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Longtime Mamaroneck Residents Recall Village's Past

Longtime village of Mamaroneck resident, Joe Germano, left, and Mayor Norm Rosenblum shared insight into the village's history.
Longtime village of Mamaroneck resident, Joe Germano, left, and Mayor Norm Rosenblum shared insight into the village's history. Photo Credit: John Gitlitz

MAMARONECK -- “The key to the success of the village of Mamaroneck ... is that its character has remained the same,” asserted Mayor Norm Rosenblum at the Larchmont-Mamaroneck Local Summit’s monthly meeting on April 17.

He noted that the village of Mamaroneck – with a population of just under 20,000 – ranked 60th in CNN Money magazine’s 2011 list of the 100 best small towns to live in the U.S.

Leading off the Local Summit’s planned series on “The Changing Face of our Community,” two lifelong Mamaroneck village residents, Rosenblum and unofficial village historian Joe Germano, reminisced about how the village has changed over time, yet stayed the same.

Both men and their families have contributed to the village’s long and rich history. Rosenblum’s grandfather – a painting and general contractor – came to Mamaroneck in 1904; he built the first apartment buildings in the village and constructed many of the buildings that are still part of the village today, including the building occupied by Molly Spillane’s.

Germano, who was born in the village in 1925 and was in the Marine Corps in World War II, was an important figure in the village’s history. He owned and operated Mamaroneck Garage, one of the largest enterprises on Mamaroneck Avenue, and was known for providing opportunities for Mamaroneck High School students.

Rosenblum and Germano spoke of the many businesses, large and small, that were important employers in the 1900s, such as Technical Material Corp., where Majestic Kitchen and Toyota now are located; Selectro, which operated two to three shifts in its heyday; Pure Foods; and Schaefer Beer.

The two men recalled the days when fairgrounds occupied the space where the Sarah Neuman Center now stands; when there was a friendly neighborhood rivalry between the “Flats” and the “Strawberry Patch;" and when filmmaker D.W. Griffith’s studio on Orienta Point made Mamaroneck one of the birthplaces of the American film industry.

?This breakfast forum was hosted by The Larchmont-Mamaroneck Local Summit. Its monthly public meetings are held at the Nautilus Diner in Mamaroneck at 7:45 a.m. usually on the third Tuesday of the month. The next meeting will take place Tuesday, May 19, and the topic will be health programs in the community.

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