Teaneck Park Renamed

Dated August 4, 1976

Source Unidentified (from Teaneck Public Library files)

TEANECK -Everybody was happy, finally, as plans to rename a park in honor of Dr. Barnett S. Bookstaver, a former health officer and philanthropist, became a reality.

Original proposals to rename Sagamore Park were summarily rejected by Mayor Eleanor Kieliszek, who said she didn't want to offend American Indians by removing an Indian name - Sagamore is the Delaware term for Chief -- from a Teaneck park.

She sugested that Station Park, near Sagamore Park, be renamed instead. This suited Joy Appelbaum, who had led the group proposing the name change, and last night it became official.

Mrs. Appelbaum fended off a last minute alternative proposition.

"Dr. Bookstaver certainly deserves this type of recognition but perhaps in line with his interest in community service, it might be better to name the [proposed] community center after him," said Councilman Max Hasse at Monday''s work session, when the details were being worked out.

"I'll settle for a park in the hand instead of a community center in abeyance," said Mrs. Appelbaum.

Dr. Bookstaver, born in Russia, came to America as a child and was educated in New York City. He was head of the Teaneck Board of Health, was police surgeon and fire department surgeon, was with the Board of Education medical office from 1933 to 1951 on a $1-a-year basis.

A founder of the Volunteer Ambulance Corps, he was also an enthusiastic fund-raiser for both Jewish and Christian activities. He died of a heart attack in 1961 after helping to, rescue nuns and children from the fire which devastated the old St. Anastasials R.C. School.


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