January 29, 1994 |
William J. Levitt, 86, whose mass-produced homes met the needs of World War II GIs and created the modern American suburb, died yesterday at North Shore University Hospital, in Manhasset, Long Island, N.Y. In the two decades following the opening of Levittown, Long Island, in 1947, Mr. Levitt was responsible for building more than 75,000 single-family homes. The developments were in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Florida, as well as Long Island. He developed Levittown in Bucks County in 1951 and what is now Willingboro, N.J., in 1958.
May 6, 1996 |
Hanging in a corner of the meeting room in the new Levittown Regional Library is a modest-size picture of an elderly man in a white linen jacket standing before a small, Cape Cod-style home. But to hear longtime residents and family members who gathered yesterday to dedicate the meeting room in William J. Levitt's memory, the developer's impact was far from modest. "He wasn't just building a little business that could go away tomorrow," said Simone Levitt, widow of the New York-based developer and suburban pioneer.
January 1, 1995
Ralph Ellison; Noted novelist Burt Lancaster; Movie great Jacqueline Onassis; Former first lady Thomas P. "Tip"O'Neill; Former speaker Hugh Scott; Political giant Jessica Tandy; Stage, film star John Candy; Lovable actor Kurt Cobain; Nirvana singer John Wayne Gacy; Serial killer William J. Levitt; Visionary builder Henry Mancini; Pop composer Rollo May; Psychologist Linus Pauling; Nobel laureate...
January 8, 2000 |
Philomena E. Christopher Dougherty, 80, a homemaker whose family members were the first non-Levitt employees to reside in Levittown, Bucks County, died Wednesday at her home in New Hope. "She and my father and the children were the first [non-Levitt employee] family to move into Levittown in June 1952," said her daughter Rita K. Calzerette. Levittown developer William Levitt "chose them as the all-American family and over the years she was presented with roses and was present at most ribbon-cutting ceremonies celebrating Levitt grand openings.
June 12, 1994 |
Don Sebastian likes to do the backstroke. Ten-year-old Ashley Burgoon prefers a lively game of Marco Polo. And Jim Bramley just likes to bake in the sun. Whatever their preference, it's all taking place at the municipal pool - a relatively cheap and convenient place to get wet. The problem is, in South Jersey you might have to look pretty hard to find one. In Camden, Burlington and Gloucester Counties, just 10 outdoor public...
April 23, 1995 |
A movement is afoot to rename the Levittown branch of the Bucks County Free Library after visionary developer William J. Levitt when it moves into a new building in the fall. Hal Lefcourt, a longtime Levittown supporter, has already broached the subject with the county commissioners, who were lukewarm to the idea. He plans to ask the four municipalities of Levittown - Bristol, Falls and Middletown Townships and Tullytown - to join the effort. The new library will be on New Falls Road, in the heart of Levittown.
February 20, 1998 |
To hear it from die-hard Levittown pool users, the Levittown Public Recreation Association blew it through a lack of communication and creativity. To hear it from recreation association officials, a shift in demographics and societal values is to blame for the death of five neighborhood pools that the association had run in Levittown for 45 years. About 75 residents from across Levittown packed a Wednesday night meeting in Falls to discuss the recreation association's recent announcement that it had permanently closed all but one of its recreational facilities sprinkled in William Levitt's 17,311-home community.
March 12, 1998 |
The Board of Supervisors is seeking an interest-free loan from the county to buy the Forsythia Crossing community pool property. The board voted, 5-0, Tuesday to seek a $156,000, 10-year loan to buy the property. They also agreed to spend $3,500 on an environmental survey of the parcel and an appraisal of the land. The 10-acre parcel contains one of five pools owned by the Levittown Public Recreation Association (LPRA). The association announced it would permanently shut down the pools and baseball fields a month ago because they had become too expensive to keep open.
June 7, 1995 |
Car kingpin Victor Potamkin, the former South Philadelphia fish truck driver who became the world's most successful Cadillac salesman, died Monday in Miami. He was the 83-year-old patriarch of one of America's largest auto megadealers, with showrooms in five states. His roots were humble. He drove a truck for his father's fish market at 4th and Christian streets, then peddled cut chickens in Camden. But he worked his way to the billionaire stratosphere, where he could rub shoulders with corporate titans like Lee Iacocca and William Levitt, mayors of Philadelphia and New York, judges on the federal and state benches, and regular people who wanted to buy a Chevy or Toyota.
October 16, 1998 |
Ralph Bodek, 84, a real estate developer who built more than 6,000 homes in the Philadelphia suburbs, including the Lawrence Park community in Delaware County, died of lung cancer Saturday at the Ardmore home of one of his daughters. He had lived in retirement in Miami for the last 20 years. Mr. Bodek once said he was fascinated by the production-line concept of building homes to attract buyers from the city and meet rising demands of returning veterans. He borrowed and refined the idea from William Levitt, builder of Levittown in Bucks County.