Preserving Hopewell Yard Sale Artifacts

It’s Hopewell Borough’s 2021 Annual Town-Wide Yard Sale weekend! So as you clear out the attic and browse the sales, please be on the lookout for historic artifacts that we can preserve and share here on the History Project site.

We welcome all types of materials that illustrate and explain our past, including:

  • Printed – Books, pamphlets, deeds / plans, or other papers on local people, organizations, places, events, etc.
  • Geographic – Maps or aerial images of local areas
  • Imagery – Photos, drawings, artwork, or even family snapshots of local people, places, and events
  • Artifacts – Physical mementos of local organizations, businesses, etc.

See the bottom of the page for contact information.

To get started, here some fun examples of these kinds of materials, thanks to to recent discoveries by Doug and Linda Robbins. These may evoke fond memories for some people, and help others visualize the corresponding time and place – by now at once very different and yet also familiar.

Ice Cream Cartons – Eagle Bakery

                Quart and half-pint cardboard cartons – “Louie’s Ice Cream”
                              Side: “Eagle Bakery Products are Tasty / Like Mother Makes”

[Hopewell Herald, June 21, 1939]

Ludwig (Louie) and Martha Gerhard operated the Eagle Bakery from around 1935 to 1970, at 2 Mercer Street (most recently Franco’s / Vincenzo’s Pizza). During this time, they expanded by adding a self-service grocery store and a luncheonette, and featured Arctic ice cream.

The cartons are labelled as copyright 1938 by the Sutherland Paper Co., Kalamazoo, Mich.

Egg Carton – M. A. Zwaaf

                Carton for a dozen eggs – Grade A Medium –
                                “DeLuxe of Quality / Strictly Fresh New Jersey Eggs”

[Hopewell Herald, Feb. 16, 1944]

Mortimer A. Zwaaf was an egg wholesaler based on Blackwell Avenue through at least the 1940s and 1950s. He bought eggs and poultry from local farmers, and delivered them to Philadelphia and New York. In 1957, Zwaaf patented an “Egg Candler” device, to help automate visually grading eggs by replacing the need to hold each egg up to candle light with an apparatus that automatically rolled the eggs into viewing position in front of bright lights.

The carton is marked underneath as a patented “Egg-Safety” model, with trademarked “Twin” design with instructions for splitting it into two halves. The patent is from the mid-1930s.

Medicine Bottle – L. P. Hurley, Veterinarian

               Clear medicine bottle with printed L. P. Hurley label –
                            Handwritten: “… spoon … three times [a] day …”

[Hopewell Herald, July 12, 1882]

Dr. Lewis P . Hurley was a veterinarian in Hopewell from around the 1880s through the 1910s, originally at 51 North Greenwood Avenue across from Hart Avenue, and then at 23-25 West Broad. His son, J. Arthur Hurley, was also a veterinarian who assisted with the practice. Hurley was elected President of the Veterinary Medical Association of New Jersey.

Medicine Bottles – George E. Pierson, Druggist

              Brown medicine bottle with cork stopper and printed label –
                            “Oil of Tar / George E. Pierson / Druggist / Hopewell N. J.”
              Clear medicine bottle with embossed lettering – “Geo. E. Pierson / Hopewell N. J.”

[Hopewell Herald, June 9, 1909]

George E. Pierson ran the Rexall Drug Store from around the 1890s through the early 1920s at 1 West Broad Street, which has continued as a drug store through the current Hopewell Pharmacy. In 1910, his store was one of only two locations in the borough that had a pay telephone station.

The brown “Oil of Tar” medicine bottle is a well-known design apparently used by many druggists, with an embossed giraffe’s neck image on the back, and the sides embossed “Tonsiline” / “For Sore Throat.”

Medicine Bottle – J. Thomas Gandy, Druggist

                Clear medicine bottle with printed J. Thos. Gandy label –
                                “Spirits of Nitre / .. Take and repeat every 3 or 4 hours. – U. S. D.”

[Hopewell Herald, Nov. 15, 1922]

J. Thomas Gandy had a drug store in the 1880s at what is now the entrance of South Greenwood Avenue off Broad Street, before Greenwood was extended from Broad towards Columbia. The building and its neighbors were destroyed in the Behre’s Hall fire in 1893.

Historical Discoveries

These are just a few examples of the kind of discoveries that are still to be found around local attics and cellars. So please do keep an eye out for these kinds of artifacts and materials, so we can digitize and share them for all on the History Project site. If appropriate, we also can help pass them on to the Hopewell Museum or the Hopewell Valley Historic Society to be archived and preserved.

See the bottom of the page for contact information.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: