Friday Flashback #270

If you’ve ever …

  • Spent 20 minutes crawling from I-95 exit 17 to the Cribari Bridge, on traffic-filled Charles Street and Riverside Avenue
  • Spent 20 minutes trying to decide where to have dinner in Saugatuck: Rizzuto’s? Tutti’s? Harvest? Tarantino’s? Romanacci’s? Viva? Bistro du Soleil? The Whelk? Or a dozen or so others?
  • Rented a kayak, bought some ice cream or fresh bread, or visited another local merchant near the river
  • Taken a train to or from New York, or picked up or dropped off someone at the station
  • Looked at the concrete 4-story office building across from Luciano Park and thought, how the hell did this ever get built here?

… then you’ll be amazed by this week’s Friday Flashback.

It shows a Saugatuck we can’t even imagine.

Long before I-95 slashed through; before the Italians made the community their own; before, even, the factories and wharves along the river hummed with activities, this was what Saugatuck looked like.


Postcards have been known to stretch the truth.

But this Saugatuck scene looks nice — wherever it was.

Meanwhile, if you think you can identify the spot where these cows grazed, click “Comments” below.

Or just add your own Saugatuck memory.

22 responses to “Friday Flashback #270

  1. Considering the hills in the background, my guess would be along where I95 is now looking North

  2. ill go with Saugatuck ave , looking over the harbor to the east bank of the River entrance.

  3. Celeste Champagne

    What year would this have been??

  4. Sherwood Island

  5. Definitely off of Imperial Ave maybe where the commuter lot is! lol

  6. My Saugatuck memories are primarily of the toll. It was east of Exit 17, wasn’t it? We often took back roads to or from Greens Farms to save that quarter. I know the tolls were removed after a terrible accident at the booths in Meriden(?). Does anyone remember the year?

  7. Dan is right in saying that “postcards have been known to stretch the truth.” It wasn’t entirely dishonest but postcard makers often used a scene that could be anywhere for different towns. I collected postcards years ago and remember examples like this. This picture is probably not Saugatuck.

  8. In this view, there’s an interesting, narrow spit of land that inserts itself into the river. Perhaps this feature no longer exists at all, but one of the few places on the river that still has an existing, narrow spit on the river is about halfway down Stony Point Rd (an area definitely qualifying as Saugatuck). Across the river would be elevated hills by Waterside Terrace and then further beyond them would be Compo Hill. Just guessing on my part.

    • That looks like it could be the area of the park across from Raymond place and cherry lane on riverside avenue right before rive bistro.
      There are old pillars by Raymond place and the back of birch wood and I believe there was a farm of some sort there at one point.

      And if only it was still only 20 minutes, that’s on a good day mid morning.
      It now takes about an hour to get from Saugatuck across the post road..

  9. Usually when you see cows there’s a farm nearby. The nearest dairy farm was the Clover Dairy in Norwalk in the 1920s, later to become Stew Leonards. Note that the postcard doesn’t SAY where the view is – it just says “Greetings From Saugatuck.” So the picture is probably a generic view and could be hundreds of miles away. If you got it in the mail the important thing was the message that someone wrote to you.

  10. Sylvia Robinson Corrigan

    When I was a young girl, there were still cows grazing on the hill at Nyala Farms. In this case, I think the postcard maker meant somewhere in the Saugatuck area, since the person said “Saugatuck.” Farms – and I am sure there were quite a few, disappear quickly and without a trace when other things take over. There is a marshy area towards the back of the picture, and fields in front. My imagination takes me to look toward I-95 at Exit 17, and over toward the train station, where a house stands in the wetland area, where I believe there are marshes.


  12. Based on the view in the distance, I’d say it’s East of 136 / Saugatuck Ave around Judy Point, maybe just south of Burritts Landing.

  13. I’d say Burritts Landing

  14. That card looks like it was made by the NYCE Manufacturing Company of Vernfield, PA.
    They had a post card product line called NYCE Quality Colored Landscape Locals.
    Cows and Farm Scenes No. 943 twenty designs.
    “All scenes appropriate for any locality.”

  15. This Greetings Card Dan posted is from my collection and I would agree with Peter and others, this scene is likely not of Saugatuck. And……. Harris is correct, on the back of the card it reads, “NYCE, Quality Colored Landscape Locals’. The card was never sent or written on but guessing it dates back to 1920-30’s.

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