2001-07-28 / Letters

Broad Channel: Then And Now

Broad Channel: Then And Now

Dear Editor:

When I was a little girl (many moons ago) and lived in Broad Channel, there were no roads, only boulevards, and a house here and there. Everything was sand, in fact, most of the time you were eating sand. We had to go to the Post Office on the boardwalk and East 9 Road to pick up our mail, and domestic mail was 2 cents.

If you needed a household item, nail for hammers, you would go to Miller’s hardware because Agustus Cobbery wasn’t there yet. We sure did have a great childhood, drill a hole in the kitchen floor to fish for Kylies on a string, only at high tide though.

The Bay had big eels and even lobsters. How wonderful those days were. A big love of clam chowder and chilidogs. Everyone in the family where fisherman and we lived on it in the depression, we considered ourselves lucky.

In the summer we would plant a few tomato seeds, they’d grow anywhere, even in the sand. Sal Lackey was our garbage man but most of the time pop would bury it in the backyard. I think my baby crib is still there.

Mr. Andariano was our coal and iceman, along with his son Frank who was his helper. There wasn’t anything that they wouldn’t do for you. Old Frank Baisile would cut your hair for 25 cents.

Time and progress happened, all the old times are gone now. Now there are great homes that line the boulevard, big boats, cars and pools are in the backyards of houses now. Everyone wants to live in Broad Channel.

I miss the old things, no more cesspools, outhouses or coal stoves. My granddad was a writer. His name was Mickey Finn.

Muriel (Berry) Stemmann

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