The Culper Spy Ring has taken hold of the public imagination in recent years. From the work of historian Alexander Rose to the AMC series Turn, this story of a tight-knit group of Long Island natives spying for George Washington during the Revolution provides a compelling narrative.
On the latest episode of the Long Island History Project, we take a closer look at the primary sources that help document the Culper story. Kristen Nyitray, Director of Special Collections and University Archives at Stony Brook University, and Chris Filstrup, former Dean of SBU Libraries, discuss their pursuit and acquisition of two letters by George Washington to Benjamin Tallmadge about the operations of the spy ring. We also discus how the letters helped form closer ties among community groups involved in interpreting and promoting this fascinating aspect of Long Island history. Continue reading
In 1960s Sayville, Long Island, no woman editor had ever run the hometown paper.
Then Mary Lou Cohalan and her friend Joann O’Doherty took over the Suffolk County News.
What followed was a crash course in journalism, politics, and crisis management set against the Vietnam War and the rapidly expanding suburbs in the town of Islip. Continue reading
A tour of the Vander-Ende – Onderdonk House and a lecture by archeologist and historic preservation specialist Alyssa Loorya, President of Chrysalis Archeology, has been set for Thursday, May 10, 2018 from 5 to 7 pm. Continue reading
The restoration of the Red Creek Schoolhouse on the grounds of the Rogers Mansion Museum Complex, a property of the Southampton History Museum, is set to be celebrated on Saturday, May 5 from 2 to 4 pm.
Built in the mid-19th century, perhaps as early as 1830, it is a rare surviving one-room schoolhouse in the Town of Southampton, Long Island.
The restoration, made possible by a $50,500 matching grant from the Robert David Lion Gardiner Foundation, was carried out by carpenter Nathan Tuttle. Continue reading
Everyone loves their hometown but Chris Bodkin, who grew up in Sayville, Long Island, in the 1950s and 60s, has a truly deep connection to this South Shore community.
Whether working in a boatyard, on a Fire Island ferry or as a local politician, Chris was in tune with his surroundings. So much so that we broke his interview into three chapters: the Book of Sayville.
You’ll hear about Sayville in the Depression, post-World War II, and into the 1970s. Along the way you’ll meet veterans, immigrants, French bakers, Hungarian dentists, and all the unique characters that contributed to one man’s history. Continue reading
A Genealogy Workshop has been set for Saturday, April 7, from 10 am to noon at Rogers Mansion, 17 Meeting House Lane, Southampton, Long Island.
This free genealogical workshop will help attendees learn about their history. There will be lineage research helpers present to assist in searches. Light refreshments will be served. Continue reading
A hands-on local redware and stoneware pottery workshop, led by pottery expert Anthony Butera Jr. and Preservation Long Island curator Lauren Brincat, has been set for Saturday, March 10th in Cold Spring Harbor, NY.
This workshop will focus on the history of an industry that flourished on Long Island during the 1800s, and will give attendees an opportunity to closely examine ceramics in the collection of Preservation Long Island. Continue reading
Henry Livingston came to Babylon in 1869 and founded the South Shore Signal. He made an immediate splash advocating for Babylon to split from the town of Huntington and went on to lead the newspaper into the 20th century.
On this episode of The Long Island History Project, Babylon Town Historian Mary Cascone relates the history of the paper: it’s influence, evolution, and style. We also trade stories of newspaper research, microfilm readers, and the glory of digitized collections. Luckily, the South Shore Signal has gone to newspaper heaven and can now be fully searched through the New York State Historic Newspapers site. Continue reading
What can bottles teach us about history? Mark R. Smith’s antique bottle collection preserves the memory of once-ubiquitous dairies, downtown pharmacies, and long-forgotten resort hotels.
On this episode of The Long Island History Projet, Mark fills us in: where to dig for bottles, what the labels tell us, and how to research what you find.
Listen to the podcast here. Continue reading
Newsday has helped shape the development of Nassau and Suffolk counties since its first edition rolled off the presses in 1940. And it never would have happened without the unique marriage of Alicia Patterson and Harry Guggenheim.
Learn the backstory of Long Island’s paper of record, as told by former Newsday reporter Bob Keeler. Bob spent years researching the lives of Alicia, Harry, Bill Moyers, and all those involved in Newsday‘s first half-century.
His book Newsday: A Candid History of the Respectable Tabloid, published in 1990, is required reading for anyone interested in Long Island, journalism, and post-WWII politics. Continue reading