Days of Yore
as recounted by

Bill Day


Thousand Islands
Almost immediately adjacent to the library section here, across Tanner Street, is the district comprising the streets of Wilkins Avenue, Rosedale Avenue and Allen Avenue which was named the Wilkins Tract after the houses were built, but originally, when it was just a field, it was "The Thousand Islands",  called that by the natives of the town.  Endeavoring to find the reason of the name "Thousand Islands", some of the long time residents were contacted, among when were Harry Githens, Howard Griffath and Ben Wood.

It was learned that a creek ran through the section which came from the Chestnut Street area.  It was piped under the Main Street and made the ground marshy with small high section that appeared exactly like islands.  Willow trees grew on each side of the stream.  Mr. Wood said that he believed that the "Islands" name originated thus.  He went on to say that he had owned the three double houses that stood on Tanner Street near the Willits Coal and Lumber Yard.  He can remember stacking boards on his properties to keep water from his houses after a bad storm.  They were know as the "board yard houses" as originally they had been built for the lumberyard employees.  Mr. Herb Gleeson remembered the high school baseball team playing its schedule on one section of "The Islands".  One afternoon he went back after supper to see the end of a twenty-six inning game that was played between Roman Catholic High School from Philadelphia and Haddonfield High School.  A tannery was also located in the area; the building is still standing. Homepage
Contact Alan Day
Days of Yore Homepage