From the Jersey Journal: Tuesday, October 4, 1955.
St. Matthew's Steeple Doomed - Storm-Shaken Landmark Coming Down
"The big job of removing a 163-food Jersey City church steeple moved ahead today with work expected to be completed by the end of the month.
The removal of the storm-wrecked steeple of St. Matthew's Evangelical Lutheran Church, 83 [sic] Wayne St., Jersey City, began last Wednesday with contractors working from within removing the structure brick by brick, according to the Rev. Arthur Posselt, pastor of the church.
AREA ROPED OFF
The steeple was declared unsafe and the area was roped off by police when its slate covering began to fall to the ground following hurricane winds during August and early September.
One piece of slate struck and injured a passerby, making it an absolute necessity to do something about the weakened steeple, the Rev. Mr. Posselt said.
Attempts to work out a way to repair and save the towering steeple, which had become a landmark over the last 58 years in downtown Jersey City, failed when contractors couldn't guarantee their work, the pastor said.
IN HURRICANE BELT
"We hate to see it go but all contractors agree this area seems to be coming into the hurricane belt and removal would be the best bet," he said.
"We ought to have quite a nice looking church by early next year when our congregation celebrates its 95th year," the Rev. Mr. Posselt said.
The photo caption reads: "HAZARD REMOVAL" - The 163-food steeple of St. Matthew's Lutheran Church at 83 [sic] Wayne St., Jersey City, made unsafe by hurricanes and storms, is razed. Contractors expect the work to be completed by end of month. Police had to rope off street to protect pedestrians from falling shingles.