Mrs. Alice Cook Costello’s donated photos chronicle dad’s construction of Riverton’s War Memorial

Riverton’s War Memorial c.1946

The September 2010 issue of the Gaslight News acknowledged the gift last May by Mrs. Alice Cook Costello, now living in Burlington, of more than a dozen family photos showing the construction of Riverton’s War Memorial. Newsletter space only permitted the publication of one picture, but now, if you have the time, we have the real estate here to display most of them.

Letter from Mrs. Cook dated May 24, 2010

In a letter that she included with the donated photos, Mrs. Costello wrote that her father, Mr. William W. Cook,“spent many hours in the planning and the construction” (of the monument).

Mr. William Harris of Cinnaminson Street, who passed away last December, recalled his time as a ten-year-old boy running errands for the men working and of Mr. Cook‟s enthusiasm for the project.

William Henry Harris

When it was time for lunch they sent William to Karl Frank’s store (now Cioci’s Deli) to buy ½ lb. bologna, ½ lb. cheese, and a loaf of Bond bread from which they made their sandwiches. William reported that when the concrete foundation was poured, Mr. Cook took a penny from his pocket and threw it in for good luck.

In this sequence of photos, which Mrs. Costello dates as about 1945-1946, we see the transformation of that empty lot into what would become an enduring reminder of the service of men and women of Riverton who served their country in time of war.

Readers, please know how much that the HSR appreciates and values the donation of unique primary source historical material by generous and community-minded persons such as Mrs. Costello. No less valuable are the recollections, oral histories, and personal stories of those who came before which can add immeasurably to the historical record.

Please help us in our mission to discover, restore, and preserve local history of all manner and size, and consider donating items (or allowing them to be scanned or photographed) and documenting your “Riverton” story.

We’re here to help you tell it. – John McCormick, Gaslight News Editor



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John McCormick

Teacher at Riverton School 1974-2019, author, amateur historian, Historical Society of Riverton Board Member 2007-2023, newsletter editor 2007-2023, website editor 2011-2023

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