the center of town, congesting traffic, blackening the streets and buildings with their smoke. At the crossings are darkened, two-story gateman's towers, each topped by a slanting roof and a stove-pipe chimney. On the curbs are silvered wooden booths for police who operate the traffic signals.

Main Avenue is the shopping center, lined by two- to four-story buildings with offices on the upper floors, and neon signs before tightly packed shops of modern appearance on the sidewalk level. Towering above these structures is an 11-story bank building, the local skyscraper.

Main Avenue also is Passaic's residential dividing line. From the ridge on the west, the broad, twisting streets of the residential district dip suddenly into the center of the town. One-family houses predominate; some are of modern architecture, while there are many imposing wood dwellings of the Georgian Colonial type, well spaced with deep well-kept lawns.

East of Main Avenue a progressively shabbier area stretches down to the river. Here the streets are narrow, with frame dwellings and congested tenements crowded beside huge factories. This is the "Dundee Section," where one-half the population is crammed into one-sixth of the city's area. Living in this section are most of the foreign-born who comprise about one-third the total population. Numerically the Poles are first, followed in

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New Jersey: A Guide to Its Present and Past
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Sponsors' Forewords v
  • Preface vii
  • Contents xi
  • Illustrations xv
  • Maps xxi
  • General Information xxiii
  • Calendar of Events xxix
  • Part I - New Jersey: the General View 1
  • A New Jersey Silhouette 3
  • Natural Setting 7
  • Archeology and Indians 28
  • History 35
  • Government 55
  • Industry and Commerce 69
  • Labor 79
  • Agriculture 89
  • The Press 110
  • Racial and National Groups 118
  • Folklore and Folkways 126
  • Education 134
  • Religion 142
  • The Arts 151
  • Part II - Cities and Towns 187
  • Atlantic City 189
  • Bayonne 201
  • Bordentown 207
  • Burlington 216
  • Camden 225
  • Elizabeth 238
  • Freehold 250
  • Hackensack 256
  • Hoboken 262
  • Jersey City 270
  • Morristown 283
  • Mount Holly 292
  • New Brunswick 298
  • Newark 312
  • The Oranges and Maplewood 339
  • Passaic 345
  • Paterson 349
  • Perth Amboy 361
  • Princeton 370
  • Salem 390
  • Trenton 398
  • Part III - Tours 415
  • Part IV - Appendices 687
  • Bibliography 697
  • Index 705
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