Camden, NJ

Seward Street

SIMMONS COURT is another one of Camden's "lost streets".  At some point prior to 1863, Henry Simmons, who is described in that year's Camden City Directories as "colored" and whose occupation was given as "seaman", acquired a parcel of land consisting of the three lots that would have comprised 240, 242, and 244 Division Street. He appears to have been the son of Samuel and Hester Simmons, and was born in Delaware around 1837. Given his age it is quite possible that his father developed Simmons Court. A Samuel R. Simmons who was a member of the Newton Meeting of Quakers passed away in 1861, and Hester Simmons, widow, is mentioned as living on Simmons Court from 1865 through 1870. 

Six frame houses were erected on Simmons Court, one of which was still standing and occupied when the Census was taken in 1880. As indicated above, Simmons Court is mentioned in the 1863 Camden City Directory, and there are listings for residents on Simmons Court as late as 1877. There are no listings in the 1878 Directory or any thereafter. According to the 1880 Census, there was one household on Simmons Court in the 1880 Census, that of Henry Simmons. The 1883 City Directory does not refer to Simmons Court, but does show Henry Simmons living at 244 Division Street. Henry Simmons, last a resident of 232 Spruce Street, died on June 9, 1887 at he age of 50. He was buried at Johnson's Cemetery in what was then the town of Stockton, present-day East Camden.  

The 1885 Sanborn Map set for Camden does not have a map for the block of Division Street where Simmons Court had once stood. The 1891 edition however, does, and shows no structures on the parcel of land that made up 240, 242, and 244 Division Street. It can be safely assumed that the last house on Simmons Court fell to fire or was razed in the mid-1880s. 

Do you have a Simmons Court memory or picture. Let me know by e-mail so it can be included here.

 Phil Cohen

West Jersey Press -  September 2, 1874

1891 Sanborn Map of Camden

800 Block of Simmons Court
  805 Simmons Court

Israel Coatney aka Israel Cakeny
hod carrier

  807 Simmons Court

1870 George Johnson
1870 George Etlen


  809 Simmons Court

1869 Julia Wilson
1874 Elizabeth Burtts


  811 Simmons Court

1865 William Polk aka William Polke
1869 Samuel Draper
1869 Eliza Dunham
1870 Steven Harding
1874 Jane Green
1877 Henry Simmons


  813 Simmons Court

1863-1865 Henry Simmons

Mrs. Hester Stevens
widow, died January 24, 1877

1865 William Polk aka William Polke

1874 Fannie Jordan
1874 Isaiah Jordan

1877 John Simmons

  814 Simmons Court
(most likely a typographical error,
this was probably 813 Simmons Court)

1870 William Polk aka William Polke
1870 Mrs. Hester Simmons

  815 Simmons Court

1869-1870 William Nicholas
1870 Elizabeth Brown