Lillian Street Views.
Lillian Street in the middle
of Warren Township was farmers field until the late 1930s when the area was
subdivided. Gradually people bought lots and built houses. The Warren
Township hall was built nearby and torn down in the late 1950s. The State
police had their post in the big house at the end of Patomic in southern Center
Line. This nice old man gave me these fotos which tell the story of the street.
I still need to do a little more research to fill in some details.
After losing a house in the
depression the man had finally found work and saved his money to
buy a lot. The depression was veryrough. People did without much even
food at times. He built the house himself by hand about 1942.
No power tools. It was very sturdy. He and his wife lived in parts of the house
as it was being built one room at a time. Other people on the street did the
same. Some had a basement dug then built the pre floor and covered it with
tar paper. They lived in the basement worked and when they had enough
money they put up a house frame, then roof, enclosed it. and lived in it while
finishing one room at a time. They kept gardens. They canned a lot
which was time consuming but there was food available during the winter and
during times of lean income. Some houses were made partly of scrap
lumber. Many families kept chickens and rabbits for food. There was
no complaint from the neighbors as sometimes they were invited over for
dinner. After the old man died his family lived in it until the 1980s when
it was sold to the city nice lot and all for $5,000. The City demolished
the old house in order to update the lot with a brick house with basement.
Beautiful elm trees had been
planted and provided shade for residents. The streed was csushed stone hard
packed and treated with someting in the summer to keep the dust down. All
in all it was a very peaceful environment. A road grader would come by in
the spring and level the rough spots.