Frederick von Nieda

FREDERICK VON NIEDA was born in Bavaria in 1868. After graduating from a seminary in 1885, he intended to join the ministry. Illness changed his plans, and he emigrated to America in 1885. He worked at different jobs, including that as the first professor of German at Temple University in Philadelphia. He moved to the Cramer Hill section of Camden NJ in 1902. A civic minded individual, he began his involvement in politics shortly after moving to Camden.

One of his earliest civic involvements came through his love of boating, fishing, and hunting. He was a founding member of the Farragut Sportsmen's Association in 1907, and was instrumental in the organization of the of the Delaware River Yachtsmen's League. With Dr. C.F. Hadley and John Schimpf among others, he co-founded the East End Trust Company in 1905.

A lifetime Republican, Frederick von Nieda became Mayor of Camden in 1935, and served until 1936 when he lost a bitter political battle to Commissioner George H. Brunner. City finances at the time were troubled, and Camden in April of 1936 was paying its bills through the issuance of scrip

The defeat of Mayor Von Nieda marked the end of Republican dominance in Camden politics. He remained involved in local politics and civic affairs for most of the rest of his life.

Frederick Von Nieda's greatest accomplishment was the filling in of Baldwin's Run, a creek that ran from the area near Beideman and Westfield Avenues down to the Delaware River. In the area around River Road, Baldwin's Run became "a mosquito-filled swamp" and a "public health menace". Frederick von Nieda campaigned ceaselessly for 40 years until the swamplands were filled in and the land turned into a park. This park was named Von Nieda Park shortly after his death on February 17, 1950. Since Frederick von Nieda's passing, the Delaware River Yachtsmen's League has held an annual picnic in his name, which is attended by hundreds of boaters up and down the Delaware River.

Von Nieda Park

June 19, 2003

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3309 River Road, Camden NJ
Home of Frederick von Nieda
June 19, 2003
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Camden Courier-Post * March 1949

Stockton Annexed Against Protest Of Democrats.

Fifty years ago, the old town of Stockton was annexed to the City of Camden over the protests of Democratic members of the town council.

But a Republican Legislature approved a bill introduced by former Justice Frank T. Lloyd on March 24, 1899. He was a member of the Assembly at the time. He resided then in the structure now occupied by the Sheltering Arms Home at Eighteenth street and River avenue.

The town of Stockton had been in existence five years when the annexation took place. Merchantville and Pennsauken township were part of the original Stockton Township with the present East Camden area. Merchantville received its charter as a borough 75 years ago this month. In 1892. Pennsauken township withdrew, from the. township to become a separate municipality.

For two years East Camden remained in the township. In 1894 Alfred Cramer, founder of Cramer Hill, launched a movement to create the town of Stockton and the first governing body was elected. Edward Dudley, then a leading lawyer, was elected councilman-at-large, which entitled him to preside as mayor. William S. Abbott, a lifelong resident, became became clerk.

The town was divided into three wards. Fred Voigt and Justice Lloyd also served with Cramer and Dudley in the town council. The town hall was on the triangle, at Twenty-seventh and Federal Streets.

Albert Plum and William C. Reeves were justices of the peace. Samuel M. Jaquillard served on the Board of Freeholders as did W.O. Buck and Joseph Funfer. Charles E. Allen was a member of the Board of Education.

After the annexation Abbott was elected to Camden City Council. Others elected were Dr. William H. Kensinger, now a resident of Florida; Frederick S. von Nieda, Frederick H. Finkeldey, president of the first Playground Commission; Arthur R, Gemberling, now of Woodstown.

Other active citizens were Lemuel D. Horner, undertaker; Dr. H. F. Hadley, Jacob Bendinger, proprietor of the Rosedale Inn, and Walter L. Tushingham, former vice-president and general manager of the Courier-Post Newspapers.

Philadelphia Inquirer * August 30, 1910

Charles H. Ellis - Dr. William H. Kensinger - O. Glen Stackhouse - John S. Roberts - George A. Frey
William J. Fox - Edmund E. Read Jr. - Harry C. Dole - Charles H. Greer - David Jester - Edmund H. Way
Harry R. Read - Robert W. Gordon - Joshua C. Haines - Frank C. Van Hart - J. William Mills
Raymond Warren - C.K. Deacon -  Daniel Smith - Henry S. Gordon  - Frederick A. Finkeldey
Frederick Von Neida - Henry D. Longacre - J. Morton Pennock - John B. Irwin - Dr. Silas H. Quint
John J. Welsh - Alfred R. White - William H. Deets - Harry R. Barrett - John Miller - D.W. Poland
Frank Shaw - Edward J. Kelleher - Harry Richmond - William C. King - William Wynn
George Clark - George N. Stokes - John F. Hurley - George W. Evans
Frederick A. Finkeldey - Jonas Shaw 

Philadelphia Inquirer
January 2, 1918

T. Gordon Coulter
George Kappell
Frederick A. Finkeldey
William C. Davis
Theodore T. Kausel
Allen Jarvis -
Frank S. Van Hart
Frederick von Nieda
Joseph Forsyth
Dr. Charles P. Tuttle
Dr. H.F. Bushey
Elisha Gravenor
Charles Whaland


City Farm Gardens

Another weapon to defeat the enemy was the establishment of City Farm Gardens in the country. They were urged by the Government and not only provided food for city residents, but abolished unsightly vacant lots. Mayor Ellis named the first City Gardens Committee on April 19, 1917, as follows: E. G. C. Bleakly, Judge Frank T. Lloyd, Zed H. Copp, William Derham, L. E. Farnham, B. M. Hedrick, David Jester, O. B. Kern, M. F. Middleton, Dr. H. L. Rose, Asa L. Roberts, W. D. Sayrs, Jr., Charles A. Wolverton, Earl T. Jackson, H. R. Kuehner, Herbert N. Moffett and Hubert H. Pfeil. At the initial meeting of the above date B. M. Hedrick was elected chairman; Zed H. Copp secretary and M. F. Middleton treasurer. Brandin W. Wright, a farming expert, was employed as general superintendent on May 3, 1917. At a meeting on May 18, 1918, the names of Frank Sheridan and Daniel P. McConnell were added to the publicity committee in the place of 
Messrs. Pfeil and Jackson. 

In his annual report to City Council on January 1, 1918, Mayor Ellis urged the appointment of a committee by City Council on City Gardens and Councilman Frederick Von Neida was named as chairman. This committee with a committee of representative citizens met in the City Hall in February, 19 18, to organize for the ensuing summer. The members of the Councilmanic committee were: Frederick Von Neida, Frank S. Van Hart, William J. Kelly and John J. Robinson.

The committee planned an exposition of farm garden products for the fall of 1918, but this plan was frustrated by the Spanish influenza epidemic. 

The war gardens became victory gardens in the year 1919 when the committee met on January 29, 1919. Meyers Baker was elected secretary and William D. Sayrs, Jr., treasurer. At the meeting on March 25 committees were appointed for the Victory War Gardens 
Exposition held in Third Regiment Armory from September 15 to 20. Benjamin Abrams was elected general manager and Frank Sheridan publicity agent.

Camden Courier

February 12, 1922

Camden Courier-Post - February 10, 1933

Slash of $702,890 Is Revealed in Totals Passed at Session of Rulers

Commissioners Debate With Von Nieda as He Charges Gross Extravagance


 The Camden City Commission yesterday approved the 1933 city budget after hearing and rejecting economy recommendations of several civic and labor organizations.

Eight speakers representing five organizations urged budget reductions and protested the total of $3,353,124.60. Verbal clashes over opinions were frequent between Commissioner Harold W. Bennett, director of finance and revenue, and former Councilman Frederick von Nieda and Thomas B. Hall, representatives of the Congress of Civic Associations of New Jersey.

Nearly 300 persons attended the hearing, in marked contrast to the 5000 who marched on city hall last year to demand budget reductions. The hearing lasted three hours. The departmental budget appropriations of $3,353,124.60 with the local school appropriation of $1,250,000 and other appropriations, totaling $960,060.55 to be added in the tax ordinance yet to be adopted, will give the city a total expense of $5,563,185.15 for 1933.

Tax Bill About Same

The tax rate will not be known until the tax ordinance is adopted. After the hearing Commissioner Bennett declared that due to equalization of assessments, the bills of some taxpayers will be a few dollars higher than last year, and a few dollars lower in other cases. The commission, after approving the budget on a motion by Commissioner Bennett, adopted a resolution leasing WCAM to the Broadcast Advertising Company for $1000 per year and a percentage of all receipts over $24,000. All maintenance costs will be born by the company, of which Rudolph Preisendanz, Jr., is head.

After the budget was adopted Bennett declared the City Commission would take into consideration an allegation of Frank J. Hartmann, Jr., secretary of the Civic Congress, that the $125,400 appropriation for street  lighting was $26,450 higher than it should be according to figures obtained by him concerning the city's .lighting equipment. "If there has been an error the budget can be amended at any time," Commissioner Bennett said.

Commissioner Clay W. Reesman, under whose department street lighting comes, declared that figures in his office concerning street lighting were different from those quoted by Hartmann. The figures he used, Hartmann said, were obtained by him from City Comptroller Sidney P. McCord.

Von Nieda Case

 Von Nieda was the first citizen to address the commission. Shifting papers in his hands, he faced the commissioners and said: "We have here $40,000 for your Recorder's Court in 1932, and $25,000 for 1933."

Commissioner Bennett jumped to his feet. 

"Those 1932 figures," Bennett said, "were merely an estimate of the receipts to be taken in, but that amount did not come in. This year we anticipate only $25,000, which we consider a fair estimate."

"That's fine" said von Nieda, "but we have never had a chance to sit in with you on these figures."

"You can sit in with us at any time," responded Bennett, "We're glad to have you."

"I see here," said von Nieda, "that the transportation inspector is paid from fees, but you show no fees and the inspector should be paid by the Public Service. I also suggest that you turn Convention Hall over to the poor. Now in dealing with Station WCAM, I see you show a profit for the last three months of $1000, while in 1932, you show no records of receipts, and we are just wondering.'.

Worried by WCAM

 "Do you want that answered now?" asked Bennett. "WCAM has given myself and the other commissioners some concern during the past year. It is our duty to see that we receive as much income as possible. Different methods have been used in the radio station to make it pay during the past three months, and during this time that station has been in the black. We figure that in 1933 there will be no deficit in this station, and we look for a profit of more than $1000." 

"Now in this matter of eliminating deputy directors," von Nieda said. 

He was interrupted by Commissioner Reesman

"I'll tell you," said Reesman, "about my deputy director Carlton Harris. My deputy receives $1750 a year. He has charge of all labor in the Department of Parks and Public Property. He is on the job every morning at 7:00 AM, and often works until 10 p. m., with the labor outside."

"In speaking of the assessors," von Nieda continued, "we should have assessors who are not influenced by politicians or political dictators."

"You know I won't stand for that," answered Bennett. "The readjustment of ratables is only a small part 1 of the work we are doing. Each property is assessed on a basic principal. Any time you have a suggestion that will help us in our work we will be glad to hear from you but I firmly believe that real state must be relieved of its heavy tax burden by an income and sales tax, and this tax must come sooner or later. 

Seeking Relief

 "As far as the city commissioners are concerned, we are studying it from day to day, in efforts to get out of the wilderness.

"In speaking of the purchasing department," von Nieda continued, "we know what happened there last year. You fired your purchasing agent, and if you had not fired him it probably would have afforded the public some interesting reading about this purchasing department.

"All of my men are working overtime,' replied Bennett. "It is true the purchasing agent is out and his work is being done by an assistant (William Dilmore) at half his salary. We have got rid of as many people in these departments as we can. I had to let one girl go in the purchasing department and one girl in Controller McCord's department. One man went on pension in the tax office and two were let out in efforts to balance the budget.

"In .one of my departments where there were three girls I had, to make a $900 cut by leaving one girl out. called the three girls into my office and told them that one had to go and asked them what their home responsibilities were. One had to take care of her family, including a 77-year-old aunt; another a family with a 66-year-old aunt, and the third was supporting three or four brothers with the help of another brother, who is a barber working for practically what tips he could get.

"But I had to make a $900 cut. The girls asked me not to dismiss any of them, as they each would take a $300 cut in addition to cuts .already applied. Another man took an extra $260 cut so that he would not be out of work. But I had the budget to take care of, and I am ready to challenge any city the size of Camden to show so nearly a balanced budget. Our plan is to pay as we go."

"You cite two or three instances," protested von Nieda. "But I want to show you scores of families which have no money and they are taxpayers. You say you have cut to the bone, but you should cut through the bone. This is no grandstand play by us. Maybe we can give you some help. Then, too, the debt interest must be paid on this tragedy," he shouted, pointing to walls of the commission chamber.

"Maybe you can tell me how to get rid of the bonds," suggested Bennett. "You must remember this year we have cut $900,000 from the budget."  

Offers Recommendation

Von Nieda said the Civic Congress recommended that work now being done by two city solicitors should be done by one, that when more policemen and firemen are needed "little fellows” be restored first wherever possible; that the city incinerating plant be closed; that the personnel of the city's two' sewage disposal plants be reduced; that the city's lighting bill be cut $40,000; that inspectors of lighting be abolished and their work done by policemen and the city's engineer's department. Personally he favored an income tax, he said, to relieve the I burden on real estate. 

"1 realize,” von Nieda said, "that the city commission has done a fair job, but of the congress, with conservatively 15,000 members, think you can do even better.

Commissioner Frank B. Hanna, director of public works, interrupted von Nieda on the subject of the incinerating plant, which von Nieda declared could be abandoned because it did not burn garbage, but only rubbish. 

"Can you see me at 9:00 AM tomorrow and go through my department with me?" asked Hanna.

“Any time," replied von Nieda

Warns of Tax Strike

"However," von Nieda continued, "we are wondering what the figures in the right hand corner of the tax bill will be. Assessments may be lower and the tax rate higher, and that does not give a true picture. I fear the bills will be more for 1933 and for one am willing now to take the 1932 assessment on my home. 

"The congress vigorously opposes this personality tax. You expect to tax the homeowner for everything he has. I warn YOU gentlemen that if this tax is imposed in Camden there will be a run on banks and building and loan associations. If that happens homeowners and renters will leave this unfortunate city. There will be a tax strike here, and so help me God, I'm helping it!"

Von Nieda was followed by William Hughes of 578 Mickle street, who spoke for the Unemployed Council of New Jersey.

Hughes reiterated demands of the union for increased relief payments to unemployed, urged a municipally-owned lighting plant, operated at a profit, the same as the city's water department; a municipal lodging house; use of hand labor instead of machinery in all city contracts and the employment of labor to "tear down the slums in Camden."

Hartmann was the next speaker. He read from a prepared statement which he declared was an analysis a\of the city's 1932 lighting expenses, and which, he said, could be lowered “had we used larger lamps.“

Reesman Contradicts

After enumerating the individual costs of lamps of various candle power, and contending a change in the lamps would effect a saving this year, Hartmann charged the city has overpaid for electric energy in street lighting. 

Commissioner Reesman declared that figures used by Hartmann were in error and that therefore, his computations as to possible savings were wrong. He announced, however, he would study the situation to discover if there was any error in the budget concerning street lighting, as alleged by Hartmann.

"The Civic Congress is now circulating petitions for a referendum on a municipal lighting plant," Hartmann said. "We now have 10,000 of the required 11,000 signatures, and we do not intend to stop until we have 25,000. You commissioners can stop these petitions by adopting a resolution declaring a referendum on the question."

He then asked that the work of the city electrical inspector be taken over by the National Board of Fire Underwriters, and that "when the next tax sale is held, all properties be advertised, including banks, garages and to whomever the property belongs."

Commissioner Bennett then arose and said: "I've used' discretion on that. There are some who are paying as low as $5 per month, and I think these people should be helped. We commissioners do not want to sell the home of anyone. That is what we are trying to stop. We are in perfect agreement on that."

Debt Moratorium Asked  

"How about the Bridge Garage?" some one in the audience shouted.

"The Bridge Garage has just paid $1500," Bennett said, "and promises to pay something every month. We are trying to make the tax bills lower by getting in all the monies we can, and where possible to take in delinquent payments no matter how small. 

Clarence Moullette, secretary of the Unemployed Union of New Jersey, then arose. He asked for a moratorium on the city debt service for five years, and urged the commission to adopt such a resolution memorializing the Legislature for that relief: He announced opposition to the personality tax.

"We are not questioning the actions of the commissioners, Moullette said. “Spending less money will not help the situation. Commissioner Hanna. told me if he had $51,000 additional in his department six closed garbage trucks could purchased. This will help give work. By cutting down salaries you decrease purchasing power. Work must be had. Eventually you will pay in scrip. Why not pay in scrip now and give out work."

Hall asked that Convention Hall be abandoned and the building used for hospitalization work for the needy, and urged the city commission to "meet in the evenings so that citizens will know and see what is going on." He asked for abolition of the positions of plumbing, building, sewer and heating inspectors.

'Close High Schools'

"The commission should face conditions as they are," he said. "I speak for myself, and not the Civic Congress. I ask that the high schools be closed. I heartily approve closing of the Vocational School, but if choice was to be made between high schools and the Vocational School, I would say close the high schools. Before selling the home of anyone to meet impossible taxes, I say cut to the bone by getting rid of everything that is not absolutely necessary. 

"You commissioners must be made to realize that increased taxation is what has destroyed purchasing power in America. Meet this condition!

Commissioner Bennett challenged the statement of Hall that government costs were responsible for conditions of today.

"There are numerous causes," Bennett said.

"I would rejoice in debating it with you or anyone you select," Hall replied, "including United States senators, and convince them in 20 minutes."

"I’ll debate that with him," shouted Morris Stempa of Audubon from the audience. Stempa later addressed the commission, speaking for the Socialist party, and urged the moratorium advocated by Moullette, also a Socialist.

Eugene Wasilewski, speaking for you the South Camden Civic Association, denounced the commission for failing to call in civic association representatives in their preparation of the Budget.

Bennett Gives Reply 

"You called in the bankers, but not those others of us who also are interested in city costs," Wasilewski said. "You tell us now there is a reduction in assessments and then come along and wallop us with a higher tax rate. That is not fair. You were elected to look after our interests and that you have failed to do. You are making us eat red herring, and we want you to eat red herring with us."  

The last citizen to address the commission was Salvadore Guadelli, president of the Citizens-Taxpayers' League. He made a general indictment of conditions, ,and asked that the city commission "do not let sectionalism creep into city affairs."  

Commissioner Bennett then arose and addressed his fellow commissioners and the audience.

"All these things suggested here today have been considered," he said. "We five men came into office with the idea of serving the people. I know the business of financing the city is a. serious problem. We have endeavored to move the budget into that realm of 'pay-as-you-go! We appreciate everything presented here. Every taxpayer we look upon as an employer.

"Looking at it from every angle, this budget cannot be delayed any longer. You'll find we were severe in preparing this budget; you'll find we were severe last year. Last year we cut a half million. This year we cut $702,890.74, and to that the board of education, we hope, will add a cut of $250,000. That is a total cut of $952,890.74. Other cities in New Jersey show nothing to compare with it.  

Budget Adopted 

"I hesitate in making more cuts. I speak from experience when I say I'm a taxpayer. In the past two weeks I've been trying to raise money to pay taxes. I want all of you to know we commissioners can sympathize. It is not easy being at the head of a government in times like these. I hope that municipalities will receive federal relief in payment of debt service. There has been a tremendous cut in our budget, including the board of education figures. I feel the commissioners are to be commended for the work they've done this year.

 "If we pass the budget we won't stop at that particular point, but will see what else we can do all along the line. I feel the essential thing is to pass the budget. I'm proud of the fact we came through 1932, and are started in 1933 the same way, although I make no promise for the future. I wish for a moratorium for interest on bonds. There are the bondholders on one side and the taxpayers on the other, and the man out of work to be considered.

We are in sympathy with the man out of work. I say let the federal or government put some money into to the interest rate. We must pass this budget this afternoon. Do not delay longer. This is not an arbitrary 10 stand on my part. I make a motion the budget now be passed."

City Clerk Frank S. Albright called the roll and all five commissioners voting 'unanimously. No demonstration followed passage of the measure.  

*Eugene Wasilewski referred to in this story was Eugene Waleskiewicz, who was later known as Eugene Wales.

Camden Courier-Post - June 1, 1933

400 Friends Pay Homage To 'Good Gray Poet'

Mrs. Augusta K. Dole, New York woman, posed with etching on "The Song of the Open Road," as she sat in last chair Walt Whitman occupied at Mickle Street Home

 Men and Women From Many Sections Visit Walt Whitman's Tomb and Old Mickle Street Home on His 114th Anniversary

 “It's just a little street where old friends meet"

That's Mickle Street where Walt Whitman, the "Good Gray Poet," once lived, and old friends came back here from near and far yesterday to mingle under the portals of the house in which he wrote his famous works, on the 114th anniversary of his birth.

Among them was Mrs. Augusta K. Dole, 71, of Metuchen, whose hus­band has been a sports writer on New York newspapers for 45 years.

"They call it a dingy street and some are ashamed to return and say they lived there," Mrs. Dole said. And with a gesture of the hand she pointed out the homes of some of neighbors, who became famous.

Among, them was Button; famous artist [architect -PMC]. Another was the grandmother of J. B. Van Sciver.

"I lived at 319 Mickle Street when I was a young lady," she said. "I was one year old when we moved into the house right across the street from Whitman. I remember when he lived on Stevens Street before he moved to Mickle Street.

Knew Whitman Well

"We lived at the Mickle street address about 15 or 16 or 20 years; I knew Whitman well. He always stopped and exchanged greetings with me. I frequently, saw him on the ferryboats crossing the rivers.

"I want to take, issue right here with those, who have questioned his chastity. He was more like Christ than anyone else. I saw him admiring me as a young woman one day on a ferryboat.”

"Years later I read a description of myself in one of his works. I did not begin to read his work until 30 years ago. He wrote of the true things in life. He wrote of life as it is and as we see it. I am glad to come here today at the invitation of the committee,"

Mrs. Dole sat in the last chair in which the poet rested before his last illness. She was introduced to Dr. Alexander MacAlister, who was his personal physician in his last illness and who is a member of the Walt Whitman foundation.

Then she posed with an etching by Lewis Daniel, New York artist, at the Walt Whitman art gallery, 641 Market Street. It is one of 14 the young artist drew on "The Song of the Open Road," Two lines taken from' the book are sketched under the etching as follows:

"The earth is crude and incomprehensible at first- Nature is rude and incomprehensible at first."

400 Visit Home

More than 400 guests visited the home of the poet during the day to be welcomed by members of the foundation, Mrs. Charles A. Wolverton, wife of Congressman Wolverton, was chairman of the reception committee.

Many of the guests visited the tomb of the poet in Harleigh Cemetery where the door is ajar at his request "that his spirit may come and go as I choose.'" But no flowers were placed there as he requested none.

Born on May 31, 1819, near Huntingdon, Long Island, he had a varied career as a writer, war correspondent and poet. During the Civil War he ministered the wounded of both the North and South at Washington. He spent the last 19 years of his life in Camden, where he died in 1892. 

Under the bed in his second story front bed room today is a huge metal bathtub, which he designed for use in his invalid days. His library, horsehair furniture, his favorite rocking chair and a cane with which he knocked on the floor to call his housekeeper.

Some of his writings, manuscripts and other works are the property of Miss Ann Harned and Madge Barton Feurer. They are now, at the New Jerseyanna Exhibition at the State House at Trenton.

New Painting Viewed

A new painting of Walt Whitman has been completed by Byron T. Connor, of 4320 Manor Avenue, Merchantville, and is now on display at the Hotel Walt Whitman. The painting was completed in three weeks, so as to be ready for the birthday ceremonies.

Later it will be moved from the hotel and placed either in the Whitman home or hung in the lobby of the Walt Whitman Theatre.

Miss Harned, daughter of the late Thomas B. Harned, one of Whitman's literary executors; Joseph Praissman and Mrs. Martha Davis curator of the Whitman home, were members of the anniversary committee headed by Mrs. Wolverton.

With few exceptions, members of the Walt Whitman Foundation attended yesterday's program, including Dr. Macalister, chairman; Dr. Cornelius Weygandt, vice chairman; Mrs. Juliet Lit Stern, Joseph M. Conover, Mrs. Helen Taft Manning, Mrs. Allen Drew Cook, Mrs. Nicholas Douty, Dr. Herbert Spencer Harned, J. Frederick Harned, Roy Helton, William T. Innes, Eldridge R. Johnson, William H. Ketler, Dr. Rufus M. Jones, former Mayor Victor King, Oscar Wolf, John Frederick Lewis, Jr., Dr. Bliss Perry, Harrison S. Morris, Agnes, Repplier, former Mayor Winfield S. Price, Vernon Whitman Rich, Dr. J. Duncan Spaeth, Dr. Felix E. Schelling, Dr. Robert E. Spiller, Mrs. David Abeel Storer, Frederick von Nieda and Ralph W. Wescott.

Among the visitors was former Assemblyman William H. Iszard, who is secretary of the committee, which acquired the home as a national shrine. Iszard sponsored legislation in the Assembly for its upkeep.

Camden Courier-Post - June 6, 1933

Suit to End Relief Secrecy Planned by
Civic Congress; Irregularities Are Charged

North Camden Association Told Affidavits Are Being Taken;
Cramer and Howard Accused Of Evasion; Protest Rally Called

Court action to force the Camden County Emergency Relief Administration to reveal its books for public inspection is planned by the Congress of Civic Associations of South Jersey.

This was announced last night at a meeting of the North Camden Civic Association in the headquarters of the Pyne Poynt Social Club, 939 North Fifth street. Frank J. Hartmann, Jr., secretary of both organizations, disclosed the proposed step.

Affidavits charging irregularities in the relief administration are being gathered, Hartmann asserted.

Wayland P. Cramer, director of the county relief board and Captain Albert S. Howard, deputy director, were charged with evading public inquiries.

'Fathers Fired-Girls Hired'

"They've given us a grand run-a­round," Hartmann said in relating his efforts in behalf of a destitute family.

The Congress of Civic Associations, headed by Fred von Nieda, is determined to force inspection of the relief records by applying for a court writ, Hartmann said,

Vince Marinelli, member of the North Camden association and active in the Civic Congress, declared a number of married men were discharged from positions in the relief administration and single women engaged for their posts.

Protest Rally June 11

The association agreed to join with the Unemployed Union of New Jersey in staging a public mass meeting to protest against the relief board.

The meeting is scheduled for June 11, at the Convention Hall.

Clarence E. Moullette, executive secretary of the unemployed group, addressed last night's session, which two score persons attended.

'Only 8 In 25,600 Rejected'

Hartmann declared that of Camden's' 117,000 persons, 25,600 are receiving emergency relief. The figure in the county is comparable, he said.

Quoting Dr. Arthur L. Stone, who recently resigned as city director of emergency relief, Hartmann asserted 6828 of the 11,400 city's colored are in the relief line.

"In all these cases the great Emergency Relief Administration has found only eight this year that were not worthy of receiving aid," Hartmann said he was informed.

"The taxpayers are paying the bills and they have every right to know how the money is being spent.

"If Director Cramer and Captain Howard can be out of their office all day without anyone knowing where they are I think there is ground for investigation," he insisted.

Cites Backyard Fires

Hartmann reviewed the plight of 11 families on State Street who were forced to cook meals over a backyard fire last Saturday after gas and electric service had been suspended for non-payment of bills. Thirty-five children were affected.

Hartmann estimated that Public Service could produce electricity to supply the apartment house for one month at a cost of $2. The charge is $22, he said.

Hartmann described advantages of a municipal electric plant, for which more than 11,000 persons have signed petitions circulated by the association and civic congress. He compared this city's tax rate and assessments with those of Jacksonville, Fla., and said the southern city earn­ed $2,000,000 profit from its municipal light and power plant in 1932.

A campaign to further sentiment in favor of the municipal plant idea is being advanced daily, Hartmann reported. A staff of speakers is being enrolled.

Dr. Stone's Work Reviewed

Moullette, in appealing for support of the civic association for the mass meeting next week, said that the resignation of Dr. Stone was a political move, designed to create a position with pay for some Republican organization favorite.

"Dr. Stone spent $25,000 for emergency relief in Camden.

"As a result of the efforts of Dr. Stone in his office as municipal relief director there are children in more than 500 families who obtained milk that was not given them be­fore he took the position," Moullette said. "The purpose of the mass meeting is to bring forcibly to the attention of the authorities here and in the state that there is need for an investigation of the Camden County Emergency Relief Administration."

New Fire Alarms Protested

Joseph Munger, of East Camden, asked the association to protest against proposed expenditure of more than $50,000 for a new tire alarm system in Camden.

He charged that the project is needless, and said that transfer of the present system from the old city hall to the new courthouse annex could be made for $2500.

"The present system is sufficient for this city," Munger said. "The cost of removing it to the new building would be less than what the city might pay in interest for one year on $50,000."

Hartmann said that a new system in the fire department would require employment of additional employees and thereby add more expense to the taxpayers.

Mrs. Stephen Pfeil, William Coughlin and Miss Elsie Stein were named by Harry Walton, president, to a committee with instructions to ask Mayor Roy R. Stewart to move against alleged vandalism. They charged that young boys are destroying vacant properties throughout the city. 

Camden Courier-Post - June 6, 1933

Where Is the 'Charity' in Relief Methods -Who Founded Church of England-Reforestation and Economic Recovery

But the Greatest of These is Charity

To the Editor:

Sir-Beautiful words, well spoken.

Especially when Charity means, in a general sense, love, benevolence, goodwill, that disposition of heart which inclines men to think favorably of their fellow men, and do them good.

We read where Dr. Stone was asked to resign because his heart ruled his head. In your editorial, Mr. Editor, something seems wrong somewhere. There seems that Mr. Cramer is unaware of the meaning of charity. Dr. Stone may or may not be the man for the job. When one has a comfortable job at the taxpayers' expense one can easily dispense charity, especially if he uses somebody else's money. Dr. Stone has a comfortable job, and, perhaps, he was better suited for the job because he was sure of where the next meal was coming from but Mr. Cramer evidently was of another opinion. To him Charity is a business. Since the taxpayer and the philanthropist both practice charity, the former directly or indirectly through taxation, the latter of his own free will and accord. The latter knows where his money is going or he does not give it; the former has a right to know if he so desires, Because whether it be salaries or relief, he is the one paying the bill.

The present way the relief is being run is, perhaps, the most autocratic thing ever done in the city of Camden. The ones in charge think they are above question or reproach. But one thing is certain, and that is the citizens do not think that way about it. If these in the seats of the mighty refuse to give interviews without long waits, then the citizens should inquire from someone who will give them satisfaction. We want to know who is working for the relief, where they live, how long they have lived there, their salaries, where they came from and their qualifications. Also who is getting relief and where they live. There is little to fear for those who need relief, who are, either getting it or not getting it, it is the people who do not need it that causes those who do need it not to get it.

Imagine, if you can, 6828 people of one race out of a total of 11,400 getting relief; imagine, if you can, 25,600 people getting relief in the city of Camden alone and, perhaps more than that number in the county and only eight of these were found to get relief who did not deserve it. And then they say it is none of your business, go to the Courier and get it.  

When information is desired. Mr. Editor, we have to believe somebody. Do you have the information and are you holding out on us? Or is it a case of passing the buck? There is hardly a person in this city who knows somebody that needs relief and there are few people who don't know somebody who is betting relief and does not need it. Increasing pay of investigators, employing college girls and laying off married men, cutting allowance of those who need relief, makes undeveloped minds run around in circles. When no satisfaction is given to those who pay the bills and are told that it is none of their business, then one must feel as if there is no justice, and the very fact that of all virtues the greatest of them is charity, then the words charity and relief, such as shown and practiced in the city of Camden, should never be used in the same sentence.

President of Congress of Civic Associations

Camden Courier-Post - June 22, 1933


A total of $1400 has been received from the 2800 gardens in Camden under supervision of the Emergency Relief Administration, against a cost of $811.80, according to Frederick von Nleda, chairman of the food show committee planning for the convention of the Camden City Home Garden 
Clubs at Convention Hall September 14, 15 and 16. 

Von Nieda summarized the work ot the new gardeners at a meeting of the clubs Tuesday night in Woodrow Wilson Junior High School, presided 
over by Arthur Y. Taylor, of the relief administration. 

Representatives attended from these gardens: Cramer Hill, Taylor, Harrison, Garden City, Cox, Pyne Poynt, Princess Pat, Forest Hill, Tracy, Parkside, North East, and Clinton. Roy Adams, chief of the garden police, and Charles F. Hettinger, supervisor of gardens, were among those attending. 

Camden Courier-Post - June 29, 1933

Mothers Hysterical In Boy Vandal Trial
Pancoast Refuses Leniency to Sons, Blames Hartmann,
Who Hits Back, Charges Inconsistency and Reveals Threat

Hysterics among three mothers, one of whom fainted, as their young sons were held for court yesterday inspired another attack on Police Judge Garfield Pancoast by Frank J. Hartmann, Jr., secretary of the North Camden Civic Association.

The three women shouted frantically as their sons, each 15, were led from the court to be taken to the Juvenile Detention Home on charges of incorrigibility. They had been accused of' vandalism in North Camden. It was brought out, however, that Hartmann did not make the complaints against the boys, who will be detained until the next session of juvenile court is held by Judge Samuel. M. Shay.

Hartmann in a statement last night disclosed that a threat had been made against him by the father of one of the boys who allegedly declared he "had a gun and was going to use it."

Led from the courtroom after screaming and after one had fainted, the women cried so bitterly in the corridor that court attendants ordered them to leave.

The episode was one of the most turbulent in the history of the Camden police court, according to veteran attendants. So great was the turmoil there was question whether Pancoast would not have to recess other hearings.

Pancoast remained adamant in his decision despite the shrill protests of' the mothers; the plea of one of the boys, who begged for release with arms outstretched, and of the complainant, who urged leniency.

Criticizes Hartmann

Pancoast criticized Hartmann for "condemning him for showing leniency in such cases, yet never making formal complaint himself against youthful vandals in a specific case.

Pancoast added that he "was compelled to act as he did because of the facts in the case and general complaints against vandalism in North Camden and other parts of the city.

The boys are: Lester Jamison, of 326 North Second Street; Frank Smith, of 521 Elm Street, and Henry Egerton, 15, of 212 Bailey Street.

Complaint against the youths was made by G.T. Moore, of 313 State Street, who charged that he had found the boys destroying a property at the northeast corner of Third and State Streets.

Value $25,000, Now 25 cents

"That property once was worth about $25,000," Moore testified, "Today it could be bought for 25 cents because of vandalism."

The youths admitted they had been on the premises, but denied they had caused any damage.

The court then directed that a disorderly conduct charge against them be changed to incorrigibility, the complaint for which was signed by Moore.          

Moore testified that the defendants and other boys had been warned to keep off the property, but they would cross the street and ridicule him. He urged leniency, however, when the court revealed that the boys would be sent to the detention home. He said he did not want to see the, youths placed in confinement and their reputations blemished .

 Calls Him Liar

"I can't be lenient in his case," Pancoast replied. "I've been charged by Mr. Hartmann, of the North Camden Civic Association, with taking care of criminals and politicians who come to this court, and that is a lie. Also there has been a great deal of publicity about vandalism in North Camden, columns and columns of it, yet Hartmann has never made a single formal complaint against any boy in my court. As a citizen, if he knows such things are going on, it is his duty, as well as that of other citizens, to make a complaint to us.

"This occurrence by these boys is undoubtedly a part of the vandalism going on in North Camden and I'm going to send these boys to the detention home,"

Moore again pleaded for leniency for the boys, but Pancoast said he had no other alternative than to .sentence them under the circumstances.

The arrests on complaint of Moore were made by Gus Reihm and Wilbur Prentiss, motorcycle policemen.

Civic Clubs Protest

Apprehension of youthful vandals has been urged repeatedly by the North Camden Civic Association officers, including Hartmann, who said recently that damage by the vandals in the city has reached more than $500,000 and the city officials and police have “done little or nothing about it.

Hartmann and other officers of the association appeared before the city commission last week, urging prompt remedial measures by the city officials, and charging that too much leniency is shown in such cases. Mayor Stewart replied that the city had taken steps to eliminate the evil and was doing, all that could be done to end it.

 North Camden Civic Association officers, including Hartmann, who said recently that damage by the vandals in the city has reached more than $500,000 and the city officials and police have done little or nothing about it.             ,

Hartmann and other officers of the association appeared before the city commission last week, urging prompt remedial measures by the city officials, and charging that too much leniency is shown in such cases. Mayor Stewart replied that the city had taken steps to eliminate the evil and was doing, all that could be done to end it. The civic association’s officers protested nevertheless that this was not so, and that the police could minimize the damage if they were on the job.

Hartmann, in company with Frederick von Nieda, president of the Congress of Civic Associations, to which the North Camden association is allied, and George I. Shaw, vice president of the uptown group, conferred with Captain Arthur Colsey, at police headquarters. Captain Colsey promised further co-operation of the police in stamping out the practice of wrecking vacant dwellings and invited all citizen to report such instances to the police.

Hartmann's Reply

In replying to Pancoast's criticism Hartmann said:

"I learned from the father of one of the boys committed to jail by Judge Pancoast that the three boys could not be released unless I gave the word. This parent was quite alarmed, and I am told made threats against me. He declared that he had a gun and was going to use it. I can appreciate this man's feelings, because I understand that when he re­turned he found his wife in a terribly excited condition, an because of the fact that their son was arrested for playing tag with some chums. But I can't go to the detention home and order release of the boys. That's impossible. Only the judge can do that.

"The attitude of Judge Pancoast in criticizing me indirectly as the complainant not only is uncalled for but is the direct cause of this threat, as well as the distracted state of the boy's mother.

"Judge Pancoast is trying to throw a cloud over the real state of affairs in Camden.

"As a member of the North Camden Civic Association I have helped to point out conditions here that have existed for a long time without the police taking any notice of them, conditions which should not have been tolerated and which have caused considerable expense to property owners. 

"This needless expense could have been prevented by the police and Judge Pancoast, in a quiet, yet determined manner.

'Children Victims of Anger'

"Simply because we have criticized him and the police is not reason for Judge Pancoast to vent his anger at us upon innocent children, such as he has done in this particular case.

"He states that because we have complained it is necessary for him to hold the three young boys for court.

"On top of this he said that we never made any complaints.

"The latter is true, for we have not accused any child and do not in­tend to do so. It is the job of the police department to stop the wave of vandalism, not our task.

"Judge Pancoast's attempt to blame me in this situation is ridiculous. As I look at it he seems to be trying to evade the real issues.

'Reprimand Sufficient'

"He made a disgraceful example of three boys, to whom a reprimand would have been sufficient had they; been brought before him for merely playing tag, but if they were accused of vandalism then I think his action in committing them to the detention home was justified. But, since the charge against them was changed from vandalism to incorrigibility it. is apparent that there is some doubt in the judge's mind.

"Even with this reasonable doubt I cannot reconcile a case with the disposition of two others, immediately prior to the hearing of the three boys. I understand that two defendants on charges of stealing pipe from a vacant dwelling were dismissed.        

"The difference in these two instances, certainly does not give evidence of Judge Pancoast's sincerity in dealing with vandalism, or convince me that he is co-operating with the mayor in correcting the evils of which the Citizens and taxpayers have rightfully complained..

Camden Courier-Post - August 28, 1935

Mrs. Clyde Heidelbough - Mary Lesnikoff
South 32nd Street - Lewis Liberman - Charles Hose - Frederick von Nieda

Camden Courier-Post - August 28, 1935


Frank T. Lloyd - Frederick von Nieda - George E. Brunner - Mary Kobus  - Emma Hyland
Harry L. Maloney - Carl Kisselman - Frank J. Hartmann Jr.  

Camden Courier-Post - August 29, 1935

Harold W. Bennett - Mary Kobus - George Brunner - Frank J. Hartmann Jr. - Otto Braun
Frederick von Nieda - E.G.C. Bleakly - Diamond - W. Gentry Hodgson

Camden Courier-Post - August 29, 1935

.... continued...

.... continued...

Albert S. Woodruff - Elizabeth C. Verga - Emma Hyland - Harry L. Maloney - Hotel Walt Whitman
Firmin Michel - Carl Kisselman - Mitchell H. Cohen - Edward V. Martino - John J. Crean 
Clay W. Reesman - William D. Sayrs - Pauline Caperoon - Abe Fuhrman - Harold W. Bennett 
Mary Kobus - George E. Brunner - Frank J. Hartmann Jr. - Frank T. Lloyd - Frederick von Nieda

Camden Courier-Post - October 29, 1935

Corporation Fails to Tell About Drop in Florida Rate, Charge

"In presenting figures to influence the voters of Camden on the light plant referendum, Public Service Corporation has cooked its own goose in an electric roaster."

That was the declaration of Mayor Frederick von Nieda last night in a statement urging the voters at the November 5 election not to be deceived by "fallacious chart advertising."

"The biggest mistake in the corporation's campaign of advertising," von Nieda said, "is when they cite Jacksonville, Fla., where there is a city-owned plant in a municipality comparable in size to Camden.

"Here's what Public Service says so glibly in its advertisement: 'Residential service electric rates were substantially reduced in Camden last year and are now lower than the residential rates charged in Jacksonville, Fla.'

"Then it cites the monthly cost of electricity for the average family in Camden now, on th6 basis of a consumption of 45 kilowatt hours, at $2.80, or at the rate of 6.23 cents per kilowatt hour. In Jacksonville the basic residential rate has been 7 cents.

Big Drop in Rate

"But what Public Service failed to tell the public is that in Jacksonville the rate is established for ordinary use of lighting, but when another appliance is added in the home, say a radio, the rate automatically drops to 3 cents, more than 100 percent below the Camden rate.

"There is scarcely a home using electricity in Camden that has no electrical appliance, if it's 
only an iron or a hair curler.

"Neither has the Public Service Corporation told the public in its paid advertisements that in 
Jacksonville the city owned plant contributed in 1933 to the city treasury $1,720,000 and in 1934, despite certain supply contracts, $1,300,000.

"I have in my possession a letter from Jacksonville's utility engineer in which he states that in another three or four years the city will be tax free.

"Public Service in its fallacious charts seeks to uphold its slogan that 'Cost of Government Increases as Cost of Electricity Decreases.'

"The answer to that is easy: 'The income of government, where there is a city-owned plant, increases as the consumption of electricity increases because of lower rates.' 

3 Ways to Run Plant

"There are three ways in which public-owned plants may be run. First, for the benefit of the taxpayers only, as in Jacksonville. Second, as in Seattle, for the taxpayers and consumers by low rates. Third, as in Tacoma for low rate only.

"While I was fighting for light plant legislation in Trenton a Tacoma man visiting the state capital showed me a receipted tax bill for the previous month for $2.80 which covered the lighting of every room in his house every night because his wife in his absence couldn't bear to be alone in the darkness, covered also operation of an electrical refrigerator, air conditioner, radio, cooking and other appliances and heating of the whole house and that was in a cold month. It was amazing, but it was true.

"And yet with the lowest rate in the country, the Tacoma plant turned over to the city $854,381 in one year. Tacoma has more than 14,000 electric ranges. Our entire state of New Jersey has less than 1000. 

Huge Profits

"Electricity is the only commodity that is sold to the majority of consumers at 18 to 20 times its cost. Since its manufacturing and distribution are in at least 90 percent of our American communities controlled by private corporations, the public finds itself virtually at their mercy.

"It goes without saying that a private corporation is certainly loath to relinquish its enormous profits-hidden behind a capital set-up, huge salaries and other devices—and will go to any length of trouble and expense to eliminate a competition that might compel them to meet lower rates.

"But what of taxes? Private companies pay taxes. City-owned plants do not. Taxes are involuntary contributions for cost of city government. Taxes paid by private companies are rarely more than 10 to 12 percent of their gross receipts not their net profits. 

"All the net profits of city-owned plants go into the city treasury and become voluntary contributions to the amount to be raised for the cost of government and take the place of taxes that would have been placed on all taxpayers for just that purpose.

Benefit of Competition

"Again comes the plea of the private company, that a competitor of this type would destroy private investment. A low rate can only benefit the private company, for it will bring mass consumption and send their stock, not downward, but soaring because of increased business.

"In Montreal where the Montreal Light and Power Company is in competition with the plant of the City of Westmont just across the river, what was once upon a time a rate of 12% is now 3% but the use was made so manifold that, the stock of the private company rose from $94 to $1167."

Public Service Corporation was accused yesterday by Commissioner Frank J. Hartmann, Jr., of "flooding Camden with foreign language newspapers in which half-baked truths and distortions of fact appear."

Hartmann, chairman of the municipal light plant committee, predicted the vote in favor of the project at the November 5 election would be "at least 8 to 1 instead of 4 to 1 because of such tactics."

Hartmann announced he and other commissioners will "take the stump" in an effort to bring about an overwhelming majority in favor of the project.

"We're going to talk on street corners, over Station WCAM, through mobile sound-trucks and at meetings, Hartmann said. "We hope to stage a huge mass meeting the night before election at Convention Hall. I agree with Surrogate Hanna that an even more convincing vote in favor of the project than two years ago would be a real blow to Public Service's efforts to defeat the will of the people."

A total of 22,730 votes were cast in favor of a city-owned plant in the 1933 referendum, against 9160 negative votes.

Statement By Hartmann

Hartmann's statement follows:

"The Public Service Electric & Gas Company is stooping to unfair tactics in an effort to defeat the will of the people in declaring for a municipal light plant at the election on Nov. 5.

"I am reliably informed that the city is now being flooded with foreign language newspapers in which advertisements containing half-baked truths and distortions of fact appear.

"One of these newspapers, a weekly, has been imported from Newark. Probably, if these same advertisements should appear in an English language newspaper, they would have the effect of defeating the Public Service arguments. They would not dare to hand to persons of English speech the lies which they can pass on to those of foreign extraction in Camden city who cannot speak the English language.

"It is tactics of these kinds which will so arouse the voters that the vote will be at least eight to one as compared to the four to one vote of two years ago in favor of the light plant.

"As has been said many times before, the people of the City of Camden are being taxed twice, once by the city and once by the utility company in the form of exorbitant rates.

"If has been said that Camden has low electric rates. Such statements are not true. Camden rates, according to Congressional investigation, are the fourth highest in the country and by Camden's rates we mean the rates of any city or any customer in the Public Service system.

"It has been recently proven that the City of Camden can buy power cheaper retail than it can wholesale. The advertising manager of the public Service Company says 'if we would use more of it we can get it for less money, a humorous statement when you consider if you read such statements regarding the various costs in different parts of the city in the water department, the same electricity costs as high as I cents in one place and perhaps 6/10 of a cent somewhere else, but no matter where it is consumed the same basic cost still exists and I am convinced that the Public Service can manufacture electricity as cheap as anyone else, especially those that they claim in poorly operated municipal plants who can manufacture current for 4/10 of a cent per kilowatt hour.

"No thinking voter will be fooled by either the statements or the number of advertisements appearing in the paper. For, after all, money is no object in this battle as far as the people's rights are concerned.

"At the present time the City of Camden is very poorly lighted because we can afford only $126,000 for street lighting. If Camden had its own municipal power plant "we "would get much more light for far less money. Likewise in the water department w* would not be charging 17 cents to ourselves for one kilowatt of electricity, on the face of the earth controlled by monopoly that sells from two to twenty times the cost of its production.

"The present City Commission, of which I am a member, takes cognizance of the fact that one of the reasons we are in office at the present time is because we have pledged our support for a municipal power plant.

"We are now planning a short and intensive campaign which will consist of holding meetings in the various civic and social clubs throughout Camden, speaking to the entire city from loud-speaking wagons, and we intend planning a mass meeting to climax our effort, and we sincerely hope that the voting this time is at least twice as decisive as it was two years ago.

"Because of the fact that Camden did not own its municipal power plant we fund ourselves struggling along in the same way and manner that we have for the last six years.

"Incidentally, every commissioner will speak at very frequent intervals over Camden's municipal station, privately owned.

"The commissioners, in endeavoring to reach the people, of course, will utilize the press and right here may we say that Camden's newspaper, the Courier-Post, deserves credit for suggesting that the 
question be placed on the ballot without petition. The citizens and the commissioners offer to these newspapers sincere thanks and sincerely hope that they will continue in the future as they have in the past, in telling the citizens of Camden what is best for them.

"We urge that every citizen go to the pools and vote yes for a municipal light plant. This is your salvation. The relief from the tax burden and the beginning of a new day. The people must be served."

Camden Courier-Post - October 29, 1935

Hartmann's Plan to Shift Assessor's Office Hit by Mayor
Commissioner Accused Playing Politics on Eve of Election

Mayor Frederick von Nieda, in a statement issued yesterday afternoon, severely censured 
Commissioner Frank J. Hartmann, Jr., New Dealer, for his attempt to transfer the assessor's office from the city revenue and finance department to Hartmann's control.

In reply to Hartmann's statement that the mayor and Commissioner Harold W. Bennett, Republican minority members of the Camden City Commission, are "cry babies," von Nieda charged Hartmann with "playing politics" on the eve of the general election here November 5.

Von Nieda declared Bennett's business training as a lawyer qualified him far better to direct the operation of the assessor's office in comparison to a "great merchant who has had several years business training in selling electric light bulbs." 

Question of Reductions

In answer to Hartmann's charges that politically favored property owners received reduced 
assessments under the previous administration, von Nieda reminded the New Deal commissioner that such reductions were made by a Democratic controlled Camden County Board of Taxation.

Von Nieda further charged Hartmann with "having his eye on the $20,000 payroll in the assessor's office." The mayor also declared the New Dealer commissioners were prohibiting Republican workers in the municipal government from participating in politics but did not restrict the Democratic employees.

The latest attack of von Nieda on Hartmann further widens the breach between the two commissioners who once fought side by side for civic improvements and lower taxes. It was von Nieda and Hartmann who were largely instrumental in formation of the New Jersey Congress of Civic Associations. In fighting for civic betterment here, the two men on many occasions spoke from the same platform. The split came prior to the election of von Nieda to the City Commission.

The mayor's statement follows:

"At every commission meeting, and in the public press, I am hearing Mr. Hartmann throwing so many bouquets at himself that I am beginning to think he is the only honest man in Camden and the greatest city commissioner any city ever had. 

"I am sure that the taxpayers may expect next year the lowest tax rate in 20 years if we can believe all he says about the savings he has already effected, such as $50 on drinking cups, and so much money on electric juice at Delair. From this one item alone, Public Service stockholders may expect a big cut in their dividends next year.

"And the great reforms in Public Service he has accomplished, according to his own say so!

"Now he modestly proposes to transfer the tax assessment department from Mr. Bennett's hands to his own—he can manage it so much better, you know.

"Why not? What does a lawyer of Mr. Bennett's experience know about real estate values as 
compared to a great merchant who has had several years -business training in selling electric light bulbs?

"The voters or Camden at last Spring's election were mistaken when they gave Mr. Bennett a larger vote of confidence than they did any other city commission candidate — even more than the wonderful Mr. Hartmann.

"But he is not playing politics— only he has his eye—so he says—on that $20,000 payroll in the assessor's department and he will probably say he wants to take charge to reduce the payroll. Well, Democrats have become quite expert in reducing payrolls—even of worthy Democrats—but not of the payrolls of Democratic office holders. And the tax assessments must be changed by Nov. 1. Why did he not say before Nov. 5? Aye, there's the magic date.

"His explanation that Nov. 1 is tax appeal date shows some little ignorance on his part. The city board does not handle appeals, and the county board began that job on Aug. 15. The city board on Oct. 1 fixes the assessment values for 1936. I am glad that Commissioner Hartmann corrected that statement later.

"Little errors like that do not bother such a great expert as Mr. Hartmann.

"He also said—as I recall it—that some of the big taxpayers had secured reductions—he could not mean this year because the county board has not yet reported its findings—so of course he meant last year's reductions.

"But did hot Mr. Hartmann forget that last year the county tax appeal board was Democratic?

Not Finding Fault

"I am not finding fault with what the board then did—maybe they were right—but |Mr. Hartmann has seen fit to criticize their actions and yet politically he sleeps in the same bed now with them. Really, he should know also that the city board makes the original assessments, and appeals for reductions are appeals against the values fixed by them.

"Evidently, Mr. Hartmann proposes to make the city board a board of appeals over its own valuations.

"But to get back to the political aspect, because after all I am convinced that politics is the real motive for this gentleman's peculiar anxiety at this critical time for changing the assessment department over to the department of ash collections and street cleaners.

"You see there is quite a similarity between real estate values and ashes and street dirt, which after all are real estate in the making.

"But there is no politics in it, says Commissioner Hartmann. But we will have to judge the gentleman not by what he says but rather by what he does. No politics either, I suppose, in that just before November 5, the new liquor excise board was-created.

"Mr. Hartmann, of course, did not have in mind the possibility of some one quietly slipping the word to all liquor license holders to be good on election day.

"Is it not strange also that only this past week more than a dozen Republican office holders were fired and similar number of New Dealer Democrats hired in their stead? 

"No Politics?'

"And this just a. few days before election?

"Mr. Hartmann is fond of citing the alleged shortcomings of the former commissioners (of which I was not one), and yet he voted for Clay Reesman to be city clerk, who was a city commissioner for eight years from 1928 to 1935.

"So why does he prate so much about the mistakes of Mr. Reesman and his colleagues?

"No politics in Mr. Hartmann's department! What a laugh?

"Only recently he sent out notices warning city employees not to engage in political activity. But that only applies to Republicans, because Mr. Hartmann has recently helped appoint several Democrats and New Deal Ward leaders to public office.

"Some of them have been politically active this past week and that not even outside the sacred precincts of the City Hall, and during office hours at that.

"Let any Republican officeholder be likewise guilty arid off will go his head.

"No, indeed, Republicans, even after office hours must not even attend political rallies.

"Who made him the Dictator over the party principles or party loyalty, even of office holders after office hours? Since when did he become bigger than the legislature itself?

"But Mr. Hartmann is going to have stool pigeons at the Republicans rally next Saturday, at least that threat has been whispered around the City Hall this past week. 

City Hall on Nov. 5

"New Deal City Commissioners themselves can play politics right in the City Hall itself every day and their appointees can and do attend Democratic nightly gatherings and they can and do engage in all sorts of political activities.

"I wonder if Mr. Hartmann will have stool pigeons in the three downtown wards on election day to watch his New Deal Democrats recently appointed in order to see if they are then politically active. Will he see to it that these New Deal leaders remain on duty at the City Hall on election day?

"It will be Quite interesting for inquisitive voters to visit the City Hall on that day so that they may take note of the many Republican officeholders whose compelled presence there will be so necessary for the protection of the otherwise empty City Hall corridors. The sauce for the Democratic goose ought to be the same for the Republican gander.

"And this is supposed to be a non-partisan majority, now in control of the City Hall.

"I am wondering if Mr. Hartmann thinks the voters of Camden have forgotten the pre-election pledges of this same majority?

"And does he think the people of Camden are being fooled by his boastful cry of 'No politics—no politics'?"

Hartmann Answers

Hartmann answered von Nieda's attack last night with this statement:

"It was very kind of Mayor von Nieda to advertise my business. I will admit I have somewhat neglected my private business for some time in order to devote all of my time to city affairs.

"The only thing the mayor forgot to say was that I sell the lamp bulbs to which he referred, at Eighth and State streets.

"I hope he will remedy this oversight in his next public utterance concerning me".

Camden Courier-Post - October 29, 1935

Community Center Sought for East Camden
Construction Costs of Project Would Be Separate of Homes

A community house, with an auditorium and swimming pool, as an adjunct to the $3,000,000 P.W.A, housing project for East Camden is being sought by the City Federal Housing Committee.

The plan, as outlined by the committee yesterday, is to attempt to have the community house and pool built in connection with a school which the federal authorities have indicated a willingness to finance and separate from the housing project.

The community house, the committee announced, will be sought as a convenience not only to 
occupants of the low-cost housing project, but also for the benefit of dwellers in the adjacent territory.

James W. Burnison, chairman of the committee, which was appointed by Mayor von Nieda, said the entire committee feels construction of the community house and pool as part of the P.W.A. project would run the rental cost per room too high for those whom it is intended to aid— present dwellers in sub-standard homes, with incomes of $60 to $125 a month.

U. S. to Bear Costs

The plan, Burnison said, contemplates that the Federal Government would bear practically all of the cost of construction of both the school and the community house.

The commission and the board of education will be consulted on "the feasibility and desirability" of the community house construction, Burnison announced.

The entire committee concurred orally in Burnison's outline of this and other matters discussed at its first meeting.

Other members of the committee are A. J. Rosenfeld, secretary; Charles F. Hollopeter, Joseph Mitton and James V. Moran.

Burnison is vice president of RCA Manufacturing Company and president of the Camden County 
Chamber of Commerce. Rosenfeld is a real estate man. Hollopeter is chairman of the Camden Labor 
Housing Committee, Inc., which was instrumental in bringing the housing project to Camden, and also
is president of the Central Labor Union. Mitton is vice president of the Camden Labor Housing Committee, Inc., and represents industrial unions. 

Appointed as Individuals

It was emphasized by Burnison that each member, however, was appointed as an individual and that his actions are not binding on the organizations with which he is connected.

"The big problems facing the committee," Burnison said, "are to see that the project does not burden the city and add to the tax rate, and to see that, in any event, the project will recompense the city for all governmental services accruing to it.

The committee also went on record as insisting that all labor and materials for the housing project 
"be procured locally."

The committee will report to the city commission.

Camden Courier-Post - October 29, 1935

On All Fronts


Third Ward—Third Ward Republican Club, 432 South Third street.
Fifth Ward—First Italian Republican League, 813 South Fourth street.
Sixth Ward — 506 Chestnut street.
Twelfth Ward — 300 North Twenty-seventh street.
Fourteenth Ward—2523 Morgan boulevard.
Third Ward — Gloucester, Broadway and Powell street.
Lindenwold—Garden Lake Republican Club.
Runnemede — Legion Hall, Clements Bridge road
Winslow Township — North Tansboro School House.

Mrs. Frederick von Nieda, wife of the mayor, will conduct one of nearly 100 parlor meetings to be held simultaneously throughout the county tomorrow afternoon between 3 and 4 o'clock, women will gather in each voting district to hear radio appeals from Station WCAM in behalf of the Republican candidates.

Mrs. von Nieda's parlor meeting will be at her home, 3309 River avenue, and is open to all women residents of the Eleventh ward. She is expecting 200 guests.

An elaborate program has been arranged for tomorrow afternoon's radio hour, including musical entertainment and oratory.

On the program will be Congressman Charles A. Wolverton and Mrs. Florence Baker, members of the Republican state committee; former United States Senator David Baird, Jr., and the candidates: Albert E. Burling for state senator; Edwin G. Scovel, J. Claud Simon and Henry M. Evans for assembly; Mayor Joseph H. Van Meter for sheriff; Dr. Leslie H. Ewing for county clerk, and Joshua C. Haines for register of deeds.

Musical interludes between the oratory will be furnished by WCAM String Ensemble and guest soloists.

In addition to the broadcast on Wednesday, there will be radio programs this afternoon at 3.30; Thursday afternoon at 3.20; Friday afternoon at 3.30; Monday afternoon at 3.30 and Tuesday afternoon (Election Day) at 3.30.

Camden Courier-Post - October 29, 1935


Importance of neighborhood business was stressed last night at an open air meeting sponsored by the Cramer Hill Businessmen's association, at Veterans Park, Twenty-sixth street and Hayes avenue. Businessmen of the section were praised in brief talks by Mayor Frederick von Nieda, Mayor Joseph H. Van Meter, Collingswood, and Joshua C. Haines, recorder of deeds.

Prizes were awarded to Mrs. Newton Ash, 840 North Thirtieth street, electric refrigerator; Walter Conine, 1809 River avenue, radio, and George Blanck, 1026 North Twenty-first street, vacuum cleaner.

Officers of the association are Frederick Wolf, president; Charles Till, vice president; Richard Liebert, secretary and George Stiefel, treasurer. Trustees are: Edward Wenner, Joseph Till and Sylvester Onesty.


Camden Courier-Post - October 29, 1935

C. of C. Delays Ruling On $3,000,000 Project

The board of directors of the Camden County Chamber of Commerce at a meeting yesterday afternoon withheld approval or disapproval of the $3,000,000 East Camden housing project.

Loyal D. Odhner, executive secretary of the chamber, stated after the meeting the subject had been thoroughly discussed, but that it was decided not to place the board on record until recommendations of the Camden Housing Committee appointed by Mayor Frederick von Nieda are available. This committee organized yesterday.

The board adopted a resolution urging that the New Jersey Sales Tax Repeal Association, following its successful campaign which resulted in appeal, continue in existence to enforce governmental economies in lieu of additional taxes.

It also approved application to the W.P.A. for a grant of federal funds to erect a seaplane landing on the Delaware river at Camden. The cost was estimated at $2000.

Action also was deferred on the social security problem which was discussed by the employers group of the chamber last Friday, when Charles W. Denby, Philadelphia attorney and authority on such legislation, addressed the group.

The board discussed park-o-meter idea as a possible solution of the traffic problem here. It is in successful operation in Oklahoma City, Odner said. Under the park-o-meter system a motorist parks, puts a nickel in a meter nearby and leaves his car for a specified period.

Camden Courier-Post - October 29, 1935

Fleet Adequate to Defend U. S. And Maintain Peace Urged by Wolverton in Navy Day Speech 
Congressman Praises Theodore Roosevelt for Interest in Nation's Marine Forces; Parade And Dinner Conclude Celebration in Camden

Congressman Charles A. Wolverton, in an address yesterday commemorating Navy Day, urged the United States to 'maintain a navy of sufficient strength and effectiveness for the adequate defense of the nation.

The address featured a program sponsored by the officers and enlisted men of the Second Battalion, U. S. Naval Reserves, for the observance of the 160th anniversary of the establishment of the U. S. Navy.

The program was concluded last night with a parade of the battalion, followed by a dinner and entertainment at its headquarters, 715 Pine street. More than 200 took part in the ceremonies.

In his address, broadcast over WCAM, Congressman Wolverton praised the efforts of former President Theodore Roosevelt to develop the sea forces of the nation and said it was "particularly appropriate" that October 27, the anniversary of his birth, should be set aside for the observance of Navy Day. Due to the day falling on Sunday this year, programs commemorating it were held throughout the nation yesterday.

"As the American Navy in the past has never been other than an instrument in the hands of the people to foster and maintain peace," Congressman Wolverton said, "so with confidence I have faith in its future usefulness because I continue to have faith in the peaceful purposes of America.

"The primary purpose of the Navy is to maintain peace. It never declares war, and when war is declared the power of the Navy is used to re-establish peace at the earliest possible moment.

"Time and again the strength of our Navy has prevented war. It never provoked war. To give the Navy additional strength will make more certain our own peace and the peace of the world.

Hit Propaganda

"Notwithstanding the peaceful aims and ambitions of our nation throughout the entire period of its existence, there are those in our midst many of whom are misguided by untrue and unpatriotic propaganda to which an adequate navy would be interpreted throughout the world as an intention upon the part of the United States to enter upon an aggressive policy, and that there could be no other result except to provoke a spirit of war.

"Is it possible that any one within the boundaries of this country, and especially those who claim citizenship herein, could be so unappreciative of the true spirit of America as to believe that any such warlike spirit dominates their fellow countrymen when their representatives in Congress merely seek to provide for our national security?

"Although America is a peace loving nation, yet, there is a distinct obligation to ourselves and to the peace of the world, that we shall maintain, within treaty limits, a navy sufficiently strong and effective as will deter any other less peacefully inclined nation, from disturbing either our own peace or that of the world.

"The United States Navy is the most potent and influential factor in promoting and maintaining peace and insuring its blessings to ourselves and those of the weaker nations of the earth, who look to us for protection and security."

Mayor Frederick von Nieda and Commander O. M. Read, U. S. N., officer in charge of the Fourth District Naval Reserves, were the guests of honor and principal speakers at the banquet.

Lieut.-Commander George W. Keefe, U. S. N. Reserve, commanding officer of the battalion, acted as toastmaster.

Mayor von Nieda expressed pleasure at the development of the Camden battalion and the success of efforts in the last legislature to obtain an appropriation for the erection of a new armory for the battalion on the Cooper river near Admiral Wilson Boulevard.

Battalion Praised

Commander Read praised the officers and men of the battalion for the efficiency of their organization and predicted with the increased facilities the new armory would afford, that the battalion would rank with the best of the naval militia.

A program of entertainment, lasting more than an hour, was presented by entertainers from the studios of Camden and Philadelphia radio broadcasting stations.

The United States Navy has led the way in aviation research, Gov. George H. Earle said in an address before several thousand persons attending a Navy Day program in Philadelphia.
The governor, who commanded a submarine chaser during the World War, pointed out that the functions of the navy were many and varied.

"Navy Day," he asserted, "is set apart each year to bring to the attention of the people of the United States the function of our navy in the maintenance of national defense As citizens it is our duty to know something about the navy, so that we may know why we need a navy and why it must be maintained in efficient condition.

"Experimental work performed by the navy, led to the development of metal aircraft construction, and now metal construction is the recognized standard."

Governor Earle said that "not only has the navy blazed the trail across the Atlantic, but it also sent a squadron of patrol planes from San Francisco to Hawaii."

Four members of the Camden City Commission attended the launching of the destroyers Cassin and Shaw at the League Island Navy Yard. They are Mayor von Nieda, Commissioners Mary W. Kobus, George E. Brunner and Frank J. Hartmann Jr.

Immediately after the launching the keel of the new cruiser, U. S. S Wichita, was laid on the No. 2 ship-ways. The keels of the Cassin and Shaw were laid in October, 1934. The Wichita is the eighteenth of the "flyweight" cruisers built by the United States under the provisions ot the London naval treaty of 1930.

Henry Latrobe Roosevelt, assistant secretary of the navy, was the principal speaker of the launching of the two destroyers.

Camden Courier-Post - December 5, 1935

Frederick von Nieda, George Spicks


Hartmann Names Dr. Baker Public Works Staff Physician
Civil Service Commission Asked to Approve $1500 Job

The State Civil Service Commission has been requested to authorize appointment of a staff physician for the Camden City department of public works at an annual salary of $1500, and Dr. Maurice E. Baker has been named to the post on an ad interim appointment by Commissioner Frank J. Hartmann, Jr.

Dr. Baker, a Democrat, was a candidate for city commissioner last May on the New Deal-Non Partisan ticket, which elected Hartmann and Commissioners Mary W. Kobus and George E. Brunner.

Hartmann said last night that Dr. Baker has been acting as staff physician for the past four days and has made 12 examinations.

Some of these, Hartmann said, were for city employees with frost­bitten toes, fingers and ears, who are claiming compensation, and one was I of a woman who slipped and fell on a sidewalk.

"Dr. Baker, of course, is not getting paid a salary now," Hartmann said, "but we hope he can be placed on a salary as a money-saving movement.

"Heretofore the physicians examining city workmen on compensation claims have charged the city $10 for each examination.

"I expect Dr. Baker to make 600 to 700 calls a year, most of them examinations, and thus get the work, done for $2 in each case.

"I expect also to save money on compensation claims by having Dr. Baker make examinations of any new men hired, so that we may be sure they are in good physical condition. As it is a man could receive an injury somewhere else, go to work for the city and then claim compensation for the injury by pretending it happened on the city job.

"Dr. Baker's examinations of the present employees will lead to compensation claim savings also, as we will be in position to make some of these men take steps to protect themselves and the city, where remedial action seems necessary."

Hartmann said all members of the city commission except Mayor Frederick von Nieda have endorsed the employment of a staff physician. "I haven't had a chance to talk to the mayor about it yet," Hartmann said. City Solicitor E. G. C. Bleakly also has approved the move as offering a chance to save money, Hartmann said. 


Measure to Limit Size and Fix Fees Protested at Noisy Hearing

The ordinance approved on first reading January 29 amending the present law regulating the distribution of circulars was voted down by the· city commission on second reading yesterday, after a public hearing.

Public hearings scheduled on five other ordinances were postponed. These included three refunding measures, one amending present laws designed to stop littering the streets, and the other extending the closing time for barber shops.

Opposition to the circular ordi­nance, which would have restricted the size of such advertising matter to 6 by 4 inches and required a permit and tax fur distribution, was voiced by merchants and representatives of the Socialist and Communist parties.

The hearing was a noisy one, with sporadic outbursts from the audience causing Mayor Frederick von Nieda to rap for order frequently.

Grocers Protest

A. David Epstein, attorney representing the South Jersey Grocers Association, with a membership of 200 independent grocers, was vigorous in his opposition to the amendment. He argued that circulars provide the only means for members to advertise their wares and said the proposed size hardly meets their requirements. Present circulars are 12-1/2 by 19 inches in size, and have been used over a period of years, Epstein said. The lawyer also objected to levying a tax, pointing out that each distributor is forced to take out a $6 license now.

Commissioner Harold W. Bennett said many justifiable complaints had been received declaring porches, steps and yards were littered with circulars and other advertising matter. He said such papers should be attached securely to doors or handed in.

Commissioner Mary W. Kobus said she saw no need for the proposed amendment, declaring the existing law requires distributors to place circulars on a doorknob with a rubber band.          

Irving Levinsky, Broadway merchant, said he would favor the ordinance if the size was increased to 12 by 22 inches.

Theatre Manager Speaks

A chorus of boos caused Mayor von Nieda to demand order. Levinsky said he agreed that "newspaper circulars," or thick, bulky ones, should be outlawed.

This drew an objection from Joseph Murdock, local theatre manager, who defended multiple page circulars issued by him, in advertising motion pictures.

Commissioner Frank J. Hartmann, original sponsor of the ordinance, then moved that it be tabled.

Charles S. Danenhower, Camden and South Jersey organizer for the Communist party, objected that the measure should be killed outright "in the interest of the working classes."

Hartmann called for action on the ordinance, and it was voted down by unanimous vote.

When the refunding ordinances were laid over for the third time, Bennett said quickly action was necessary, and asked that the mayor be authorized to call a meeting before the next regularly scheduled session, to handle the matter. 


Asserts U.S. Should Make
100% Grant for Housing Project Building

Objection to the city burdening itself with any more school expenses, was voiced yesterday by Mayor Frederick von Nieda at a meeting of the Mayor's Housing Committee.

The mayor's viewpoint was made clear to members of the committee who met in his office to map out a plan to be submitted to Washington which would make possible a 100 percent grant by the government for the proposed school to be erected at the .$3,000,000 "Westfield Acres" housing project.

The mayor declared his objection to any additional school burden after it was brought out that the office of W.P.A. Administrator Harold L. Ickes had notified the committee the city's proposal for a 30-room school has been held up because there are no available government funds.

"I am opposed to any additional school expense on the city because of this project," Mayor von Nieda said. "If the housing project is to come here, the government must meet its share.

"We want another school and not a shack. There is already a temporary school on Thirty-second street between Hayes and River avenues, and we don't want any more of that. I am against any more spending so far as the city is concerned. The board of education has all it can stand. There will be no more spending, only over my dead body."

Following the mayor's statement, James W. Burnison, chairman of the committee, named a subcommittee to confer with the board of education and other local educational officials in an effort to map out some plan acceptable to Washington. The sub­committee consists of A. J. Rosenfeld, Charles F. Hollopeter and Joseph N. Hettel.

Mayor von Nieda told the group that a 30-room school would cost at least $250,000, and that approximately 400 families would be housed at the development, with at least one child to every family.

Burnison urged passage of federal legislation which would give the city definite assurance that it would be paid all service charges, such as sewer and water, in lieu of taxes.

A dedication committee was named to arrange for exercises at such time as the project gets under way. The committee includes George V. Walsh, project manager, Hollopeter and Burnison. Other members of the housing committee are James V. Moran, Joseph Mitton and Rosenfeld.

A covered rack in which bicycles can be parked from either side is a German invention.

Camden Courier-Post - February 21, 1936

Says New Dealers Must 'Call Bennett's Bluff'

To the Editor: 

Sir-At least, we are getting somewhere. Harold Bennett made the remark recently that the New Deal Commissioners haven't got the "guts" to remove him. I say, let them call his bluff.

If you will recall, I wrote to the Mail Bag- under date of November 29, 1935, and suggested this particular move. The same transfer that Baird had performed on Hanna. Mr. Bennett as far as I know is a perfect gentleman outside of political circles, but when he capitulates to Dave Baird, when its time to oust him. And this statement also holds good for Fred von Nieda, one-time Socialist and so-called independent. It’s rumored that Baird promised Bennett a judgeship. 'What did he promise poor Fred?

I have been a life-long Republican but rather than continue under Baird's leadership, I would prefer casting my future with the present New Deal Commissioners. And if the courts should not uphold the New Dealers in their efforts to remove those in "key-positions" I say, "prefer charges" and get rid of them. How else can we hold the New Dealers liable? Are they receiving 100 percent co-operation from their subordinates? The latter were placed there by Baird. To whom are they obligated? Baird or to the taxpayers?



Camden Courier-Post * February 26, 1936

Applicants With Programs to Be Considered by Board Today
Chapter 60 and 77 Author Overruled in Plea to Disregard Proposal

Camden's city commissioners yesterday agreed to select a paid financial adviser to guide the city out of its financial morass.

. They said they expect to make the selection today.

A special gathering of the commis­sioners in Mayor Frederick von Nieda's offices at noon today was arranged to hear applications of candidates for the job.

No candidate will be considered un­less he has a plan to submit that looks attractive to the commissioners they said.

Decision to select the paid adviser came near the end of a hectic two and one-half hour conference of the commissioners with their citizens' advisory committee, members of the Freeholders budget committee, various bond brokers, and bankers and attorneys for the city and the bond dealers.

Proposed by Mrs. Kobus

The commissioners decided to en­gage the adviser against the recommendation and despite an eloquent plea of their bond attorney-L. Arnold Frye, of Hawkins, Delafield and Longfellow, New York attorneys.

It was at the suggestion of Commissioner Mary W. Kobus that the decision to bring in paid help was taken.

The action was taken under such a. way as to leave at least one bond house's representatives under the impression the commission is actually, though not legally, committed to accepting whatever plan their paid counselor may suggest.

His questions on this line, however, brought no definite answer.

"Oh. we'll agree," Mrs. Kobus said. "I think by the time we select the man we will select the plan," Commissioner Harold W. Bennett, director of revenue and finance, said.

Beyond that, the commissioners did not commit themselves.

Bennett, however, announced that the adviser's tenure will be "for whatever period we decide to engage him."

Names Confidential

Commissioner George E. Brunner suggested that the advisory committee submit the names of three prospects for the adviser's job and that committee's sub-committee on finance withdrew and returned to offer two names. They explained they could not suggest more than two.

The names were held confidential and no one knowing them would reveal their identity ..

There was some speculation as to whether they were Melbourne F. Middleton, Jr., Philadelphia bond broker and former city director of revenue and finance, and Norman S. Tabor, noted New York adviser on municipal fiscal affairs.

Fall to Make Pick

The commissioners, as soon as they received the two names in secret, withdrew into the mayor's private office for ten minutes to discuss the suggested helpers, but returned to announce that all applicants for the job will be heard at noon today.

This was accepted as tacit admission that no final agreement was reached on either name suggested.

Bennett announced:

"We are going to pick the man on a basis of his helpfulness to Camden, I want to say now 'that we will not necessarily select the man who offers to help us at the lowest cost.

"We want those applicants for the position who appear tomorrow to have a definite idea of what plan they expect the city to follow if they are engaged.

"Of course, we do not expect any minute detailed plan from any man not already acquainted with the situation, but we want it to be definite enough to enable us to know whether we will follow it.

"We want to keep the cost as low as possible, and we advise now that the cost of this help or advice must be low, but we will not pick the adviser on a cost basis purely.

'No Private Talks'

"We will make no commitments in advance. We will talk to no applicant until the time comes tomorrow. My conception of how we will select the adviser is this:

"Ability will come first. Then contacts, experience, the cost to the city and, of course, the acceptability of the plan offered."

The conference was called to discuss proposed refunding plans for Camden city, with most of the talk centering on the controversy over Chapter 60 as a refinancing basis.

Mrs. Kobus suggested appointment of the financial adviser at a meeting of the city commission to be held immediately.

"I have thought similarly during the last few days," said Bennett. "I realize it would be a big expense, but the City is reaching a crisis and it might be money well spent."

Brunner asked the advisory committee to submit three names for appointment as an adviser. The committee suggested two names which were not revealed.

Frye, in requesting the commission not to employ an adviser, revealed himself the principal author of New Jersey's two refunding or bond issuing acts around which the commissions' difference of opinion as to method has revolved-Chapters 60 and 77.

"You can finance your indebtedness entire, Frye said, "under Chapter 77, or partly under Chapter 60 and partly under 77. I personally have no preference, as the principal author of both.

Frye Plan Refused

"As to your tax rate, set what you can set and what the taxpayers can stand. Don't you think you could get together and settled this among yourselves? Don't you think that        would be better?"             

Bennett passed off Fry's suggestion thus:

"No, Mr. Frye, I think it can best be settled by use of an adviser. I am anxious to settle it quickly. We have been unable to agree thus far and I am on the uneasy seat for Camden faces a crisis and I want to get it past."

Frye's suggestion carne after all of the bond brokers present, except Middleton, had advised the city to use the stringent budget, making restrictions of Chapter 60.

James W. Burnison, chairman of the citizens' advisory committee, reiterated that group's objections to Chapter 50, saying the same guarantees can be provided for bondholders under 77, without putting the city under such rigid state supervision for so long a period.

Every person present was invited to speak. Most of the freeholders viewed the matter as a city and not a county problem, but promised cooperation.

Burnison, Carl R. Evered, A. Lincoln Michener and James V. Moran form the sub-committee which selected the two names submitted to the commissioners for consideration as fiscal adviser.

The meeting started as a closed session, but after 25 minutes behind closed doors in the mayor's' office, Evered came to the door and admitted reporters.

The reporters, however, were given to understand that the only statements they were to use were those from Burnison, chairman of the committee; James V. Moran, a member, or Evered, and from other speakers only with their permission.

Attending were the five city commissioners, William H. Heiser, chairman of the Board of Freeholders' budget committee; Freeholders James S. Caskey, Maurice Bart, William Myers, and James W. Wood; George D. Rothermel, assistant county solicitor; City Comptroller Sidney P. McCord; Meyer Sakin and John R. Di Mona, assistant city solicitors; Burnison, Evered, Moran, and Michener, of the Citizens' Advisory Committee; E. Howard Broome, deputy director of finance; Middleton, John T. Trimble, counsel for Middleton; three representatives of Hawkins, Delafield & Longfellow, New York including Frye, Henry Russell and Alfred Gregory; Walter Shuman, representing Rollins & Sons, of Philadelphia and New York; C. C. Collings, of the C. C. Collings Company, Philadelphia; Russell McInes, representing Lehman Brothers, New York; J. M. G. Brown and Samuel S. Blackman, representing Analyses, Inc., Philadelphia, and Leon C. Guest and Herbert Glucksman, Camden bond brokers. 

Camden Courier-Post
February 26, 1936

Harold L. Ickes
Frederick Von Nieda
Frank B. Hanna



Rulers Defer Naming City's Finance Adviser During Bitter Session
Hartmann Charges Bennett Agreed to Drop 60 Plan Of Refunding

New Applicant for Post as Consultant Interviewed


Camden City Commission failed again yesterday to settle the ques­tion: Who will be Camden's financial adviser?

A meeting called to settle the point yesterday was adjourned until 2 p. m. today over the violent protest of Commissioner Harold W. Bennett, director of revenue and finance.

Among the surprises of the meeting was the statement by Commissioner Frank J. Hartmann, Jr., that Commissioner Harold W. Bennett, director of revenue and finance, and Mayor Frederick von Nieda agreed Tuesday to abandon Chapter 60 as the basis for refunding the city's indebtedness and making the 1936 budget.

Bennett Makes Denial

Bennett denied this vehemently, but Hartmann, after the meeting, said:

I don't care how much he denies it. He and the mayor agreed to yield on that point. Mr. Bennett is not going to get away with telling me one thing in a private conference and saying another for purposes of appealing to the public."

Hartmann's charge attracted unusual attention due to the fact Bennett has held out from the first mention of refunding of Chapter 60 -a rigid and stringent law requiring the city to maintain a cash basis of pay-as-you-go operations, under strict state supervision, for a minimum of 20 years.

Hartmann said Bennett and von Nieda agreed to "go along" on the less stringent provisions of Chapter 77, bolstered by local assurances that would give bondholders virtually the same guarantees they would receive under Chapter 60, but without invoking upon the city the strict and long-term regulation by state authorities.

Another Applicant

Commissioner George E. Brunner asked for yesterday's adjournment on the ground that another man or agency, whom the commissioners had not interviewed, desired to pre­sent a proposal to the commissioners yesterday afternoon.

Bennett objected that noon Tuesday was the deadline set for applications and said they are closed as far as he is concerned. He took the position it would be unethical to consider any more applications for the job, and delivered this ultima­tum:

"I refuse to accept any responsibility for any further delay in making Camden's 1936 budget and refunding plan. Let's settle it now."

Nevertheless, the other four commissioners interviewed the new applicant at 5 p. m. and may consult another today.

The new seeker of the post of official fiscal adviser is George S. Burgess, president of the State Service Bureau, which publishes the Legislative Index for New Jersey and the New Jersey Municipal Reporter, and also supplies a municipal financial information service to hundreds of officials, including, Burgess said, the state auditor, Walter R. Darby.

Burgess is credited with devising and placing in operation the municipal accounting system in Massachusetts and with setting up the system of accounting by which the War Department settled war contracts, and represented the War De­partment in litigation involving numerous problems of accounting,

Opposes Chapter 80

Burgess is revealed as opposed to Chapter 60 for most municipalities. He is quoted in one of his own publications as saying:

"The Barbour bill (Chapter 50, 1934) is an ideal conception for sound municipal financing, but few places can operate under it until their tax collections increase decidedly. The earning power of the people in a large number of municipalities is far short of such a possibility."

He listed as the municipal finance advisory board of his concern the following men:

William H. Albright, New Jersey State Treasurer, as chairman of the board, Senator John C. Barbour (sponsor of Chapter 60), of Passaic county, president of the State Senate, Raymond M. Greer, Comptroller of Jersey City and member of a New York firm of accountants, Arthur N. Pierson, treasurer of Union county, Samuel S. Kenworthy, executive secretary of the New Jersey State League of Municipalities.

Promises Price Today

Burgess did not submit a price on his services but told the commissioners he will submit one by 1  p.m. today or before that time.

He informed the commissioners his firm is serving four municipalities in New Jersey as financial adviser now and said his experience covers many similar services to Massachusetts’ cities.

Burgess also said he understands budget-making and financial practices on a big scale, partly through serving after the World War as con­sulting auditor for the War Department, reporting directly to General Herbert M. Lord, then director of finances for the War Department and subsequently director of the budget for the United States.

It was indicated by the commissioners another man may be interviewed today on an application to be adviser for the city.

The interview with Burgess followed a hectic meeting in which numerous charges were hurled and the commissioners teetered on the brink of revealing confidences that have been kept hidden behind closed portals for the past few days.

Bennett Assailed

Among them was a charge by Hartmann that Bennett has done nothing to carry out the commission's instructions to contact bond­holders and attempt to obtain reductions in interest rates on city bonds.

Bennett denied this angrily and asked:            

"How do  you think I got the interest down? (On tax revenue notes) By sitting back and laughing?"

Bennett argued that the city's budget must be passed by the commission by March 9 and that any further delay past yesterday would jeopardize the city's standing and bring about a state of "chaos."

Bennett also denied he has ever favored employment of a financial adviser, though he told a gathering of commissioners, freeholders, bond dealers and attorneys Monday that he thought the city's differences could best be settled by an adviser.

He declined to follow the suggestion of L. Arnold Frye, of Hawkins, Delafield and Longfellow, counsel for the city on bond matters.

Frye Asks Peace

Frye urged the commissioners to settle their differences and agree upon a plan among themselves.

Hartmann also brought out an intimation that "the city was to be divided up by the bondholders," and this brought another hot denial from Bennett.

Commissioner Mary W. Kobus revealed that in considering applications for fiscal adviser, the commission also has considered having the man with the plan do the actual work of placing the bonds, a function that normally would fall under Bennett's jurisdiction.

Bennett insisted his department is capable of handling the financial affairs of the city and would have them composed by now if it had been allowed a free rein.

Another surprise resulted when Thomas J. Fox, who said he is "a small taxpayer" and lives at 608 Royden Street, urged the commission to hold up all refunding for ten days and promised it could be settled then on a plan he is working out.

Fox said he is retired and told reporters he and two other men are working out a refunding plan for the city that will prevent a tax increase and will enable the city to pay all interest. He added:

"I'm the most important one." The entire debate resulted from a motion to adjourn, made by Brunner. Everything that preceded this motion had been passed unanimously.

Applicants who appeared Tuesday to ask for the city adviser's post were Melbourne F. Middleton, former commissioner; Leon C. Guest, Camden investment securities broker; Thomas R. Lill, New York technical adviser of governmental administration and finance, and J. P. Ramsey, who represented Norman S. Tabor, New York specialist in municipal finances.

Dr. Frank Parker, University of Pennsylvania finance professor and nationally known as an economist, and Thomas Christensen, former Atlantic county accountant, were unable to appear.

Tabor, now doing similar work in Cleveland and Akron, Ohio, would be unable to appear personally before Monday, the commission was advised by Ramsey, but the latter's bid was confirmed by his superior over long-distance telephone.

Lill, who has had a wide, international experience in technical finance work, is now adviser to the Atlantic City bondholders' committee.

The four applicants on Tuesday briefly sketched a review of their past activities in similar work, told of their plans for Camden, and the compensation they would require for the work.

Guest, the first to be heard, described himself as a Camden native who has handled many Camden bonds in the past.

Middleton, who followed, said his plan for Camden was substantially the same as the program he submitted October 2, 1935, when he applied for the position of financial adviser. The city's first director of revenue and finance under commission form of government, Middleton is now engaged in the bond business in Philadelphia.

Ramsey described the Tabor company as the only one of its kind in the United States. It has refinanced more than 100 cities, 40 in New Jersey, and works with 164 bond dealers. Ramsey submitted a long list of bank and insurance company executives as references.

Lill said he began his finance career in 1911. In 1918 he was director of the Mexican Refinancing Commission, representing President Carranza in international negotiations until Carranza's assassination.

After that, Lill served the Republic of Colombia as technical adviser for five years; Chile for two, Yucatan for two, and has worked in cities all over the United States and in Canada. He was chosen by the Atlantic City bond-holders' committee 2½  years ago, still serving as technical adviser for that group, he said. 



Many of the 116,000 aliens receiving relief in New Jersey are "biting the hand that is feeding them,"

 Mayor Frederick von Nieda said in addressing the Craftsmen's Protective Association of the New York Shipbuilding Corporation.  

The mayor addressed more than 1000 craftsmen and their friends at a dance and vaudeville entertainment in Red Men's Hall, Fourth and Pearl streets.

Von Nieda charged many of these aliens on relief are radicals and have no place in this country.

"When you go over to Communism, either pink or red, I am no longer your friend," von Nieda declared.

Camden Courier-Post - February  8, 1936 

Reserve Officers Plan 6th Military Reception, Ball

The sixth annual military reception and ball under the auspices of the Reserve Officers' Association will be held at the Hotel Walt Whitman next Friday, February 14. Honor guests will include officials of the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, National Guard of the United States and of the reserve corps of New Jersey, Philadelphia and vicinity.  

Congressman and Mrs. Charles A. Wolverton, Mayor and Mrs. Frederick von Nieda, Rear Admiral S. Robison, U.S.N., (retired) and Mrs. Robison, Brigadier General Cyrus S. Radford, U.S.M.C., (retired) and Mrs. Radford: Commander George W. Keefe, U.S.N.R. and Mrs. Keefe and Col. E. O. Howell, Jr., commanding officer of the 309th Infantry, and Mrs. Howell, will be among the honor guests.

Jack Wright will conduct the Penn Troubadors in providing music for dancing the grand march which will be held late in the evening. A reception in honor of Admiral Robison will follow.

The committee for the reception and ball is composed of the following: Capt. Henry Rosenfeld, Jr., of Mt. Holly, chairman; Capt. Luther M. Mkitarian and Lieut. E. Bernard Weaver of Camden, president of the local chapter of the reserves association; Lieut. John B. Ward of Chews Lieut. William DeH. Washington, of Riverton; Lieut. Robert Creighton, Lieut. Roy Evans, N.G.N.J., Ensign Robert Winkel of Audubon; Ensign Garold A. Moneysmith of Westmont; Lt. Chas. Richardson and Lieut. John Neath of Haddonfield.



Mayor Frederick von Nieda will be guest speaker at the Gardeners' Institute Forum tomorrow at 3 p. m. in the Friends Meeting House, Market street above Seventh. 

The choir of the North Baptist Church also will attend. Dr. James G. Rodger will conduct the meeting.

Camden Scrip - 1936
Click on Image to Enlarge


August 1, 1936 

Camden Courier-Post - August 31, 1936
....his eyes started watering and thereby hangs a tale - not his, however....
S. Raymond Dobbs - E.G.C. Bleakly - Dr. David Helm - Frank J. Hartmann Jr.
Frederick von Nieda - Charles L. Humes

Mr. Von Nieda was my mother's attorney and I remember him showing me his outstanding gun collection which he had put together when he was mayor.

Edward Pond, December 2003

Camden Courier-Post - August 8, 1936

Camden Courier-Post - August 21, 1936

Camden Courier-Post - August 22, 1936


Camden Courier-Post - August 31, 1936 



Firmin Michel

Rud Priesendanz Jr.

John J. Crean

Clarence Moulette

George E. Brunner

Frank J. Hartmann Jr.

Frederick von Nieda

Harold W. Bennett

Federal Street

Camden Courier-Post - February 2, 1938

17 Democratic Assemblymen Reported Pledged to Baird
Former Camden Jobholders at Trenton Trying to Line Up Votes
to Retain Ex-Leader on Bridge Board; Hoffman Hinted Back' of 'Deal'


With both sides at a stalemate over the Delaware River Joint Commission appointment, local political circles today were agog- over a state house report that all 17 Democratic Assemblymen are pledged to vote for David Baird.

Baird, a one-time Republican leader here, is holding an ad interim appointment given him by the outgoing Governor Hoffman while the Legislature was not in session. However, regular appointments to the bridge commission must be made by both branches at the Legislature and not by the governor.

State Senator Albert E. Burling and Assemblyman Rocco Palese were reported prepared to submit former State Senator Albert S. Woodruff's name Monday night. Assemblymen Lawrence Ellis and Millard Allen, on the other hand, hail been reported ready to submit Baird's name.

Neither side made a move toward introducing the necessary resolution, but both factions were busily engaged in lining up votes.

Woodruff Seen Confident

Woodruff supporters claimed they have enough votes- all Republican- to elect the attorney. They said there are 23 Republican Assemblymen who will refuse positively to vote for Baird even should Baird's name be the only one submitted.

It was the well-circulated report that Baird would get unanimous help from the Democrats, however, that had the State House corridors buzzing last night. Some greeted the report with an I-don't-believe-it-because-Baird-never-deals-with-Democrats expression, while others laughingly dismissed the rumor with a I knew-it-all-the-time attitude.

The report started when one of the lobbyists asked Traffic Judge Lewis Paladeau, of Jersey City, a Hague spokesman, whether the Democratic Assemblymen would take sides in the contest. Judge Paladeau replied:

"The 17 Democratic votes are pledged." He declined to say to which candidate.

But several Democrats who had the judge's ear told the wide world that Judge Paladeau had confided that all 17 votes were for Baird.

Hoffman's Hand Seen

Some onlookers who heard reports that this pledge was the result of some footwork by the same ex-Governor Hoffman who was able, when he was chief executive, to find no end of help from the Hague Democrats when he needed it for his friends.

Another report was that the Camden Democrats had asked Jersey City to "keep Baird in the picture" for obvious reasons.

Assemblymen Ellis and Allen surprised their associates by joining the Baird button-holers in trying to enlist votes. Both Allen and Ellis had told Surrogate Frank B. Hanna, state committeeman, that they were for Baird only because they had pledged him their votes before Woodruff's name was proposed, and that they didn't wish to break their word to Baird. They didn't tell Hanna that they had pledged themselves to get other votes for Baird.

Ellis' Statement

Ellis stated this afternoon:

"I was approached after Mr. Baird's name was announced by Hoffman for the ad interim appointment. No one, from the county committee or anyone else, has ever mentioned any other name to me. I was asked by Mr. Baird how I felt about his appointment, and I replied 'All right, Mr. Baird. As far as I know you've always been a Republican. Since I've been approached by no one else, it's all right with me.'

"As far as approaching other Assemblymen last night is concerned, it was to this extent: A number of Assemblymen from other counties asked me how the Camden county delegation stood, and I told them it was two against one,

"As far as I am concerned, unless we can get 31 Republican votes I won't put in Mr. Baird's name. But if the others get help from the Democrats, and bring up Mr. Woodruff's name in the House, it would be no more them fair that Mr. Baird's name be brought up and find out exactly how the vote stood."

Among the vote-for-Baird lobbyists in the State House corridors were present and former jobholders. These included Mrs. Florence Baker, State committeewoman; City Commissioner Frederick von Nieda, former Mayor Roy R. Stewart, former Assemblyman Edwin G. Scovel, and William Lehman, who is a candidate for appointment to William A. E. King's job on the county board of elections.

Von Nieda Explains

Von Nieda declared he was in Trenton because he is "interested in the light plant bill and some fish and game measures." Yesterday, he reiterated this, but also said:

"I didn't go to Trenton primarily on the Baird matter, although Baird is a fine chap, it is a matter of principle. He was appointed by Hoffman probably without his knowledge, now someone is challenging his ability to fill the job."

Scovel was asked whether he and von Nieda had tried to get votes for Baird last night.

“We did what we could for Baird," replied Scovel. "I am for him. There was a lot of button-holing on both sides. You'd think it's a $10,000 job."

Mrs. Baker was the first on the scene and tried her luck with the Essex delegation; including Senator Clee: The latter listened to her exhortation that he had always received help from the Camden Republicans and then smilingly averred:

"It looks like you're trying to sell me an applecart." Mrs. Baker said she wasn't; she was trying to sell him a diamond.

Hanna, Alfred Driscoll, Haddonfield commissioner, and Assistant City Solicitor Edward V. Martino were among those who lined up votes for Woodruff..

Camden Courier-Post - February 2, 1938


Chairmen of the Camden City Garden Institute will meet in the City Hall office of City Commissioner Frederick von Nieda, director of the Institute, tomorrow night to formulate a program of gardening and entertainment for the 1938 season. The season begins March 17.

An executive committee will be organized to direct the activities of the Institute. Walter S. Agin, vice president, will preside.

The program arranged will be presented to the gardener membership at a meeting February 15 in Room 116, City Hall.

Agin announced Commissioner von Nieda will donate several prizes for the best gardens this Summer.

Camden Courier-Post - February 5, 1938

The way some of the members of the Camden County Republican Committee are behaving these days, the Democrats can stay home on their own meeting nights .... The Republicans are doing their work for them .... Now some 70 of the Republican committeemen have signed a petition to give Baird a job that won't pay him anything.... It's about time they're giving him something .... They took the U. S. Senatorship away from him .... Moore took the governorship away from him .... Woodruff took the state committeeship away from him .... The New Deal took the city commission away from him .... The New Deal took the freeholders away from him:.:. Somebody always is taking something away from Baird ....

It isn't a question of Baird's ability to fill the bridge job .... The only one to even mention that as an issue was Fred von Nieda .... He's a city commissioner, you know .... It's a matter of principle .... At least, that is what Florence Baker, state com­mitteewoman, says .... Mrs. Baker is telling Senator, Clee and others at Trenton that they owe it to Baird to support him for the job because he has always helped Clee ...Let's, in all fairness to Baird, look at the record .... In the primary, during an address at the First Ward Republican Club, Dave Baird stated he was for Cliff Powell against Clee .... Mrs. Baker did not come out against Clee .... She didn't come out against Powell. Instead, she said she was neutral. In the general election, Mrs. Baker said she was for Clee. Baird never said he was for Clee. (If he had, Clee's majority of 35,000 would have gone to Moore) ....

So we don't think that Mrs. Baker is very convincing when she tells Clee that Baird helped Clee .... She said that the Camden county legislative delegation helped Clee's program against Hoffman. Was Baird a Democrat last year? Sheehan, Roye and Lodge were .... Burling was a Republican, and helped Clee, but he is not for Baird. Perhaps it was because Baird "helped" Clee's program against Hoffman opposition, that Hoffman slipped in Baird's appointment without the knowledge of Burling or the state or county committee members .... Mrs. Baker stated at a banquet that she has copies of the Courier-Post in 1931 in which Baird was praised for his bridge work .... If anyone cares to look at our files, we will show what Mrs. Baker said about Baird in the neighborhood of 1931. ... Or what we said about Baird at other times .... Also what Mr. van Nieda and Frank Travaline said.

But enough ado about nothing .... All we've done is talked about Baird when it had been our plan instead to talk about politics.

* * *

The political ax is hanging over the head of a Mt. Ephraim official on the charge he is assuming too much authority ..... The political ax hanging over the heads of the Delaware township cops is about to be enmeshed in litigation .... One of the policeman is a member of the P.B.A. which will carry his fight into court in a case that will be a precedent for the other township cops, too .... Herb Taylor will be county engineer if it goes to a Republican .... It may be a Democrat however, and newest among the candidates, on that side of the ledger is former City Commissioner Carroll P. Sherwood .... There may be only one assistant county solicitor instead of two in which case it will probably go to Carleton Rowand, city school board member .... 

By the way, don't, be surprised if under the new contract between the city and county on maintenance of the City Hall, the city takes full control of the building with consent of the county ... Which will be tough on some of the county jobholders ...* * *.

Assemblyman Allen now denies he wants all us newspaper fellers to go to the guillotine ... He says he meant lawyers ... Charlie Humes wants to be guillotined ... Standing up ... Incidentally, Charlie is defending his last-place position in the ping-pong league tonight… Firefighter Lennox went to church the other day… And found the roof braced up. When will the borough of Merchantville fix up that dangerous hole in Browning road at the railroad tracks north of Maple Avenue? ... Or is that in the township?

Whenever the state police want Detective Wojtkowiak at the prosecutor's office, ·they ask for "Sergeant Watchyourcoatandhat" … The Mt. Ephraim commissioners are going to buy a police car for their chief ... He's also in for a pay rise ... Bellmawr's chief of police won't get the salary increase he wants, but he will get an additional allowance for the use of his car ... Runnemede's two new cops will also get pay increases …

The other day an alarm was sent to every police department in the county and also to the Philadelphia cops that a car had been stolen in Audubon ... The culprit is glad no cops saw him ... He was none other than a police official who wanted to borrow a storekeeper's car but took the wrong one by mistake ... His face is almost as red as Vince (deP) Costello's ... At the K. of C. roller skating exhibition the other night, Luke McKenna did a few fancy turns ... Vince recalled he, too, had been pretty good at one time, so he essayed to show his friends ... His intentions were better than his legs, and a couple of well-­wishers followed him around the floor with a stretcher.

This all happened quietly The Runnemede police received a complaint from two storekeepers ... It appears that a group of high school students from another town had stopped off at Runnemede to purchase some cakes ... Several other articles disappeared from the stores ... A few days later the dean of the high school went to Runnemede paid one shopkeeper $10 and the other $2.60 ... Representing the goods they said were taken ...

Aside to that clairvoyant weakly editor who reported yesterday that Joe Van Meter is going to be the Republican nominee for sheriff: A sheriff cannot succeed himself in New Jersey ... Silvio Fittipaldi, former Haddon Heights High star, is a veterinarian and doing nicely ... A Philadelphia college professor who lives in Pennsauken uses his spare time writing a book ... Home by 4.30 p.m. from work, he retires at 8 p.m., rises at 3.30 a.m., writes for four hours, breakfasts and goes to work ... The Playcrafters are busy rehearsing "Post Road" for Feb. 18 and 19 ... A warrant is in the mails for a suburban doctor ... Illegal operation ... Fred Homer. Merchantville song-bird, had an audition in New York recently before the Metropolitan Opera Audition Committee ... What Collingswood shopkeeper's missus is having trouble getting a costume for a minstrel show? ... They're still looking for better buses on Route 14 ...

Carlton Rowand told this one at a dinner the other night… The foreman on a western WPA job wired Farley for more materials to finish the job ... "We need 2000 shovels in a hurry," the foreman wired ..."We ran out of shovels," replied Farley. "Let the men lean on each other."

Camden Courier-Post - February 9, 1938

Is Zat So?

May we not at this time proffer a suggestion to Mayor Brunner, Eddie Kelleher and the other party sachems that should be a sure-fire plan to make Camden county safe for Democracy? We advise that the Democrats gather a fund of $4000, the money to be expended in giving testimonial dinners to Republican leaders, near-leaders and persons who figure themselves to be both.

Engage tables enough to accommodate about 350 persons. Invite representatives of all the various G. O. P. factions in the county, give a half dozen tickets to boisterous Democrats, so that the latter can sit back in their seats and enjoy the subsequent dogfight on a full stomach.

This idea that I am advancing to register about 5000 more Democrats in the county and paralyze the remnants of the once-powerful county G.O.P., was born when I attended the recent testimonial dinner to Louis Bantivoglio, freeholder from the Fifth ward.

Naturally my attendance was purely in a professional capacity. Speeches were made by divers and sundry spokesmen, the high-light being the sales talk for Bantivoglio and Baird by David Baird, Jr. The latter waxed wrathfully but warily in castigating the "half-breeds," as he once sarcastically termed the Republicans of the ilk and stature and political. leanings of Commissioner Mary W. Kobus.

Rarely, too, have we ever attended a banquet, either in the capacity of guest or reporter that ever awakened so many echoes of the past as did the dinner to the Fifth ward freeholder.


First came the information from friends of Commissioner Kobus that she was responsible for the election of Bantivoglio from the Fifth ward as freeholder. In view of the fact that Squire Baird seemed to feel that the freeholder's election was a personal triumph; this appeared strange to yours truly.

We moseyed about, however, and discovered that whether the squire likes it or not Mary W. Kobus and her minions did elect Bantivoglio. The leaders of the Kobus faction who put, the thing across were headed by a woman named Madeline Salvatore and a gentleman named "Bucky" Branch.

Bantivoglio was elected by something less than 40 votes, These votes could easily have been given to his opponent but there were strategic reasons why the Kobus faction didn't want a Democrat chosen from the Fifth ward.

So Branch, who is a policeman, I believe, and who was not working on election day, it being his regular day off, went into his precinct and put over the votes that elected Bantivoglio .

And Mr. "Bucky" Branch, I have been informed, has been so sore at the fact that he did elect Louis Bantivoglio that he moans and cries and berates himself ever since the trick was turned ..

Politicos who told me the story about the Kobus support for Bantivoglio gave a rather sensible reason for the step that was taken by the anti-Baird folk. The New Dealers among the Republicans sensed that the division between the Republicans and Democrats in the 1938 Board of Freeholders was going: to be exceedingly close.

Too close, in fact, to take any chances. So it was decided to support Bantivoglio in the Fifth ward, because he was a regular Baird Republican and couldn't be won to the coalition, The reasoning of the Kobusitees was clear and correct.

Had Bantivoglio been beaten by a Democrat, the board would have been divided equally, The Democrats would then have been able to deal with an individual rather than a faction, One vote would have given either side control. Thus by putting Bantivoglio across the Kobus faction made it imperative for the Democrats to deal with that clique; in fact Brunner and his minions had to do that little thing.

In view of this analysis I'm con tent to believe that the Kobus claim that the New Dealers elected Louis Bantivoglio is absolutely okay.


Now don't get the information askew. Mrs. Kobus had no official or personal hand in this matter. It was the keen thought of some of her lieutenants, whose judgment appears to have been excellent, that fashioned this plan and executed it.

Meanwhile numerous politicos have been jibing Baird's statement that he would "rather have one Louis Bantivoglio than 1000 ingrates.". These political seers and soothsayers declared that such a declaration proved that its author was all wet in his political judgment and short sighted in his political history.

These politicos ambushed Mackay the other day, crammed him. into a corner and told him that if it "hadn't been for Bantivoglio Baird would have control of the city commission today."

These chuckling anti-Bairdites not only bearded me in my den, but dared me to disprove their statements by taking a look at the record. A stranger to politics in Camden, I didn't know the import of this statement until I squinted at the ward returns for the 1935 city commission election.

There in black and white is the proof that Baird lost the city commission fight because of the Bantivoglio-Leo Rea alliance in the Fifth ward. Just to take a look at the record again and to refresh jaded memories, the regular Baird slate received the following votes in the Fifth ward:

Bennett, 1016; Leonard, 1001; Lummis, 962; Rhone, 963; von Nieda, 1081. The New Deal ticket, then supported by the Messrs. Bantivoglio and Rea, polled these votes;· Baker, 1032; Brunner, 1022; Hartmann, 1001; Kobus, 1024, and Reesman, 930.

We would call your attention particularly to the Leonard-Hartmann vote. Louis and Leo supported candidates Brunner, Kobus and Hartmann, of the New Deal.

Leonard and Hartmann polled exactly the same vote, 1001. And the recount revealed Hartmann a winner by SEVEN votes, the box score showing Hartmann, 17,338, and Leonard, 17,331. And the Fifth ward turned the trick, for it would have been easy for Louis and Leo to have given Hartmann the same vote that Reesman received, or 71 less, and elected Leonard. There would have been no recount then.

Which scrutiny of the returns would seem to show that Bantivoglio as a friend of the squire proved his valor and vigilance in the cause by seating a New Deal commissioner and owing his seat in the Board of Freeholders to the Kobus clan.

In connection with this fund which the Democrats should raise to give testimonial dinners to G.O.P. leaders et cetera we might suggest that on each occasion they have, David Baird Jr., named for a new office. In order, that my friend, Florence Baker, can show her loyalty and friendship to the Old Guard Field Marshal by asking his election to the said office.

This suggestion to, the Messrs. Brunner, Kelleher and the others is made tax-free, and no charge for usage. If that scheme doesn't make Camden county safe for Democracy, nothing will.

Camden Courier-Post - February 9, 1938

Tall Cedars to Entertain National Head at Fete Here Saturday

Charles Siegel, Supreme Tall Cedar of the United States, and his official Camden Forest No.5, staff will be honored at a dinner and at the second annual charity ball of the Tall Cedars of Lebanon, at the Walt Whitman Hotel Saturday night.

Among the guests will be City Commissioner Frederick von Nieda and Mrs. von Nieda; City Commissioner Frank J. Hartmann and Mrs. Hartmann, Surrogate F. B. Hanna and Mrs. Hanna, Sheriff Joseph Van Meter and Mrs. Van Meter, Mr. and Mrs. Paul Pearson, Mr. and, Mrs. August Romelle, Mr. and Mrs. Frederick Hicks, Mr. and Mrs. Elmer Cook, Mr. and Mrs. James Knox, Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Brown.

Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Forsythe, Mr. and Mrs. Walter Giffins, Mr. and Mrs. William Del Baugh, Mr. and Mrs. Edwin Reeves, Mr. and Mrs. William E. Strouse, Mr. and Mrs. Wilbur Peters, William G. Rohrer, Miss Flora Tulk, Mr. and Mrs. George Murray, Mr. and Mrs. Howard Dahl, Mr. and Mrs. Paul Ireton, Mr. and Mrs. Walter Mattison, Mr. and Mrs. Elmer Burgess, Mr. and Mrs. Paul Miles, Lieutenant Albert Eckenroth and Mrs. Eckenroth.

Music will be furnished by the Famous Sonny James Orchestra.

Camden Courier-Post *  February 11, 1938

City Bureaus Keep Costs Within Budget for 1937
Brunner Lauds Rulers for $40,000 Saving by Co-operation in Offices

All departments of the city government were operated within the budget appropriations "during 1937 and the city's saving, as a result, was $40,000, Mayor George E. Brunner announced yesterday.
"I believe it is the first time in years that all departments have finished a year without a single departmental deficit," Brunner commented.

The Mayor expressed public thanks and commendation to his fellow commissioners for "whole-hearted cooperation with me, as the city's chief fiscal officer, in giving the taxpayers a break."
Brunner's announcement was made at the meeting of the city commission in connection with approval of routine interdepartmental transfers of unspent funds to balance the various bureau budgets. Figures for the individual departments were not released.

The commission approved the form of a $302,000 bond issue to pay the Pennsylvania railroad and subsidiaries for the right of way in Seventh street, purchased but not paid for by a previous commission.

The bonds will mature serially and will bear interest at 3% percent. 

An ordinance amending the 1924 ordinance on protection, regulation and control of trees, in city parks and streets was passed on final reading.

Michel Explains Ordinance

Commissioner Frederick von Nieda asked Commissioner Frank J. Hartmann, Jr., to explain the new provisions, and Hartmann referred him to City Solicitor Firmin Michel, who explained:

The 1924 ordinance vested powers to permit plantings or removals and to fix penalties in the "Department of Parks," which does not exist.

The amendment vests these powers in the Bureau of Parks, the body which has control of trees and "other arboreal improvements."

The amendment also substitutes for specific arbitrary penalties for violation, as provided in the original ordinance, the blanket city ordinance penalties of fines not to exceed $200 and imprisonment not to exceed six months, or both.

"In my opinion the old penalties were not valid because they were not left to the discretion of the magistrate presiding," Michel said. "The city has the right to fix penalties, but must not attempt to take away the discretionary rights vested in magistrates."

The vote was unanimous after this explanation.

City Fund Increased

Approval of two resolutions providing adjustments on taxes and other liens on two properties will give the city $1450 in cash.

The commission approved acceptance of $1000 from Sylvan I. Seligman in settlement of unpaid taxes and liens, including the year 1937, on premises designated as the North side of Baird boulevard, Bridge boulevard and Maplewood street.

The other resolution provided acceptance of $450 in settlement of municipal claims on a property at 331 Royden street. The adjustment was made with the Beckett Building & Loan Association.

"In both these cases Mayor Brunner was successful in obtaining more money than was offered originally," Hartmann said.

In the first settlement, Hartmann said, the original amount was doubled and in the latter instance the amount was increased to give the city $150 additional. He then commended the Mayor for his record of driving consistently good bargains in tax settlements.

The election of three constables was approved. Hartmann nominated Peter Giardini, of 331 Beckett street, and Cyril J. Hughes, of 2262 South Eighth street. Commissioner Mary W. Kobus nominated Eugene Livingston, of 1025 Cooper street. All were elected for three year terms.

Bonds posted by James P. Conaghy, of the Sixth ward, and Frank J. Suttill, of the Seventh ward, both elected constables two weeks ago, were approved.

Title Sales Approved

Sale of three tax title certificates on as many properties was approved. Margaret A. Powell purchased the certificate covering the property at 506 Broadway upon agreement to pay all municipal liens.

Walter Dumbleton purchased certificates on property at 130 North Eleventh street and 2012 Arlington street, under a similar agreement.

Seven properties were acquired by payment of $175 for assignment of deeds. A resolution authorized the payment of $75 to Edward Handlers and wife for deeds covering 1418, 1420 and 1422 South Fourth street; payment of $75 to Elvena Simpson, for properties at 136, 138 and 140 Stanley street, and $25 to the Juniper Investment Corporation, covering premise's at 1029 Segal street.

The commission approved cancellation of taxes and liens on three properties acquired by foreclosure.

A used car sales license for Walter Viegel, 1169 Cooper street, and transfer of the license of George R. Van Sciver from Twelfth and State streets to 2610 Federal street, were approved.
Hartmann objected to granting licenses to dealers who leave cars parked in city streets.

"Between billboards, used car lots and cars parked in our city streets the City of Camden looks swell," Hartmann said. He voted in favor of both licenses.


Floor Show to Be Added Feature of Dance Here on Saturday

Plans for a snappy floor show as an additional feature' of the second annual charity ball of the Tall Cedars of Lebanon, Camden Forest No. 5, were announced yesterday.

Sonny James with the recording and broadcasting orchestra that bears his name, will supply the music— interspersing swing for the youngsters with waltzes for the old-timers.

James will present as the floor show attraction The Musical Aces and Their Queens, radio performers. 

Harold Stephans, vocalist with the orchestra, also will be featured.

The ball is scheduled for Saturday night at Hotel Walt Whitman.

The general committee consists of the membership of all other committees, which are:

Executive: Joseph C. Brown, Grand Tall Cedar, ex-officio; William E. Strouse, chairman and Daniel W. Forsyth, secretary and treasurer.

Grand Conductor: Walter W. Giffins.

Reception: Paul C. Ireton, leader; George Murray, Walter Morris, William Rohrer, Harry Holt, Vic Marx, Charles Ackley, Howard Dahl, Francis Gaskill, Frederick von Nieda, and Frank Hartmann.

Tickets, Walter Mattison; door, Louis Bull and Paul B. Miles, press, Frank H. Ryan. Electrical, Wilbur Peters; wardrobe, Charles Neil, William Strong, Elmer Burgess, Taylor Kellogg and Charles Green; safety, Lieut. George W. Frost, Frank Jaggard, Russell Young and Francis Gutherman; decorations, Fred Knodel, Charles Dorrman, Harry Sykes, Harry Flowers, Merton McCormick, Edward Zimmerman and William Delbaugh.

Camden Courier-Post - February 12, 1938

IT takes no crystal gazer to know that former U. S. Senator W. Warren Barbour hopes to get the Republican senatorial nomination without opposition.. .So far no opposition has bloomed, but efforts are being made to get Robert Johnson, New Brunswick manufacturer who backed Glee, into the primary battle ...Unless the feeling against John Milton subsides, the Democrats will be hard put to find a suitable candidate for the job, unless they figure anybody can beat Barbour...

Put down a little bet that both new members of the county election board will be suburbanites. ..In fact, from adjoining municipalities. ..You might also safely say that when the Democrats name the new county solicitor (Vincent Gallaher), the coalition Republicans will name Cooper Brown, of Collingswood, as assistant solicitor... In spite of his visits to Jersey City, Prosecutor Samuel P. Orlando stands an excellent chance of not being reappointed. His successor, at this time, appears to be E. George Aaron, also a Democrat, but a Brunner Democrat .. .The Pennsauken Republican Women's Club will on next Tuesday have a speaker whose topic will be, "How to Be Happy and Contented Though a Republican". ..A lot of the boys in these here parts ought to go there and listen...
Former Mayor Victor King probably will be a candidate for City Commission in 1939.. Likewise for Morris Clyman, member of the Board of Assessors.. .Matt Van Istendal is being boomed as the new Republican leader of Collingswood as well as candidate for Assembly.. .So is Ed Marker of Haddon township (for Assembly).. .Both are good candidates ...

Henry Aitken, No. 1 coal wagon chaser, tried to get Commissioner von Nieda on the bridge commission until Hoffman slipped Baird in...Has the Baird boom gone boom?...That suburban handbill publisher printed that the next time Surrogate Hanna runs for public office it'll be city commissioner instead of a county post because he is weak in the suburbs... The last time Frank Hanna ran, it was for State committee, and he ran ahead of his running mate in every county municipality.

Camden Courier-Post - February 12, 1938
To Lead March

Camden Officials to Attend
Barbers' and Beauticians' Fete Monday

More than 700 persons, including Camden city and county officials, will attend the first annual ball of the Beauticians and Barbers Association to be given Monday night at the Moose ballroom, 808 Market street, Camden.

The group, a Gloucester city organization headed by Peter A. Sessa, president of the Gloucester Master Barbers, and Miss Florence Winters, president of the Beauticians, voted to hold the event in Camden because ample quarters are not available in Gloucester due to condemnation of the old city hall.

Guests at the ball will include City Commissioners Mary W. Kobus, Frank J. Hartmann, Jr., Harold W. Bennett, Frederick von Nieda and Mayor George Brunner. Other guests will be Postmaster Emma E. Hyland, Prosecutor Samuel P. Orlando, Judges Joseph Varbalow and Gene Mariano, Mary Soistmann, Democratic state committeewoman, and Frank B. Hanna and Mrs. Florence Baker, members o£ the Republican State Committee; City Solicitor Firmin Michel; Mayor John F. Gorman, of Gloucester; A. L. Kuhn, of Trenton, and Charles E. Paglucia, of Plainfield, members of the State Board of Barber Examiners; Lewis Waldman, of Trenton, president of the State Master Barbers' Association, and Vincent Ferrante, president of the Camden Master Barbers' Association.


She will lead the grand march of the first annual ball of the Beauticians and Barbers Association of Gloucester, to be held Monday night in the Moose ballroom, 808 Market street.

Music will be furnished by Bob Horton and his orchestra, and dancing will be supervised by Prof. Edward Daisey.

The committee in charge includes Lewis Kelly, chairman; Johanna Fox, secretary; Peter Pellegrino, treasurer; Verna Casey, Margaret Shuster, Catherine Moran, Effie Jones, Anna Caldwell, Florence Winters, Jean Gorman, Arthur Kinch, Nicholas Casto, Dominick La Bascio, Rocco Burgo, Peter Sessa and William Cheeseman.

Camden Courier-Post - February 24, 1938

Gordon Mackay - David Baird Jr. - Charles A. Wolverton - Louis Bantivoglio
Frederick von Nieda - Millard F. Allen - Wilfred Forrest

Camden Courier-Post - February 25, 1938

Frederick von Nieda - Frank J. Hartmann Jr. - Clay W. Reesman - Firmin Michel
Benjamin Shatz

Camden Courier-Post * July 24, 1941
David Baird Jr.
John R. Di Mona
F. Stanley Bleakly
George E. Brunner
William Myers
Frederick von Nieda
Louis Bantivoglio
William H. Heiser
Raymond G. Price
Arthur H. Holl
Stanley Ciechanowski
Ventorino Francesconi

Frank C. Schramm - Benjamin H. Slemmer
Albert E. Pugh - V. Claude Palmer
Samuel C. Berry - May Rich
Lillian Shoemaker - Charles Wilhelm
Laura B. Bilson - James Kershaw
George H. Walton


Alfred & Elsie Geister


Camden Courier-Post - July 26, 1941

Frederick von Nieda - Noel Magnus - River Avenue

Camden Courier-Post * August 15, 1942
Richard Donnelly - Frederick von Nieda - Charles H. Ellis - Robert Ashenfelter - Victor S. King
North 30th Street

Camden Courier-Post - February 17, 1950 

Camden Courier-Post - February 18, 1950 

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Camden Courier-Post - February 20, 1950 
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Camden Courier-Post - February 21, 1950 
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Camden Courier-Post - February 24, 1950 
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Camden ourier-Post - Spring, 1950 
Frederick von Nieda - George E. Brunner - Henry R. Leiner - Thomas Watson

Camden ourier-Post - Spring, 1950 
Frederick von Nieda - Minnie Martin - Henry R. Leiner