Incredible images of Union City, NJ monastery fire from 1934
As anyone who knows me knows I was raised in Union City and couldn't be prouder of it. To this day, whenever I perform standup comedy and talk about where I grew up, someone will come up to me after the show asking "What Street?" and "Do you know so and so?" I pretty much did.
So, when I saw the video of Dez Manku's song "Union City" written by Mike Boldt and Phil Gallo that contained all these great pictures, I wanted more.
If you grew up in Union City or know anyone who does, check out these memories.
This was probably before your time. Like many Italian, Irish, German, and Hispanic American children, I made my confirmation at St. Michael's Monastery. We always used to hear about the big fire that destroyed the monastery back in the day. That day was May 31, 1934.
Some background on St. Michael's from the hudsonreporter.com:
"St. Michael’s was built in 1864 by a group of Passionists, a Roman Catholic religious order founded by St. Paul of the Cross. The Passionists in Union City (then West Hoboken) were led by Bishop James R. Bayley of Newark. The congregation thrived until a fire ravaged the church in 1934, completely burning down its domed section".
Check out these shots.
St. Michaels Monastery was repaired, rebuilt and resurrected in 1935 and continued to serve the community until it was shut down in 1981 due to financial hardship.
In 1984 the church was purchased at a minimal price from the Passionists by the Korean community and now belongs to the Korean Presbyterian Church.
As for the land we used to sneak in to play on, much of it has been used as playing fields for the youth of Union City, of which I was proud to be one.
Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Steve Trevelise only. Follow him on Twitter @realstevetrev.
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