MRS. LUCRETIA S. McCORMACK READ was born in the Frankford section around 1853. Early in life she moved to Camden NJ. Known to friends as Lulu, she married William T. Read at the age 20. The 1880 Census shows Mr. and Mrs. Read living with their one-year old son at the home of her widowed mother, Mrs. Augusta McCormack, at 710 Market Street in Camden.
The Read family moved to a home at 514 Cooper Street on November 11, 1883. By 1887 William T. Read Sr. had his own real estate and insurance business at 227 Federal Street.
In 1890 William T. Read Sr. died, leaving his wife and son William T. Read Jr. She did raised her son to a high standard, as William T. Read Jr. would have a long and successful career in law, banking, and politics in Camden, serving as State Senator, State Treasurer, and was at one time a vice-president of the First Camden National Bank & Trust, where he worked with F. Morse Archer. His son Walter would later partner with Archer's son in the still prominent Archer, Greiner, & Read law firm, known in 2003 as Archer & Greiner.
After her husband's passing Mrs. Read involved herself in many community activities. She was one of the founders of the Linden Baptist Church, and of the Italian Baptist Mission at South 3rd Street and Line Streets. Mrs. Read was an active member of the Camden Woman's Club, serving two terms as President in the 1930s.
Lucretia Read's main interest was the Camden Home for Friendless Children, where she served in many capacities, including president of the Board of Managers.
In 1927, the Plaza Club Hotel, later renamed the Hotel Plaza, was built adjacent to here home at 500-512 Cooper Street.
After 1934 Mrs. Read's failing health curtailed her civic activities. She died of pneumonia on October 30, 1936, in Camden. After funeral services at the Joseph Murray Funeral Home, located in the next block on Cooper Street, she was buried at Colestown Cemetery in what was then Delaware Township, present day Cherry Hill NJ.
Lucretia Read was survived by her daughter, Mrs. Edith German of Merchantville NJ, and her sons Walter N. Read and Dr. William T. Read. Her home at 514 Cooper Street was converted into a doctors' office building by 1947, and remains in use as of 2004.
514 Cooper Street
William T. Read Sr.
City Hall in
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Photo by Phil Cohen 2002
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