Looking as I do at two totally different things and finding a thought, I have decided that 1961 A.D., C.E. was the first year in the Age of the Secular in the Eastern United States.
I remember the beginning date/year of the Cherry Hill Mall in New Jersey. I visited there as a child on a Sunday no less, but after church. Cannot remember if the mall had officially opened yet or it was gearing up in its final stages of preparation.
It still had work to do on odds and ends of its interior. I remember plastic covers on a window of an unfinished store. One of the big anchor stores was Strawbridge and Clothier, stalwart pillar of the age old “carriage trade” in Philadelphia, where my aunt worked.
It would have been all grand to visit inside these stores but it was Sunday and no business was allowed as I remember in this new mall on this sacred Christian day.
That must have been the last time the stores in a Mall in America were closed on what is now considered a busy premier, weekend secular sales day – Sunday.
Cherry Hill Mall
Cherry Hill Mall opened on October 11, 1961. At the time, it was the largest mall in the nation and the first enclosed, climate-controlled mall in the Eastern United States.People were strolling about looking at the new stores and the idea of an enclosed shopping space connecting stores simply fascinated everyone. The one lively thing in the whole open, not for sales, interior space was a huge Parrot in its giant cage on the walkway, sitting as something of a pet, showpiece or simply living piece of art and chewing on sunflower seeds. Rather a dull bird, white and gray, and limited language. Cutting edge entertainment at the time.
Funny how memory roles out in time.
The date of the Age of Secular depends on different people and different geographic places but my suggested start date on a timeline is 1961 – First Year A.S. - (zero) 0 A.S..
I cross reference this with the then in progress or upcoming Vatican Council around 1961. The Church was going one way and the rest of the capitalist world was headed into an entirely different direction. Bad/Good timing?