The Town of Islip and the Great South Bay

Great South Bay, Heckscher State Park (July 26, 2012)
Great South Bay, Heckscher State Park (July 26, 2012)

The town of Islip in Suffolk County, New York, is an excellent example of modern-day suburbia.  Bordering Long Island’s Great South Bay, the town is accessible by commuter railroad and features a beautiful waterfront location for fishing, boating, surfing, and bathing.  While most residents live year-round, at one time Islip was a resort location that many wealthy residents of the cities of New York and Brooklyn called their summer residence.  The following discusses the evolution of the Great South Bay area of Islip township from a nineteenth century resort community to a twenty-first century suburb to New York City.  Several recent images highlight the natural wonder of the bay area and the landscape of the sandy terrain.

The Beginning of Islip Settlements

In 1633, colonization began in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Eastern Long Island.[1]  The first English settlers on Long Island were parishioners who found either religious demands under England’s King Charles unacceptable or Massachusetts’s Orthodox Puritanism intolerable.[2]  Since the sea was the only means of communication with England, Gardiner’s Island, Southold, Southampton and East Hampton were the early English establishments on Long Island.  The western end of Long Island and Manhattan was settled by the Dutch who established trading posts with the Indians, the chief of which was at New Amsterdam.  In 1664, the English seized control of New Amsterdam and renamed it New York, after James, the Duke of York.  In a desire to secure possession of his territory from Dutch Governor Peter Stuyvesant, the Duke commissioned an expedition to America.[3]  Secretary of this contingent was Matthias Nicholl.  Born in 1621, Matthias hailed from Islip, Northamptonshire, England and went to Cambridge University.[4]  In light of his legal training, he was assigned to delegate the laws for the province in 1665, known as the “Duke’s Laws,” under Governor Richard Nicholl.  Matthias was later appointed Mayor of New York City in 1671 and a judge of the New York Supreme Court.[5]

Seeking a location not already colonized, Matthias Nicholl acquired a large estate on Cow’s Neck, Manhasset, for his family, who became residents of New York.  His son William played an important role in the development of the town of Islip.  William, also known as the Islip Patentee and the Father of Islip, was born in 1657 and arrived in New York at the age of seven.  He returned to England to be educated for the New York bar in 1677 and served for a time in the Army at Flanders.  At age twenty-six he began a career in law and public service as the Clerk of Queens County, a position he held until 1688.  Other offices held included Registrar of the Court of Admiralty in New York, Attorney General, member of the Governor’s Council, and member of the General Assembly of Suffolk County.[6]

In 1683, William Nicholl began to acquire large tracts of land along the Great South Bay and called it Islip after the English town of his birth.[7]  His first patent was granted by Governor Dongan in 1684.  Two more patents, in 1686 and 1697 respectively, followed and the total land exceeded 50,000 acres, from present day East Islip to Bayport.  Land was accumulated from the Secatogue Indians.[8]  At the time of European colonization, thirteen principle tribes inhabited Long Island.  The Secatogue adjoined the Massapequa Indians on the west and possessed land as far east as modern Patchogue.  Chiefs and head men, called sachems and sagamores, governed public affairs, treaties, and payment of tribute.  English and Dutch settlers typically purchased land from the chiefs.[9]

William Nicholl’s patented land included the present hamlet of Islip and was called the Islip Grange.  Islip was the last of the eight early English towns to be settled on Long Island.  William’s son Benjamin inherited the Grange and became the first town supervisor, elected at the first town meeting.  Benjamin married Charity Floyd, daughter of Richard Floyd of Setauket and Margaret Nicholl.  The Floyd’s grandson General William Floyd signed the Declaration of Independence.  Charity was Benjamin’s first cousin, thus uniting two prominent Long Island families.  The Grange remained in the Nicholl family throughout much of the nineteenth century.[10]

Boat Basin, Heckscher State Park (July 26, 2012)
Boat Basin, Heckscher State Park (July 26, 2012)

Other patents in what became the town of Islip were issued to Andrew Gibb, Thomas and Richard Willetts, Stephanus Van Cortlandt, and John Moubray.  Gibb’s patent was issued on March 26, 1692 and included the present day area of Islip hamlet.[11]  Brothers Thomas and Richard Willetts were Quakers and grandsons of Richard and Mary Washburn Willetts, who settled Jericho, Queens County in 1673.  Purchased from the Secatogue in 1692, the Willettses’ patent included West Islip.  The Willetts farm was at Secatogue Neck.[12]  Under Secatogue leadership, it was the site of the sachem residence.[13]  Jacobus Van Cortlandt purchased land in 1697 east of the Willettses’ land.  His land patent terminated on the Bay shore in Saghtekoos Neck.[14]  Here is where he built Sagtikos Manor.  His brother Jacobus acquired what is now Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx.  Moubray acquired land between Cortlandt and Gibb in present-day Bay Shore.[15]

Sagtikos Manor (September 2, 2013)
Sagtikos Manor (September 2, 2013)

Early Growth of the Present South Bay Communities

The town of Islip grew slowly for the first hundred years.  There were 885 people in the township according to the 1810 census.[16]  Beginning in 1815, oysters from Virginia were harvested in the Great South Bay.  Lumbering was also an early activity.  The population reached 2,265 by 1845.[17]

From west to east, the first two communities along the Great South Bay in the Town of Islip are West Islip and Greater Bay Shore.  Prior to the Willettses’ patent, West Islip was once the headquarters of the Secatogue.  It later developed into a locality occupied by the wealthy.[18]  Greater Bay Shore includes West Bay Shore, the village of Brightwaters, and Bay Shore proper.  Bay Shore was once called Mechanicsville.  The name changed to Penataquit, translated as “at the crooked tree,”[19] which referred to the Penataquit River on the neck where the community was situated.  After the arrival of the steel rail, the name was changed to Bay Shore.[20]  The village of Brightwaters was incorporated in 1916[21] and was once a “scrubby woods.”[22]

LIRR Bay Shore Station depot building, view southeast (September 2, 2013)
LIRR Bay Shore Station depot building, view southeast (September 2, 2013)

The next two communities are Islip hamlet and East Islip.  Islip Town Hall is located in the principle part of the Islip hamlet that is upon the neck covered by Gibb’s patent of 1692.  Orowac Brook on the west and Wingatthappagh Brook on the east provide natural boundaries.  Wingatthappagh means “sweet waters.”

East of East Islip on the west side of the Connetquot River is the hamlet of Great River.  Originally the hamlet was called Youngsport after Erastus Youngs who ran a ship-building and repair business in the community.  Early inhabitants were principally bay-men.[23]  Bay-men were fisherman who often lived in bay houses situated in marshlands.  Typically, early seaside settlements were occupied by bay-men who colonized Long Island for its abundant fish and wildlife.[24]

On the east side of the Connetquot River are the hamlets of Oakdale, West Sayville, and Sayville.  Beginning in 1849 Hollanders set sail from the Netherlands to settle on Long Island in the area of Oakdale.  A Hollander named Jacob De Waal as well as other Dutch people established homes and business in the West Sayville area, particularly in the oyster and fish industries.  Sayville was included in a 1666 patent obtained by the settlers of Setauket.  Some of these early settlements united with the Colony of Connecticut rather than New York.  Following the 1664 aforementioned expedition under the Duke of York, the whole island was granted as part of the New York colony.  The grant also provisioned the town line between Islip and Brookhaven at Sayville.  However by the eighteen century the town line was moved further east.  Early settlers of Sayville included Quaker Willett Green, John Green, and John Edwards who purchased tracts of land from the above mentioned Nicholl grant.[25]  By the 1880s the hamlet featured three hotels that attracted people of New York.  By 1876 Sayville and West Sayville showed a population of 1,200.

Lastly, the eastern most community along the Bay in Islip township is Bayport.  Originally called Middle Road, Bayport was once considered a part of Sayville.  Early business included fish oil factories.[26]

LIRR Islip Station depot building, view southeast (September 2, 2013)
LIRR Islip Station depot building, view southeast (September 2, 2013)
LIRR Oakdale Station depot building, view southeast (September 2, 2013)
LIRR Oakdale Station depot building, view southeast (September 2, 2013)
LIRR Sayville Station depot, September 2, 2013
LIRR Sayville Station depot building, view northeast (September 2, 2013)

Islip as a Summer Resort

During the 1830s Saratoga Springs, New York, was established as the first American summer resort.  The environment provided a cooler climate and the local mineral spring waters were bottled for consumption.  The resort was called a “spa” and the term spread to other areas near water.  When horsing racing was inaugurated in 1850, Saratoga became the model for post-Civil War era summer resorts.  Using this template, the wealthy from New York and Brooklyn sought a temporary escape from their large urban areas by traveling to the Great South Bay.[27]

In the 1840s, a few families from New York City came to Long Island’s South Shore to build summer residences and establish an Episcopal Church.[28]  One of the first was the family of Captain William M. Johnson, merchant and planter from New Orleans and New York City, who settled along the Great South Bay.  Johnson amassed a fortune in distillery and invested heavily in real estate.  His three sons also built summer residences along the South Shore in the 1840s.  Other early settlers included the Lawrances and the Wilmerdings.[29]  By the 1850s, a summer “spa” was formed, complete with club and resort hotel.  Until the outbreak of the Second World War, citizens of New York and Brooklyn traveled to the fifteen mile stretch of waterfront in the town of Islip.[30]  Far Rockaway’s Marine Pavilion in 1833 was the first such seaside area on Long Island.  The summer resort was an introduction to the waterside holiday.  Many vacationers followed suit and built their own homes.[31]

Yellow Trail, Connetquot River State Park (July 26, 2012)
Yellow Trail, Connetquot River State Park (July 26, 2012)

The first prominent New Yorker to come to the Great South Bay was August Belmont.  A leader in the horse racing industry, Belmont was also a financial genius and amassing a fortune in the stock market.  Opening in 1866, clubs such as the Southside Sportsman’s Club of Long Island catered to gentlemen such as Belmont.  For the Belmont family, their horse nursery provided a place to spend long weekends and holidays.  The Babylon land remained in family hands until the twentieth century.  It was overtaken by the Long Island Parks Commission in 1925.[32]

William Kissam Vanderbilt was another prominent New Yorker to come to the Great South Bay.  Son of New York Central’s Commodore Cornelius Vanderbit, William created the Idlehour estate on the east bank of the Connetquot River in 1878.[33]  The river is part of the South Shore Estuary Preserve, a system of interconnected waterways that stretches from Hempstead to Southampton Townships.  Connetquot is a Native American word that means “at the great long river.”[34]

Connetquot Brook, Connetquot River State Park (July 26, 2012)
Connetquot Brook, Connetquot River State Park (July 26, 2012)

One of the most esteemed gentlemen to arrive in the town of Islip was William Bayard Cutting.  A member of the most prestigious clubs in the city, Cutting’s first American ancestor was Mrs. Samuel Bayard of Amsterdam.  A widow, she sailed for New Amsterdam in 1647 with four small children to reunite with her brother, Governor Peter Stuyvesant.  In 1747, Leonard Cutting was the first Cutting to arrive in America.  He was an indentured servant to a Virginia plantation owner and later a classical tutor at King’s College, now Columbia University.  Born in 1850, William Bayard Cutting was admitted to the New York bar and at age twenty-eight inherited the family fortune.[35]  His investments were primarily in railroads and his persona contrasted from that of his peers.  Biographer R.W.B. Lewis described him as “one of the most prodigiously successful of the post-Civil War railroad tycoons, a sworn enemy of the ‘robber barrons’ [a person who bought out the little land-owner and cheated the small investor].”[36]  Cutting was also involved in works of charity and founded the New York Botanical Garden, reflecting his botany interest.  He was also a trustee of the Metropolitan Opera Company and his alma mater, Columbia University.  To build an estate, Cutting purchased Westbrook Farm in Great River from George L. Lorillard in October of 1884.  Landscape architect Frederick Law Olmstead created the gardens and Charles Coolidge Haight designed the mansion.  Most of the older trees at Bayard Cutting Arboretum today were planted by Cutting himself.[37]

Bayard Cutting Arboretum (May 27, 2013)
Bayard Cutting Arboretum (May 27, 2013)

In 1895, Scotsman William Dunn, Jr. built the Westbrook Golf Links on the Bayard Cutting Estate.  Membership was initially exclusive.  However, as the twentieth century progressed membership became less exclusive.  The course closed during the Second World War as some of the estate lands were transformed into a truck farm to raise crops for the war effort.[38]

Connetquot River, Bayard Cutting Arboretum (May 27, 2013)
Connetquot River, Bayard Cutting Arboretum (May 27, 2013)

The Stock Market Crash of 1929 marked the beginning of the end of the Islip summer resort.  As the Great Depression continued, estates were demolished.  Some people became year-round residents and no longer owned city homes.  Real estate redeveloped after 1950 as smaller homes on a lot of less than one acre were sold in the town of Islip.[39]

Long Island Rail Road

The coming of the railroad on Long Island had a dramatic effect on both the landscape and the culture of the Great South Bay area.  After all, railroad service in the mid-nineteenth century was the fastest and most convenient means of travel.  Railroads promoted the seaside resort community for dwellers to leave the city environment and head for the country.[40]

The first railroad to provide service to the Great South Bay  was the South Side Railroad Company of Long Island (South Side RR).  Since the Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) operated east to west service in the center of the island, a group of wealthy Long Island and Manhattan capitalists elected to develop the South Side RR from the East River to Patchogue.  Charles Fox of Baldwin headed organization of the new road.  Fox, a New York Alderman, owned Manhattan real estate and was a senior partner in the clothing house of F.B. Baldwin.  Stocks and bonds were sold in the summer of 1865 and the road was incorporated in January of 1866, with Fox elected president.  In April of 1866 the road was advertised for contract and the successful bidders were Shanahan, Meyers & Co.  Work began on May 22, 1867 and  divided into six sections: four miles between Jamaica and Springfield, five and a half to Rockville Centre, four to Freeport, six to Massapequa, and the last fifteen to Islip.[41]  Tracks began to be laid between Babylon and Patchogue on April 2, 1868 with work completed on or about April 10, 1869.[42]  However, South Side RR had a short existence.  The last timetable appeared in February of 1876.  Henceforward, rail service on the line was operated by the LIRR.  In June of 1876 the two roads were connected at Springfield.  The right of way was first referred to as the Southern Railroad of Long Island Division and later as the Montauk Branch.[43]  By 1879, three trains stopped daily, both eastbound and westbound, at all stations in Islip township.  One train both ways provided service on Sundays.[44]

Mark Twain termed the period from about 1880 to the First World War as the Gilded Age.  Centered in New York City, the leaders of the era were successful merchants exhibiting their wealth in luxurious lifestyles that featured estates, mansions, horses, and yachts.  Promotion of beach resorts and clubs on Long Island was key to attract such leaders.  Austin Corbin was responsible for the Great South Bay promotion in the Gilded Age.  He was born in Newport in 1827 and went to Harvard Law School.  Upon graduation at age twenty-two, he moved west to Davenport, Iowa, and founded a bank.  A gifted organizer and promoter, he later established a New York bank that specialized in railroad expansion, the Corbin Banking Company.[45]

Following its takeover of all the existing competing railroads into one central company, the LIRR entered a period of uncertainty.  In 1880 after several large financial losses, the company declared bankruptcy.  By December, ownership was awarded to Corbin and his syndicate, in light of Corbin’s experience as president of the Bay Ridge & Coney Island Railroad, and the Manhattan Beach Railroad.  He was named president of the LIRR on January 1, 1881.  Corbin understood the necessity to connect a successful railroad with the Great South Bay resorts.  Promotion and solid finances was necessary to upgrade equipment and service.  By June, passenger cars and locomotives were overhauled, new ties and tracks laid, and the Long Island City depot rebuilt.[46]

In November of 1881, Corbin obtained fifteen acres of Babylon land on the west side of Blythebourne Lake, between the railroad tracks and South Country Road, and developed a resort hotel.  Named Argyle after substantial investment from the Duke of Argyle’s son, Lord Lorne, the hotel opened for guests on June 20, 1882.  It catered to New York and Brooklyn residents who sought refuge from the bustling inner city, like the Prospect House in Bay Shore and the Pavilion Hotel in Islip.[47]  Corbin’s work proved successful as LIRR service improved and resort hotels flourished in the early 1880s.  While Corbin and the LIRR were significant in the growth of the Great South Bay area, the later part of the 1880s witnessed the demise of the resort hotel.  After several unsuccessful seasons the Argyle was sold in March of 1891 to real estate magnate William Ziegler.  Following more unprofitability, the Argyle finally closed in 1897.  It was razed in 1904 and its lumber used to build houses at the new Argyle Park.[48]

Stations along the Great South Bay

Current service to the Great South Bay area is provided by the Montauk Branch of the LIRR. A second track to Oakdale Station was in service in April 1906. An extension to Sayville Station was completed in early 1917. Eastbound service to Islip township is provided by trains that terminate at Patchogue or Speonk as well as the occasional Montauk local. In light of the LIRR’s new dual-mode diesel electric locomotives, westbound service terminates at Babylon, Jamaica, Long Island City, Hunterspoint Avenue, or Pennsylvania Station, New York. The right of way passes west to east through the West Islip hamlet, West Bay Shore hamlet, Village of Brightwaters, Bay Shore hamlet, Islip hamlet, East Islip hamlet, Great River hamlet, Oakdale hamlet, West Sayville hamlet, Sayville hamlet and Bayport hamlet.[49]

The first station stop, Bay Shore, first appeared on the May 20, 1868 timetable of the South Side RR under the name Penataquit at Park Avenue and Fourth Avenue.  By July of 1868 it was changed to Bay Shore.[50]  The station featured a small depot building and railroad officials promised residents that it was to be enlarged in early 1880.[51]  However, by May of that year, the road wanted to move the depot half-mile west and abandon the old building.  Residents challenged the relocation and station improvements were temporarily shelved.[52]  Nevertheless, on February 20, 1882, the Bay Shore Improvement Society passed a resolution to appoint a draft committee to pressure the LIRR to improve depot accommodations.[53]  Residential perseverance paid off.  A new depot on Fourth Avenue, which was moved on flatcars from Farmingdale, [54] was reconstructed and completed in May of 1882.[55]  The former structure was relocated and used as a freight house.[56]

Bay Shore Station
Historical Fact
Date
Station and depot building opened as Penataquit May 20, 1868 (timetable)
Renamed Bay Shore Station By July 1868
Depot building replaced (relocated from Farmingdale) May 1882
Depot building replaced (including underpass and waiting room) Spring – Summer 1912
Depot building opened (including underpass and waiting room) July 17, 1912
Twin high-level concrete platform construction began (with two flat-roofed, metal-framed Plexiglas passenger shelters on the westbound platform and one on the eastbound) December 12, 1983 (author’s analysis)
Twin high-level concrete platform construction completed Late Spring 1984 (author’s analysis)
Agency closed (except on summer weekends) November 20, 1996 (author’s analysis)
Depot building renovated Late 1999 – Summer 2000 (author’s analysis)

Plans to construct a new Bay Shore depot due to unsanitary conditions and poor ground maintenance at the 1882 building began in February of 1907 at a meeting of the Bay Shore committee on railroad facilities.  Officers W.W. Hulse and Irving J. Long were directed to confer with LIRR president Peters regarding the matter.[57]  However, progress didn’t ensue until three years later when the LIRR promised a replacement depot so long as it was financed by local funds.  Under the leadership of Robert A. Bachia, $20,000 was raised by August of 1911 from forty contributions.[58]  Rather than accept the money, the LIRR asked its corporate parent the Pennsylvania Railroad to foot the bill.  Ultimately, the funds from the “patriotic forty” were utilized to make area ground more attractive.[59]  The new, current structure featured a main depot on the north side of the tracks and a subway to a waiting room on the south side.  It formally opened on July 17, 1912.[60]

Aside from the occasional station painting, Bay Shore depot remained unchanged until the 1980s. Utilizing a $980,000 MTA improvement fund, the LIRR allocated money for two 1,020-foot high-level platforms. Purportedly, it was the first step to provide electric service, and to improve train traffic in and out of the station during the summer months when many Fire Island-bound commuters used the station to make ferry connections. However, for construction of the platforms, a two block section of Park Avenue was removed. Some residents and community leaders feared aggravated street congestion.[61] Nevertheless, the Islip town board approved the four-foot-high, twelve-car length, platforms and the closure of Park Avenue since only 800 automobiles used the road daily in the summer months. Construction commenced on December 12, 1983. It also included two flat-roofed, metal-framed Plexiglas passenger shelters with Plexiglas inserts on the westbound platform west of the depot building and one on the eastbound.[62]

LIRR Bay Shore Station, eastbound high-level platform, view west (September 2, 2013)
LIRR Bay Shore Station, eastbound high-level platform, view west (September 2, 2013)
LIRR Bay Shore Station waiting room (June 26, 2015)
LIRR Bay Shore Station waiting room (June 26, 2015)

Islip Station, in the hamlet of Islip west of New York State Route 111, Islip Avenue, also first appeared on the May 20, 1868 timetable. A depot building was set up and the station remained the terminus of the road until September 1 of 1868.[63] The Trains are Fun website states that a second depot was built in 1881 on the south side of the tracks.[64] Vincent F. Seyfried’s comprehensive history of the road confirms this and adds that residents subscribed six hundred dollars for the second depot.[65] A three-sided, saltbox-roofed wooden passenger shelter was erected on the westbound platform sometime after the line was double-tracked in 1906. In June of 1963 the LIRR announced that Islip was to get a new $30,000 colonial depot. At the time, the railroad sought local input in new station construction. The Islip Chamber of Commerce recommended forty-two year design veteran Richard F. Boyd to architect the structure. The new building was built directly opposite the existing station and parking improved to 500 cars.[66] Originally, the new station dedication was to be on Saturday, November 23, 1963. However, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated the day before so the ceremony was postponed to Saturday, December 7. LIRR president Thomas Goodfellow presided over the event, which featured the hamlet’s high school band. Boyd’s design included a weathervane in the shape of an old-fashioned steam locomotive atop the roof. High School senior Bernardino Genchi was called to construct the metal device and attach it to the pinnacle from a “cherry picker”. However, at the ceremony, a temporary wooden weathervane was installed because Genchi’s metal instrument was not ready. It was added later. The former depot was torn down in the third week of November.[67]

Islip Station
Historical Fact
Date
Station opened May 20, 1868 (timetable)
Depot building opened (relocated from Islip Centre) Fall 1869
Depot building replaced 1881
Three-sided, saltbox-roofed wooden passenger shelter (on the westbound platform) erected 1906 (author’s analysis)
Wooden passenger shelter razed Summer 1963 (author’s analysis)
Depot building razed November 18 – 22, 1963 (author’s analysis)
Depot building replaced Summer – Fall 1963 (author’s analysis)
Depot building opened December 7, 1963 (author’s analysis)
Three-sided, shed-roofed metal passenger shelters erected (two on the westbound platform and one on the eastbound platform) Summer – Fall 1963 (author’s analysis)
Metal passenger shelters razed Sometime between Fall 1995 & Fall 1996 (author’s analysis)
Twin high-level concrete platform and ramp constructed (each with a large, saltbox-roofed passenger waiting area shelter and information center made of steel and enamel painted red-brick, mint and light beige) Fall 1995 – Fall 1996 (author’s analysis)
Station agency closed April 1, 1996 (author’s analysis)
Station agent assigned to platform May – September 13, 1996 (author’s analysis)
Depot building renovated Fall 1999 – Early 2000 (author’s analysis)
LIRR Islip Station, eastbound high-level platform, view east (September 2, 2013)
LIRR Islip Station, eastbound high-level platform, view east (September 2, 2013)

By the this time, low-level platforms extended between the crossings at Islip Avenue and Commack Road on both sides of the track at Islip station. In addition to the new depot, three-sided, shed-roofed metal passenger shelters on concrete foundations were installed. On the westbound platform two shelters were erected, one on the east end and one to the west of the depot. On the eastbound platform, a shelter was located across the tracks from the depot building at the site of the former depot building near a pedestrian crossing.[68]

LIRR Islip Station waiting room (June 26, 2015)
LIRR Islip Station waiting room (June 26, 2015)

Great River also opened in 1868 but as a freight station called Youngsport.[69] The locale acquired the name Youngsport from the shipyard of Erastus Young.[70] Residents also referred to the area as Riverside.[71] The station, just west of Connetquot Avenue, and community name was changed to Great River after a resolution by local landowners on May 11, 1881. Passenger service and a depot building, on the south side of the track, were added in 1897. Work on the structure began in early July by the contractor J.E. VanOrden, similar in design to facilities at Merrick and costing about $2,000.[72] It was ready for business by mid-August.[73] A three-sided, saltbox-roofed wooden passenger shelter was erected in the center of the westbound platform sometime after the line was double-tracked in 1906. Unfortunately the depot building burned down in the summer of 1944, six years after the station agency closed.[74]

In April of 1945 the LIRR announced a plan to build a new Great River depot.[75] Through the efforts of State Senator-elect W. Kingsland Macy, a resident of Islip, construction of the new building was planned for December of 1945.[76] However, it was delayed because members of the Islip Terrace Chamber of Commerce and the Islip Community Association advocated for a new station in East Islip to replace Great River. Citing that only twelve commuters used the old station, backers of the new plan said that up to 150 residents would use an East Islip depot. The new idea was debated at a February 25, 1946 State Public Service Commission meeting. Citizens of Great River, railroad officials, and two local organizations opposed the concept.[77] Ultimately, on March 21 the commission ruled that an East Islip depot was “not justified inasmuch as such a station would be too near the Islip station for good operation of the railroad.” A multi-windowed rectangular structure with a large waiting room, topped with a flat roof supported by four exterior columns that provided covered exterior waiting space, was erected at Great River Station on the south side of the tracks adjacent to the eastbound platform. Work on the modern $8,000 building began in early May of 1946 by Salson Construction Company of Jamaica and was completed within a few weeks. By this time, low-level platforms extended westward from Connetquot Avenue on both sides of the track. The depot building was painted light sea green with a cream trim on July 7, 1958 and remodeled years later with a hipped roof. It lasted until high-level station platform construction began in the fall of 1996.[78]

Great River Station
Historical Fact
Date
Station opened as a freight house named Youngsport 1868
Renamed Great River Station May 1881
Passenger service began 1897
Depot building construction began Early July 1997
Depot building construction completed Mid-August 1897
Three-sided, saltbox-roofed wooden passenger shelter shed erected (on the westbound platform) 1906 (author’s analysis)
Station agency closed 1938 (author’s analysis)
Depot building destroyed by fire Late summer 1944 (author’s analysis)
Depot building replaced Early May – June 1946 (author’s analysis)
Depot building remodeled (with a hipped roof) 1960s (author’s analysis)
Depot building razed Sometime between Fall 1995 & Fall 1996 (author’s analysis)
Twin high-level concrete platform and ramp constructed (each with a large, saltbox-roofed passenger waiting area shelter and information center made of steel and enamel painted red-brick, mint and light beige) Fall 1995 – Fall 1996 (author’s analysis)
Wooden passenger shelter relocated to south platform 1999 (author’s analysis)
LIRR Great River Station, eastbound high-level platform, view east (September 2, 2013)
LIRR Great River Station, eastbound high-level platform, view east (September 2, 2013)
LIRR Great River Station eastbound grade-level wooden shelter (September 2, 2013)
LIRR Great River Station eastbound grade-level wooden shelter (September 2, 2013)

Oakdale Station first appeared on the December 1, 1868 timetable.[79]  At first, the station, located at Oakdale-Bohemia Road north of Montauk Highway, featured a wooden depot building.  However, William K. Vanderbilt and other prominent residents such as William Bayard Cutting financed the construction of a new, more elaborate structure in the spring of 1890.  Reportedly, Vanderbilt’s daughter was about to be married and he wanted a stylish depot to greet wedding guests.[80]  The new design was a two-story Philadelphia-pressed brick building with a slate roof that sported two fireplaces and cost $20,000.  It was completed in November of 1890 on the south side of the tracks just west of the crossing. Following the addition of a second track, a three-sided, saltbox-roofed wooden passenger shelter was constructed on the westbound platform that lasted until concrete platform construction in the late-1990s.[81]

Oakdale Station
Historical Fact
Date
Station and depot building opened December 1, 1868 (timetable)
Depot building replaced Spring – Fall 1890
Depot building opened November 1890
Three-sided, saltbox-roofed wooden passenger shelter erected (on the westbound platform) 1920s (author’s analysis)
Station agency closed April 1, 1996 (author’s analysis)
Station agent assigned to platform May – September 13, 1996 (author’s analysis)
Wooden passenger shelter razed Sometime between Fall 1996 & Summer 1997 (author’s analysis)
Twin high-level concrete platform and ramp constructed (with two large, saltbox-roofed passenger waiting area shelters and information centers on the westbound platform made of steel and enamel painted red-brick, mint and light beige) Summer 1996 – Summer 1997 (author’s analysis)
Twin high-level concrete platform and ramp opened September 18, 1997 (author’s analysis)
Depot building renovated Spring 2000 (author’s analysis)
LIRR Oakdale Station, high-level platforms, view west (September 2, 2013)
LIRR Oakdale Station, high-level platforms, view west (September 2, 2013)
LIRR Oakdale Station waiting room (September 2, 2013)
LIRR Oakdale Station waiting room (September 2, 2013)

Sayville Station also began service on December 1, 1868.  In October of 1869 a freight house and wooden station platform was constructed at Sayville.[82]  The first Sayville ticket office was housed in the west room of Woodhull Raynor’s hotel on the north side of the tracks.  A station building was built about 1870.[83]  However, as early as 1900, there was discussion of a replacement.  As with Bay Shore Station, the LIRR wanted to move Sayville 850 feet west to donated land, and alter its freight house and track arrangements.  LIRR superintendent W.F. Potter declared that to meet these needs a strip of land 150 feet wide, extending south from Railroad Avenue and west to Garfield Avenue, needed to be obtained.  Potter also stated that residents needed to contribute funds for both the depot and grounds.  A public meeting was held on December 8, 1900.[84]  In the end, the decision was left to the State Railroad Commission who inspected the site on February 9, 1901.[85]  After a hearing, the commissioners denied the relocation.[86] The railroad conceded and set out to construct the building near the old depot once erection of the new Rockville Centre station was underway.  The new twenty-four-by-forty-eight foot Sayville building was to be of cement or stucco with a Moorish style and red roof tiles.  The architecture was prepared by Bradford L. Gilbert of New York and the cement platform was to be 300-feet long and eight-feet wide.[87]  However, the railroad needed to secure some essential land,[88] in particular, property owned by Terry & Wood Estates and I.H. Green, Jr.  Condemnation took several years and it was not until William Bason, Sr., assumed supervision of the project did construction begin.  One last hurdle was a failed attempt by Terry & Wood interests to convince the LIRR to relocate the new depot in October of 1905.[89] 

Finally, on July 31, 1906, the station agent moved into the building, just west of Railroad Avenue, and the first ticket was sold for the one o’clock eastbound train.  In the early 1950s a flat-roofed passenger shelter with a roof overhang and interior waiting area was erected on the westbound platform across from the depot building, replacing a wooden shelter shed erected when the second track was added. Additionally, in the 1960s a three-sided, shed-roofed metal passenger shelter on a concrete foundation was added on the west end of the westbound platform. There was a third shelter but it needed to be razed because of constant vandalism in the late 1970s. By this time, the low-level platforms extended between the Greeley Avenue and Railroad Avenue crossings on both sides of the track.[90]

Sayville Station
Historical Fact
Date
Station opened December 1, 1868 (timetable)
Depot building opened 1870
Depot building replaced 1906
Depot building opened July 31, 1906
Three-sided, saltbox-roofed wooden passenger shelter erected (on the westbound platform) 1917 (author’s analysis)
Wooden passenger shelter razed Early 1950s (author’s analysis)
Flat-roofed passenger shelter with roof overhang and indoor waiting area erected (on the westbound platform) Early 1950s (author’s analysis)
Three-sided, shed-roofed metal passenger shelter erected (on westbound platform) Early 1960s (author’s analysis)
Station agency closed (except for summer weekends) April 1, 1996 (author’s analysis)
Station agent assigned to platform May – September 13, 1996 (author’s analysis)
Passenger shelter with roof overhang
and indoor waiting area razed
Sometime between Fall 1996 & Summer 1997 (author’s analysis)
Metal passenger shelter razed Sometime between Fall 1996 & Summer 1997 (author’s analysis)
Twin high-level concrete platform and ramp constructed (with two large, saltbox-roofed passenger waiting area shelters and information centers on the westbound platform made of steel and enamel painted red-brick, mint and light beige) Summer 1996 – Summer 1997 (author’s analysis)
Twin high-level concrete platform and ramp opened September 18, 1997 (author’s analysis)
Depot building renovated Late 1999 – Fall 2000 (author’s analysis)
Pedestrian overpass completed Spring 2000 – November 2000 (author’s analysis)
Depot building renovated Spring 2000 – Fall 2000 (author’s analysis)
Depot building reopened December 28, 2000 (author’s analysis)
Mono-slope, cantilever platform canopies (on the westbound platform) erected Fall 2002 – Summer 2003 (author’s analysis)
LIRR Sayville Station, eastbound platform, view east, September 2, 2013
LIRR Sayville Station, eastbound high-level platform, view east (September 2, 2013)
LIRR Sayville Station waiting room (September 2, 2013)
LIRR Sayville Station waiting room (September 2, 2013)

Islip, Great River, Oakdale, and Sayville were refitted with high-level platforms in the mid-1990s to accommodate the LIRR’s new diesel fleet and to meet requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act.[91] In addition to the four-foot-high platforms, new passenger shelters were built. The project commenced at Islip and Great River, with G. Penza & Sons of Deer Park as the main contractor.[92] At Islip the westbound high-level platform was constructed just west of the depot building while its counterpart was constructed closer to the Islip Avenue crossing. At Great River the new platforms were erected just west of the Connetquot Avenue crossing. During construction in December 1995, an error by the consulting firm of Urbahn Associates and Daniel Frankfurt resulted in the platforms being two to three inches higher than the boarding level of the train. The platforms, which consist of precast steel-reinforced concrete slabs placed atop concrete piers, needed to be repaired before the construction of Oakdale and Sayville. When work was completed, both Islip and Great River received two four-car-length platforms, each with a large, saltbox-roofed passenger waiting area shelter and information center. In addition, in 1999 East Islip High School relocated the old wooden shelter at Great River from the north side of the railroad tracks to the south side at the location of the former depot building.[93]

Platform construction at Oakdale and Sayville concluded with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on September 18, 1997 at Oakdale Station. Oakdale’s two new platforms extended westward from the depot building and were the length of four cars. Two large, saltbox-roofed passenger waiting area shelters and information centers were installed on the westbound platform while the eastbound side did not receive a shelter. Constructed between the two crossings, Sayville’s new platforms had a six-car capacity, with two saltbox-roofed passenger waiting area shelters erected on the westbound side. A central pedestrian track crossing was eliminated.[94]

Once platforms were in service, further improvements and modifications were conducted with a $2.6 million LIRR grant that funded both building reconstruction and the installation of 4,800 plants as part of the Keep Islip Clean project. Islip Station work was completed first, in early 2000, and included new landscaping and depot building renovation. Work at Bay Shore also included building renovation and was completed by the summer of 2000. Previously, artwork by Brit Bunkley was installed on each of the depot building’s canopies in 1992. It consists of cast-stone relief panels depicting scenes of local transportation history.[95]

Oakdale and Sayville received additional funds thanks to the efforts of State Senator Caesar Trunzo who was appointed chairman of the New York Senate Transportation Committee in January of 1999. Aside from depot building renovation, Oakdale Station received new curbing and sidewalks, and a brick-paved bus pick up area for local college students. In addition to a new pedestrian overpass between the two high-level platforms completed in November 2000, the Sayville depot building renovation boasted a handsome oak interior, ticket office, and two ADA-accessible restrooms. An official post-renovation opening ceremony was held on December 28, 2000. Sayville later received new parking lots, public address speakers, and a 300-foot long mono-slope, cantilever platform canopy on the westbound platform. Completed by the summer of 2003, the canopy is divided into four sections and provides cover adjacent to each shelter.[96]

Service has remained relatively steady throughout the history of LIRR operations, with Bay Shore and Sayville receiving the most frequent.  Prior to the introduction of the LIRR’s dual-mode diesel electric locomotives, steam and diesel westbound trains terminated at Babylon, Jamaica, Hunterspoint Avenue or Long Island City.  In 1942, weekday service numbered roughly twenty trains per day, both eastbound and westbound.  Great River service was less frequent and sometimes required a flag stop.[97]  By 1978, service was under twenty trains per day, and weekend service was under fifteen.[98]  However, the twenty-first century has witnessed an increase in service to the Great South Bay communities.  Roughly twenty trains per day in both directions stop along the Great South Bay and the LIRR added additional weekday service as well as hourly service on weekends in the summer of 2013.[99]

Ticket agencies were closed at Islip, Oakdale, and Sayville in the mid-1990s.  A similar attempt to close Oakdale’s agency failed in 1982 after a 847-name petition signed by Oakdale residents pressured the railroad to keep it open. Claiming that the Islip, Oakdale, and Sayville Stations sold a low-volume of tickets, the LIRR closed the agencies as of April 1, 1996 to reduce the company’s operating budget.  In response, Nassau County and three organizations for the disabled sued contending that visually impaired riders incurred “irreparable harm” because of the absence of ticket clerks at a total of thirty-six stations. Following a hearing, Judge Leonard D. Wexler of Federal District Court in Hauppauge issued an injunction on May 30 giving the LIRR a choice to reopen their windows or assign ticket agents to the platforms from 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. The railroad took the second choice and agents at seven stations, including Oakdale, Sayville, and Islip, were reassigned to the platforms.[100]  Nevertheless, the preliminary injunction was overturned in the first week of September.[101]  Ticket vending machines replaced daily clerks assigned to Islip, Oakdale, and Sayville as of September 16.  Bay Shore’s agency also permanently closed November 20.  Despite the closures, both Bay Shore and Sayville were slated to be manned by ticket sellers on weekends between the Fourth of July and Labor Day since they serve tourists heading to and from the Fire Island ferries.[102]

Former railroad station stops along the Great South Bay include Islip Centre, Club House, and Bayport.  Islip Centre was an additional station within Bay Shore.  Located at Brentwood Road, the stop may have serviced members of the Olympic Boat Club.  Service began December 1, 1868.[103]  By the summer of 1869, there were three eastbound daily trains at 10:37 a.m., 5:50 p.m., and 7:27 p.m.  Westbound service was at 6:04 a.m., 7:35 a.m., and 3:52 p.m.  In addition, there was a late Saturday evening eastbound, an early Monday morning westbound at 4:30 a.m., and a 7:20 a.m. westbound Sunday milk train.[104]  As of September 1, 1869, the station was discontinued and the twenty-by-eighty foot depot building hauled eastward on a flat car to serve Islip Station, where a twelve-foot wide platform was built.[105]

Islip Centre Station
Historical Fact
Date
Station and depot building opened December 1, 1868 (timetable)
Station closed September 1, 1869 (author’s analysis)

Club House, on the west bank of the Connetquot River in what is now Bayard Cutting Arboretum, provided transportation to the aforementioned Southside Sportsman’s Club of Long Island from 1869 to the mid-1880s.  Both William K. Vanderbilt and William Bayard Cutting were members of the club.[106]  While it was listed on railroad timetables as a station stop forty-five and one-third miles from the Brooklyn waterfront, no times were given.[107]  A small brick depot building was located south of the tracks at the Montauk Highway crossing.[108]  A bridge was built over a brook that led from the estate to the club to allow direct access for William Bayard Cutting.  The private station served only twenty-three passengers in 1885 and was thereafter closed.  [109]

Club House Station
Historical Fact
Date
Station and depot building opened 1869 (timetable)
Station closed 1885 (author’s analysis)
Location of the former LIRR Islip Centre Station, Brentwood Road grade crossing, view west (September 2, 2013)
Location of the former LIRR Islip Centre Station, Brentwood Road grade crossing, view west (September 2, 2013)
Location of the Former LIRR Club House Station, Bayard Cutting Arboretum (September 2, 2013)
Location of the Former LIRR Club House Station, Bayard Cutting Arboretum (September 2, 2013)

Similar to Oakdale and Sayville, Bayport Station first appeared on the December 1, 1868 timetable.  Residents built a depot building in March of 1869 with material provided by the South Side RR.[110]  Discussion of a new depot began at a meeting in the Bayport truck house on May 23, 1901 where the Hon. Regis H. Post was elected chairman of a committee to secure a new building.  Citing that other stations urgently needed new depots, railroad president Baldwin suggested that Bayport residents could donate the four and five thousand dollars for a new structure.  With funds allocated, location of the depot was debated since securing land near the existing depot east of Snedecor Avenue was too costly.  Ultimately, Mrs. Edward Gillette offered to donate land for a passenger depot west of Snedecor Avenue, six hundred feet from the old station.[111]  The station opened Monday, August 10, 1903 as the 1:51 p.m. westbound train made a stop at the new eight thousand dollar building located two hundred feet west of Snedecor Avenue.  Built of brick with stucco finish, it was twenty-five-by-eighty feet with a projecting roof at either end extending out fifty feet from the main building.  The platforms were of concrete and cinders, and the waiting room seated fifty people.  Residents were grateful for the donated land and to Post who rigorously labored for the new station.  A freight house was added west of the depot on land purchased from Mrs. Gillette.[112]  Both structures were constructed by the contractor Wm. Bason & Son of Sayville.[113]  The former depot building was moved two hundred feet eastward in September of 1903 and served as a freight house.[114]  The new passenger depot building was removed in May of 1964 and a three-sided, shed-roofed metal passenger shelter erected in its place.[115]

Bayport Station
Historical Fact
Date
Station opened December 1, 1868 (timetable)
Depot building opened March 1869
Depot building replaced 1903
Depot building opened August 10, 1903
Three-sided, shed-roofed metal passenger shelter erected Spring 1964 (author’s analysis)
Depot building razed May 1964
Metal passenger shelter razed By 1980 (author’s analysis)
Last passenger service September 5, 1980 (author’s analysis)
Station closed September 6, 1980
LIRR Bayport Station, second depot building, view east, circa 1925 (The Collection of Ron Ziel)
LIRR Bayport Station, platform and second depot building, view east (Circa 1925, The Collection of Ron Ziel)

According to a 1942 timetable, service to Bayport was comparable to other station stops along the Great South Bay, even superior to Great River.[116]  However, by the time of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s (MTA) takeover of the LIRR in the mid-1960s service was reduced to five scheduled station stops, both eastbound and westbound, primarily during peak train hours, and weekend service was limited to two morning westbound trains and one early morning eastbound local train from Babylon to Speonk.[117]  Moreover, by October of 1979 only four trains stopped at the station, two weekday morning westbound at 5:07 a.m. and 6:43 a.m., and two weekday evening eastbound at 6:19 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., and there was no weekend service.[118]  The following summer, Bayport was no longer listed as a station stop on employee timetables effective May 12.[119]  On August 7, 1980 the Long Island Committee of the MTA met and discussed termination of service at the station.  LIRR spokesman Don Malone said that the daily ridership average was nine persons.  He also stated that although a station shutdown wouldn’t save money it would save time for Montauk Branch trains.  Residents could use nearby Sayville Station, located 1.2 miles to the west.[120]  The website Trains are Fun confirms that the station was closed effective September 6, 1980.[121]  Any formal announcement was lost in the much-ballyhooed September 3 “commuter strike” against railroad service where a reported thirty to fifty percent of commuters refused to either purchase or present tickets.[122]

LIRR Patchoque Timetable Effective October 13, 1979: One of the last timetables to mark eastbound service to Bayport Station
LIRR Patchogue Timetable Effective October 13, 1979: One of the last timetables to mark eastbound service to Bayport Station
LIRR Patchoque Timetable Effective October 13, 1979: One of the last timetables to mark westbound service to Bayport Station
LIRR Patchoque Timetable Effective October 13, 1979: One of the last timetables to mark westbound service to Bayport Station
Location of the former LIRR Bayport Station, Snedecor Avenue grade crossing, view east (July 21, 2013)
Location of the former LIRR Bayport Station, Snedecor Avenue grade crossing, view east (July 21, 2013)

Conclusion

Today, Islip township features numerous attractions on the Connetquot River.  The aforementioned Idlehour estate of William K. Vanderbilt along the east bank was purchased by Adelphi College in January of 1963 and developed as a higher education campus.  In 1968 the Oakdale campus severed ties with Adelphi and was established as Dowling College, named after chief benefactor Robert Dowling, a noted city planner, philanthropist, and aviator.[123]   On the west bank of the Connetquot River, on the former estate for which it is named, lies Bayard Cutting Arboretum.  The land was donated to the Long Island State Park Region by Mrs. William Bayard Cutting and her daughter, Mrs. Olivia James, in memory of William Bayard Cutting, “to provide an oasis of beauty and quiet for the pleasure, rest and refreshment of those who delight in outdoor beauty; and to bring about a greater appreciation and understanding of the value and importance of informal planting.”  The manor house features a café with an open porch overlooking the Connetquot River.[124]  North of the Arboretum along the river is another state park, the Connetquot River State Park Preserve.

Mansion, Bayard Cutting Arboretum (May 27, 2013)
Mansion, Bayard Cutting Arboretum (May 27, 2013)
Main Pond, Connetquot River State Park (July 26, 2012)
Main Pond, Connetquot River State Park (July 26, 2012)
Bayard Cutting Arboretum Garden (May 27, 2013)
Bayard Cutting Arboretum Garden (May 27, 2013)

Bay Shore, Great River, and East Islip also host points of interest.  The former land purchased by Stephanus Van Cortlandt from the Secatogue in 1692 houses Bay Shore’s Sagtikos Manor.  Sagtikos is a Native American word meaning “head of the hissing snake.”  The land was so-called because of the sound of a small stream that flows through the neck of the Manor’s land.  After passing through several hands, Suffolk County purchased the remaining ten acre property.  It is currently contracted to the Sagtikos Manor Historical Society for management of the estate.[125]  Great River is home to Heckscher State Park.  The picnic destination for many area residents was once the estate property of William Nicholl and features stunning views of the Great South Bay and Fire Island.  Despite opposition from wealthy local residents in the early twentieth century, Parks Commissioner Robert Moses succeeded in the purchase of the property and its conversion to a municipal park.  The State of New York bought the area from a donation from the affluent August Heckscher.[126]  East Islip’s Brookwood Hall is a grand Georgian Revival house built in 1903.  Although currently it is home to Islip town offices, the Islip Art Museum, and the Islip Arts Council, it was once a private residence.  Manhattan millionaire Harry K. Knapp constructed the building as a summer retreat and sold it to the Thorne family in 1929.  However, in 1941 the house and its forty-one rooms became part of the Orphan Asylum Society of the City of Brooklyn.  The orphanage closed in 1965.[127]

Islip Art Museum, Brookwood Hall Park (May 19, 2013)
Islip Art Museum, Brookwood Hall Park (May 19, 2013)
Knapps Lake, Brookwood Hall Park (May 19, 2013)
Knapps Lake, Brookwood Hall Park (May 19, 2013)

The town of Islip evolved from a rural farm community to a seaside escape for the wealthy, and finally to a suburb to one of the largest urban centers in the world.  To accent its heritage, the town seal features a tree.  The northern branch represents the ceding of Smithtown from Wyandanche, Sachem of Montauk, to Lion Gardiner in 1659.  Gardiner sold it to Richard Smythe in 1663, who was awarded a patent in 1665.  The branches on either side signify Brookhaven and Huntington, both patented between 1666 and 1686.  The eye in the center is the mark of vigilance as a former supervisor suggested that it was an “eye slip” that Brookhaven and Huntington did not succeed in acquiring Islip.  The date 1683 refers to William Nicholl’s first purchase that was granted on November 29, 1683.  The Latin motto “Fide sed cui vide” translates as “Have confidence but be careful in whom you confide!”[128]  Total Islip township population is over 300,000.  No longer is the Great South Bay area a summer residence for the social elite.  Currently, it features year-round homes where residents enjoy the landscape and the tranquility of a seaside community.


 

Next page: North Fork Rail Stations: A Brief History of Southold Town and its Ra

 
________________________________________________________________

[1] Harry W. Havemeyer, Along the Great South Bay: From Oakdale to Babylon, the Story of a Summer Spa, 1840 to 1940 (Mattituck, NY: Amereon House, 1996), 5.

[2] Ibid., 11.

[3] Ibid., 8.

[4] Ibid., 5.

[5] Ibid., 14.

[6] Ibid., 14-15.

[7] Ibid., 9.

[8] Ibid., 15.

[9] Benjamin F. Thompson, History of Long Island: Containing an Account of the Discovery and Settlement (New York: E. French, 1839), 66-67.

[10] Havemeyer, Along the Great South Bay, 15-16.

[11] Richard M. Bayles, Historical and Descriptive Sketches of Suffolk County with a Historical Outline of Long Island (Port Washington, NY: Ira J. Friedman Inc., 1962), 198.

[12] Havemeyer, Along the Great South Bay, 17.

[13] Thompson, History of Long Island, 67.

[14] Bayles, Historical and Descriptive Sketches, 198.

[15] Havemeyer, Along the Great South Bay, 17.

[16] Ibid., 19.

[17] Ibid., IX.

[18] Bayles, Historical and Descriptive Sketches, 208.

[19] William Wallace Tooker, The Indian Place-names on Long Island and Islands adjacent with their Probable Significations (Port Washington, N.Y.: I.J. Friedman, 1962), 189.

[20] Bayles, Historical and Descriptive Sketches, 211.

[21] “Village of Brightwaters,” Village Of Brightwaters, accessed September 8, 2013, http://www.villageofbrightwaters.com/default.aspx.

[22] Henry Isham Hazelton, The Boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens, Counties of Nassau and Suffolk, Long Island, New York, 1609-1924 (New York: Lewis Historical, 1925), 838.

[23] Bayles, Historical and Descriptive Sketches, 212-217.

[24] Nancy Solomon, On the Bay: Bay Houses and Maritime Culture on Long Island’s Marshlands (Syosset, NY: Friends for Long Island’s Heritage, 1992), 6.

[25] Clarissa Edwards, A History of Early Sayville (Sayville, NY: Suffolk County News Press, 1974).

[26] Bayles, Historical and Descriptive Sketches, 211.

[27] Havemeyer, Along the Great South Bay, 20.

[28] Ibid., X.

[29] Ibid., 22-26.

[30] Ibid., XI.

[31] Ibid., 27.

[32] Havemeyer, Along the Great South Bay, 40-47.

[33] Ibid., 64-65.

[34] Bayard Cutting Arboretum, The Connetquot River, New York State Park Marker (Great River, NY).

[35] Havemeyer, Along the Great South Bay, 136-137.

[36] R.W.B. Lewis, Edith Wharton: A Biography (1975), quoted in Ibid., 138.

[37] Havemeyer, Along the Great South Bay, 139-143.

[38] Bayard Cutting Arboretum, Westbrook Golf Links, New York State Park Marker (Great River, NY).

[39] Havemeyer, Along the Great South Bay, 420-421.

[40] Ibid., 21-22.

[41] Vincent F. Seyfried, The Long Island Rail Road: A Comprehensive History, vol. 1, South side R.R. of L.I. (Garden City, NY: Seyfried, 1984), 2-3.

[42] Ibid., 19-20.

[43] Ibid., 69.

[44] “Travelers’ Guide,” South Side Signal (Babylon), September 27, 1879, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[45] Havemeyer, Along the Great South Bay, 91-92.

[46] Ibid., 93.

[47] Ibid., 95.

[48] Ibid., 98-99.

[49] “Town Map,” Town of Islip, accessed on September 8, 2013, http://www.townofislip-ny.gov/about-islip/town-map; “Local News,” South Side Signal (Babylon), April 21, 1906, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com; “Steam Shovel is Now at Work,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), March 9, 1917, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[50] Seyfried, The Long Island Rail Road: A Comprehensive History, vol. 1, 79.

[51] “Bay Shore,” South Side Signal (Babylon), January 31, 1880, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[52] “Bay Shore,” South Side Signal (Babylon), May 8, 1880, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[53] “Bay Shore,” South Side Signal (Babylon), February 25, 1882, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[54] “Bay Shore,” South Side Signal (Babylon), April 15, 1882, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[55] “Bay Shore,” South Side Signal (Babylon), May 6, 1882, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[56] “Bay Shore,” South Side Signal (Babylon), June 24, 1882, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[57] “Bay Shore,” South Side Signal (Babylon), February 2, 1907, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[58] “Bay Shore’s New Depot,” South Side Signal (Babylon), August 25, 1911, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[59] “Bay Shore,” South Side Signal (Babylon), Oct 6, 1911, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[60] Vincent F. Seyfried, The Long Island Rail Road: A Comprehensive History, vol. 6, The Golden Age 1881-1900 (Garden City, NY: Seyfried, 1984), 270.

[61] Don Smith, “Bay Shore Depot Vote Delayed,” Newsday (Suffolk  Edition), December 7, 1983.

[62] “LIRR Project in Bay Shore,” Newsday (Suffolk  Edition), December 11, 1983.

[63] Seyfried, The Long Island Rail Road: A Comprehensive History, vol. 1, 77.

[64] “Long Island Rail Road: Alphabetical Station Listing and History,” Trains are Fun, accessed July 16, 2013, http://www.trainsarefun.com/lirrphotos/LIRR%20Station%20History.htm.

[65] Seyfried, The Long Island Rail Road: A Comprehensive History, vol. 6, 270.

[66] “Islip to Get New Colonial Style R.R. Station,” Islip Bulletin, June 27, 1963, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com; “Islip Depot 1910,” Trains are Fun, accessed September 27, 2015, http://www.trainsarefun.com/lirr/lirrshelter/islipdepot1910.jpg; http://www.trainsarefun.com/lirr/lirrshelter/islipdepot1910.jpg; “Islip c. 1940s,” Trains are Fun, accessed September 27, 2015, http://www.trainsarefun.com/lirr/lirrshelter/shelter%20islip%202_600x400.jpg.

[67] “New Railroad Depot to be Dedicated Saturday,” Islip Bulletin, November 21, 1963, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com; “Town to Enlarge Parking Area: After 72 Years Islip Gets New R.R. Depot,” Islip Bulletin, December 12, 1963, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[68] Railroad Video Productions, Long Island Rail Road: Main Line to Speonk (Leola, PA: Railroad Video Productions, 1994).

[69] Bayles, Historical and Descriptive Sketches, 217.

[70] “Historic Long Island,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), September 12, 1952, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[71] “Youngport,” South Side Signal (Babylon), April 6, 1872, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[72] “Islip Town Record,” South Side Signal (Babylon), July 10, 1897, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[73] “Islip Town Record,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), July 17, 1897, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[74] Seyfried, The Long Island Rail Road: A Comprehensive History, vol. 6, 270; Box 2, Book 6, Robert M. Emery Long Island Rail Road Collection, Special Collections, Stony Brook University Libraries.

[75] “Long Island Rail Road Making Plans for Erecting New Station at Great River,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), April 6, 1945, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[76] “Great River Depot will be Rebuilt,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), November 23, 1945, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[77] “East Islip Depot; Great River Residents also Fight Proposed Change in Location,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), March 1, 1946, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[78] “Petition for Depot at East Islip Is Denied; will Rebuild at Great River,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), March 29, 1946, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com; “Great River,” Patchogue Advance, May 16, 1946, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com; “LIRR Starts Station Painting Program with ‘People’s Colors’,” Patchogue Advance, July 10, 1958, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com; Railroad Video Productions, Long Island Rail Road: Main Line to Speonk; “Great River Station View SE towards Connetquot Ave. 1966 ,” Trains are Fun, accessed September 27, 2015, http://www.trainsarefun.com/lirr/great%20river/sta-grtriver-1966.jpg; “Great River Sept 1944,” Trains are Fun, accessed September 27, 2015, http://www.trainsarefun.com/lirr/lirrshelter/GreatRiverSept1944.jpg.

[79] Seyfried, The Long Island Rail Road: A Comprehensive History, vol. 1, 79.

[80] “History of Oakdale Station,” essay on display at Oakdale Station (Oakdale, NY).

[81] “Here and There,” South Side Signal (Babylon), April 5, 1890, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com; Railroad Video Productions, Long Island Rail Road: Main Line to Speonk; “The News of Sayville,” Brooklyn Eagle Online, November 29, 1890, <a title=”http://nyshistoricnewspapers.org/lccn/sn83031151/1890-11-29/ed-1/seq-1.pdf&#8221; href=”http://nyshistoricnewspapers.org/lccn/sn83031151/1890-11-29/ed-1/seq-1.pdf.

[82] Seyfried, The Long Island Rail Road: A Comprehensive History, vol. 1, 79.

[83] Edwards, History of Early Sayville.

[84] “A New Depot Next,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), December 7, 1900, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[85] “R.R. Commission at Sayville: Come to Inspect the Proposed Depot Sites,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), February 15, 1901, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[86] “Application Denied: Railroad Commission Will Not Have Our Depot Moved,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), February 22, 1901, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[87] “A Fine New Depot,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), May 31, 1901, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[88] “Sayville to Have a Fine Building,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), June 14, 1901, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[89] “Sayville Misrepresented: Railroad Men Told People Were Satisfied so Moved the Depot,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), October 20, 1905, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[90] “New Depot in Use at Last: Thrown Open For the Use of the Public on Tuesday,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), August 3, 1906, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com; Railroad Video Productions, Long Island Rail Road: Main Line to Speonk; Box 2, Book 6, Robert M. Emery Long Island Rail Road Collection; Noel Rubinton, “Vandals Give Stations a Rough Ride,” Newsday(1940-1986), March 26, 1981, http://www.proquest.com.

[91] Somini Sengupta, “End of the Line for L.I.R.R.’s 10 Loneliest Stops,” New York Times (1923-Current file), March 15, 1998, http://www.proquest.com.

[92] “Changing Train Stations,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), August 1, 1996, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[93] John T. McQuiston, “Error in Design Makes L.I.R.R. Platforms Too High,” New York Times (1923-Current file), December 19, 1995, http://www.proquest.com; Historical Landmark Preservation Committee, Great River Depot (Historical Marker, Great River, NY); MTA Long Island Rail Road, Timetable No.1, effective: 12:01 a.m. Monday, June 18, 2001 for the Government of Employees Only (MTA Long Island Rail Road: New York, 2001).

[94] “LIRR Moving Along,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), September 25, 1997, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[95] “Railroad Station Reconstruction Underway,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), March 23, 2000, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com; “Sayville Station Renovations Completed,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), January 4, 2001, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com; Linda Lauzzi, “Train Stations Get Makeovers,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), October 31, 2002, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com; David D. Morrison and Valerie Pakaluk, Images of Rail: Long Island Rail Road Station (Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2003), 93.

[96] “Railroad Station Reconstruction Underway”; “Sayville Station Renovations Completed”; “Train Stations Get Makeovers.”

[97] Long Island Rail Road, Long Island Rail Road Time Tables, schedule in effect 2:00 AM September 20, 1942 (New York: Long Island Rail Road, 1942), Montauk Branch.

[98] MTA Long Island Rail Road, Long Island Rail Road Timetable No. 5 Appendix A General Notices, effective May 22, 1978 (New York: Long Island Rail Road, 1978) , Montauk Branch.

[99] MTA Long Island Rail Road, Montauk Branch Timetable effective May 20, 2013 (New York: Metropolitan Transportation Authority, 2013).

[100] Stewart Ain, “Ticket Agents now Helping Riders Use Machines,” New York Times (1923-Current file), August 4, 1996, http://www.proquest.com; “2 LIRR Stations Escape Closing,” Newsday (1940-1987), September 10, 1982, http://www.proquest.com.

[101] “Long Island Rail Road Ticket Vendors Out Again,” Suffolk County News, September 12, 1996, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[102] Carol Paquette, “L.I.R.R. Moving to Drop 32 More Ticket Windows,” New York Times (1923-Current file), January 14, 1996, http://www.proquest.com; Phil Mintz, “LIRR Machine Replace Vendors,” Newsday (Combined Editions), November 7, 1996, http://www.proquest.com

[103] Seyfried, The Long Island Rail Road: A Comprehensive History, vol. 1, 79.

[104] “South Side Railroad of L.I.,” South Side Signal, July 14, 1869, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[105] “Islip Local Record,” South Side Signal, September 1, 1869, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[106] Bayard Cutting Arboretum, Neighbor across the Way, New York State Park Marker (Great River, NY).

[107] “South Side Rail Road,” South Side Signal (Babylon), November 23, 1872, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[108] Seyfried, The Long Island Rail Road: A Comprehensive History, vol. 6, 270.

[109] Bayard Cutting Arboretum, Locust Bridge, New York State Park Marker (Great River, NY).

[110] Seyfried, The Long Island Rail Road: A Comprehensive History, vol. 1, 79.

[111] “Bayport Wants a New Depot,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), May 24, 1901, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[112] “Bayport’s New Depot,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), August 14, 1903, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[113] “Bayport,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), November 21, 1902, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[114] “Bayport,” Suffolk County News (Sayville), September 4, 1903, http://apa3.olivesoftware.com.

[115] Seyfried, The Long Island Rail Road: A Comprehensive History, vol. 6, 270; Ron Zeil and George Foster, Steel Rails to the Sunrise (New York: Amereon Ltd, 1987), 281.

[116] Long Island Rail Road, Long Island Rail Road Time Tables…September 20, 1942, Montauk Branch.

[117] MTA The Long Island Rail Road Company, Long Island Rail Road Timetable No. 4, effective 12:01 AM, Monday, November 25, 1968 (New York: Long Island Rail Road, 1968) , Montauk Branch.

[118] MTA Long Island Rail Road, Patchogue, Jamaica, Brooklyn & New York, Effective October 13, 1979 (New York: Metropolitan Transportation Authority, 1979).

[119] Robert M. Emery Long Island Rail Road Collection, Box 18, Special Collections, Stony Brook University Libraries, Long Island Rail Road Employee Timetables, Schedule in Effect May12, 1980, by Long Island Rail Road (New York: Long Island Rail Road, 1980), Montauk Branch.

[120] Christopher Callahan, “LIRR to Consider Closing Blue Point, Bayport Stops,” Newsday, August 6, 1980.

[121] “Long Island Rail Road: Alphabetical Station Listing.”

[122] Noel Rubinton, “LIRR ‘Strike’ End in Squabble,” Newsday, September 4, 1980.

[123]  “Brief History of Dowling College’s Rudolph Campus,” Dowling College, accessed July 16, 2013, http://www.dowling.edu/about/history.shtm.

[124] “About Us,” Bayard Cutting Arboretum, accessed July 16, 2013, http://www.bayardcuttingarboretum.com.

[125]  “History of Sagtikos Manor,” Sagtikos Manor Historical Society, accessed July 16, 2013, http://www.sagtikosmanor.com/history.html.

[126] “Heckscher State Park,” New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, accessed July 16, 2013, http://www.nysparks.com/parks/136.

[127] Aileen Jacobson, “Grand House, Home to Many, Reveals Itself,” New York Times (1923-Current file), Oct 24, 2010, http://www.proquest.com.

[128] “History of the Islip Seal,” Town of Islip, accessed on September 8, 2013, http://www.townofislip-ny.gov/about-islip/history-of-the-islip-seal#.

 

Next page: North Fork Rail Stations: A Brief History of Southold Town

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