You can visit the creek where Pugsley Addams got his name
Fans of The Addams Family, put Pugsley Creek Park on the map!
When The Addams Family creator Charles Addams was finally coming up with names for the TV versions of his illustrated comic characters (they went unnamed in the print version), he didn't have a specific method.
To him, "Gomez" just sounded right, while "Morticia" was found in the phone book, when it occurred to him to drop the "ns" off "morticians."
But for Pugsley, Charles Addams eschewed flipping through the Yellow Pages, and instead found inspiration surveying an old map.
"I found Pugsley — the son — one day when I was looking at an old map of the Bronx," Addams told The Baltimore Sun in 1965. "It is, or was, a creek."
Today, Pugsley Creek Park still exists with the same name in the Bronx.
According to NYCGovParks, Pugsley Creek Park officially took on its name in 1987, after which a constant flow of improvements and clean-ups were held to keep the park as a spot worth visiting.
Pugsley Creek flows into the Bronx from the East River, and only extends into land as far as the park stretches.
That means if you visit today, you can walk 83 acres of nature while strolling along the entirety of the creek that inspired Charles Addams to give Pugsley his name.
On The Addams Family, Ken Weatherwax's portrayal of Pugsley alongside Lisa Loring as his sister Wednesday became so memorable that fans inquired for decades about what happened to the child stars.
While Loring eventually acted again, Weatherwax quit acting after the show ended. In 1966, the episode "Lurch's Little Helper" — which memorably featured Robby the Robot as "Smiley" — became the last time the TV siblings appeared side-by-side on the show.
Because Weatherwax was so under the radar, rumors abounded regarding his whereabouts. One rumor was even pushed by The Munsters star Butch Patrick in an interview with The Austin American-Statesman in 1987.
"I heard the actor who played Pugsley is now a big biker covered with tattoos," Patrick said. "I'd better stop making fun of him, or one day he'll give me some serious Pugsley noogies."
Eventually, documentarians of The Addams Family history tracked down Weatherwax and discovered he had become a camera grip, enjoying work behind the scenes of film productions.
Charles Addams always thought it was amusing how much children loved watching The Addams Family, claiming the campy sitcom and its deadpan siblings almost turned him into a TV fan, too.
"I think that our family is less scary than the others — they are sort of cozy monsters," Addams said. "Anyway, children seem to love them and laugh at them."
Behind the scenes, Weatherwax and Loring didn't always understand what made the show so funny, and Loring told The Belleville News-Democrat that instead of horsing around backstage, she and Weatherwax often fought as actual brothers and sisters would.
Weatherwax, who rarely gave interviews, told The Baltimore Sun in 2006 that it was probably better that they had this backstage aggression and not much understanding of the show’s more adult humor.
"At the time, being a kid, we didn't understand a lot of the jokes," Weatherwax said. "We would just do our dialogue and play it straight — that's the way they wanted it done. Now we understand why a lot of that worked."