How Memorial Park in Nutley, N.J. came to be

Before the Mudhole it was the town's water supply and cows grazed here

Memorial Names Must Be Settled

(April 26, 1919) – Early in the discussion of the war memorial the question came up as to whose names should be memorialized and who should not.

Some wanted only those who were killed or wounded; some wanted only those who saw active service; others wanted the names of all who served in the Army, Navy and Marines listed, and still others thought every person who served in any official capacity whatever, at home or abroad, should be included.

 

 A subcommittee was appointed to consider the question and it submitted the following report:

"In making its recommendations to the Nutley Memorial Committee, the sub-committee on standardization desire to call attention to the peculiar difficulties attending a due and proper recognition of the unselfish devotion of both men and women of Nutley to the cause of humanity in the great war of 1914-1918.

This war has enlisted the energies of hosts of people in many directions who from the standpoint of patriotism deserve to be remembered.

At first we had the generous intent of listing all such but the organizations increased in numbers and the enumeration threatened to exhaust the alphabet.

We were forced by necessity therefore to draw a sharp line of demarcation and it seems to us that a natural and definite distinction exists as between the soldiers and sailors of the United States and all others.

We therefore recommend the two following recommendations:

First: That upon the town memorial shall appear the names of the men from Nutley who served in the Army and Navy of the United States in the great war.

Secondly: in the judgment of the committee churches, lodges and other organizations might well adopt a more liberal policy, and memorialize all of their members both men and women, who have served the United States or the Allies in the war."

It was apparent when the report was read that there was a strongly dissenting opinion, but to expedite business it was accepted and held for future consideration.

As the final vote on memorial comes up at the next meeting, which is scheduled for May 12, the committee is anxious that a full discussion of the question take place so that it may be settled by a vote at his meeting before the vote on the memorial is taken.

The committee thinks that this question is one likely to produce friction unless it is thoroughly aired and settled now.


Nutley Memorial Parkway

‘A Tree For Each Who Served’

(June 7, 1919) – (A message to the People of Nutley Explaining the Plan For Financing Nutley Memorial Parkway)

The plan is to plant one tree for each Nutley person who entered the service during the war. These trees will be interspersed with shrubs.

Each individual who served with the colors will have one tree planted and named for him, and the tree and its location will be drawn by lot so that no favoritism can be shown.

We propose to set out 427 trees, that being the number of Nutley persons who entered the service.

Land must be bought as well as trees, shrubs, markers for trees, memorial tablets, pathway throughout the park, cleaning and deepening the pond, grading, etc.

The minimum sum to be raised for this work is $10,000 to $12,000. The more we get, the more we can do.

The method approved for raising money is to sell the trees for $25 each and shrubs for $1 each.

These prices of course do not represent the actual cost of either trees or shrubs, but is simply a unit price designed to provide a single and simple method of raising funds sufficient to cover the cost of creating the Parkway.

This is not the project of any small group of men. We are convinced that it will appeal to the sympathies and understanding of everyone in Nutley and will receive prompt and enthusiastic support.

There is nothing sectional or restricted about it.

The soldiers came from all over town, people from all over town will buy the trees and shrubs.

We hope that every living soul in Nutley will buy at least one tree or shrub for this Parkway.

As much honor goes with a small subscription as with a large one. All will give according to their means.


Nutley Sons Honor Roll - World War 1 fatalities - photo by Anthony Buccino

Memorial Parkway

A bronze memorial at Chestnut Street entrance

 Pathway extending length of parkway 427 trees, ‘a tree for each who served’

A copper marker bearing name of each who served

Memorial boulder and bronze tablet bearing names of 17 men who died

This boulder to be surrounded by grove of 17 trees

Purchase of strip of land from the Schneider heirs, 1040 feet long by 75 feet wide

The cleaning and deepening of Kingsland Pond, making it suitable for canoeing, swimming and skating.

Four hundred and twenty-seven bronze medals, ‘one for each who served’

Handsomely engraved list, alphabetically arranged, of the names of those who served, to be framed and hung on the wall of the Library.


Sources:

Nutley Sons Honor Roll Nutley sons who died in World War One

The Nutley Sun

Nutley New Jersey News History Archives

Nutley Historical Society

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The Nutley Historical Society is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to serve the educational, cultural and historical needs of our community.

65 Church Street, Nutley N.J. 07110
973-667-1528

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