Tag Archives: Henry Krajewski

Artist Paints Mural on Charlie’s Corner Building

Charlie's Corner Mural Secaucus

Artist Lunar New Year painted a large mural honoring Henry Krajewski on the side of the Charlie’s Corner facing Wilson Avenue over the weekend.

Krajewski is one of Secaucus’ first national figures. The owner of a 4,000-pig farm in town, he ran for the United States Presidency in 1952 and 1956 and for the New Jersey Governorship three times (1953, 1957 and 1961).

The mural features a portrait of Krajewski with a depiction of New Jersey landscapes behind and an American Redstart bird in the upper lefthand corner (see below for artist’s meaning).

Charlie’s Corner, located at 1254 Paterson Plank Road, has been a town staple for years and remains owned by Henry’s descendants.

Lunar New Year works out of Newark and, according to his website, is an “educator, organizer and public speaker for such projects as Young New Yorkers in Brooklyn, Yollocalli Arts Reach in Chicago and City Without Walls in Newark.”

The artists posted the following message on his Instagram account regarding the work:

“Average Populous” a mural made in collaboration with @savage_habbit for their new series of projects in #Secaucus #NJ – the piece’s center protagonist is Henry B. Krajewski: an American politician who ran for the United States Presidency in 1952 and in 1956 for the “Poor Man’s Party” and who, having a background as a pig farmer, ran under the promise of “no piggy deals in Washington.” This form of blue collar affinity led him to create an image of the “Average American” and to represent this ideal as a tall, hard working, pig farmer turned politician. I find this sentiment very New Jersey: always relegated as the armpit of the USA, NJ seems to only nurture fighters and a strong suburban middle class. This is the case for #Secaucus today with its industrial history, commercial arteries, natural marshes and wetlands. The American Redstart bird signifies this perennial back and forth of economy as a migratory big that changes its name to “candelita” or little torch when it winters in South America. The last element is a reimagining of the #Prudential company’s Logo, which was inspired by #SnakeHill in the southern most part of the town.

 

Secaucus’ Swinish Past

The Meadowlands History blog delved into Secaucus’ historical “penchant for pigs” at one point counting 250,000 of the animals on 55 farms in town.

Pig farmers wielded significant political power in town and, of course, Charlie Krajewski’s presidential bids in the 1950s underscored the view of Secaucus as a swine-friendly.

“In those days, cars didn’t have air-conditioning, and it didn’t matter how hot or humid it was – we weren’t about to roll down our windows,” said Rich Fritzky, a Hackensack native whose family made many trips through the Meadowlands in the 1950s and early 1960s.

To those who moved into town more recently, read more about the pig farm past and what happened to the thousands of pigs here.