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A streetcar zips through the heart of Trenton. Pedestrians wearing top hats and long coats cross the road. State Street was home to an abundance of bustling storefronts, like Kitty Kelly (women’s shoes) and J.B. Wilson Millinery Co. (women’s hats), Liggetts Drug Store, Glitsky Dentist Office, Savoy Restaurant, Sylvia Drape Shop, John Lini Beauty Salon, to name a few.

Frederick William Donnelly owned a successful men’s clothing store on State Street called F.W. Donnelly & Son. In 1911, he became mayor of Trenton and handed over the clothing business to his son. When his son passed away in 1931, he resigned and resumed responsibility of the company.

One billboard advertised is Tattersall’s Coal, a Trenton-based company that started in 1894. By 1911, Tattersall’s Coal held a contract with Trenton Public Schools and was used by one out of every five Trentonians, making Tattersall’s Coal very profitable. The company invested nearly $40,000 (about $1 million in today’s money) to build two large coal plants in Trenton (one was located downtown).

The intersection of State and Broad Streets remains an important location and transit hub in Downtown Trenton.  While the businesses from 1930s Trenton have moved on, many buildings in this area are still intact. Trenton’s first City Hall, a three-story building constructed in 1837, is still standing on the corner of State & Broad (located out-of-frame in the Northeast corner) and currently used as office and commercial space.


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