Local History Books
Saved at the Seawall
Saved at the Seawall is the definitive history of the largest ever waterborne evacuation. Jessica DuLong reveals the dramatic story of how the New York Harbor maritime community heroically delivered stranded commuters, residents, and visitors out of harm's way. Even before the US Coast Guard called for all available boats, tugs, ferries, dinner boats, and other vessels had sped to the rescue from points all across New York Harbor. In less than nine hours, captains and crews transported nearly half a million people from Manhattan.
Anchored in eyewitness accounts and written by a mariner who served at Ground Zero, Saved at the Seawall weaves together the personal stories of people rescued that day with those of the mariners who saved them. DuLong describes the inner workings of New York Harbor and reveals the collaborative power of its close-knit community. Her chronicle of those crucial hours, when hundreds of thousands of lives were at risk, highlights how resourcefulness and basic human goodness triumphed over turmoil on one of America's darkest days.
An Entertainment Weekly Best Book of May 2019A TIME Magazine Best Book of May 2019
A Cosmopolitan Best Book of May 2019An Oprah Magazine Best LGBTQ Book of 2019
A gripping portrait of life in a Montauk summer house--a debut memoir of first love, identity and self-discovery among a group of friends who became family.
They call Montauk the end of the world, a spit of land jutting into the Atlantic. The house was a ramshackle split-level set on a hill, and each summer thirty one people would sleep between its thin walls and shag carpets. Against the moonlight the house's octagonal roof resembled a bee's nest. It was dubbed The Hive.
In 2013, John Glynn joined the share house. Packing his duffel for that first Memorial Day Weekend, he prayed for clarity. At 27, he was crippled by an all-encompassing loneliness, a feeling he had carried in his heart for as long as he could remember. John didn't understand the loneliness. He just knew it was there. Like the moon gone dark.
OUT EAST is the portrait of a summer, of the Hive and the people who lived in it, and John's own reckoning with a half-formed sense of self. From Memorial Day to Labor Day, The Hive was a center of gravity, a port of call, a home. Friendships, conflicts, secrets and epiphanies blossomed within this tightly woven friend group and came to define how they would live out the rest of their twenties and beyond.
Blending the sand-strewn milieu of George Howe Colt's The Big House, the radiant aching of Olivia Liang's The Lonely City, OUT EAST is a keenly wrought story of love and transformation, longing and escape in our own contemporary moment.
"An unforgettable story told with feeling and humor and above all with the razor-sharp skill of a delicate and highly gifted writer." --Andre Aciman, New York Times bestselling author of Call Me by Your Name
"Out East is full of intimacy and hope and frustration and joy, an extraordinary tale of emotional awakening and lacerating ambivalence, a confession of self-doubt that becomes self-knowledge." --Andrew Solomon, National Book Award winner
America's First Black Poet; Jupiter Hammon of Long Island
Colleges, schools, libraries and military bases in the US and abroad have been searching for ways to celebrate notable persons of color and to provide positive programs to promote racial harmony in our communities. "America's First Black Poet; Jupiter Hammon of Long Island," published by Outskirts Press in 2020, includes his poems, prose pieces and new information about Jupiter Hammon's life, including photos of the homes where Hammon lived. While Hammon is the first black poet to publish his own verse, this book also includes recognition of Phillis Wheatley as the first female black poet to publish her own works. It includes "Hammon's Address to Miss Phillis Wheatley," both his poem and a four part Gospel Choir arrangement available for use. This book informs readers about what life was like in the 18th century, and how Jupiter Hammon, a slave, was able to travel at will, publish his poetry, and be a preacher to his intended audience, "the brethren," his fellow slaves, at a time when few slaves could travel. "Celebrating Black Poetry Day," offers suggestions for October 17th programs or observances. A list is given of the 34 noted black poets who have spoken and given readings at Plattsburgh, NY, State University since 1984 as part of their ongoing Black Poetry day celebrations.
With the publication on Christmas Day, 1760, of the 88 line broadside poem "An Evening Thought," Jupiter Hammon became the first published African American contributor to American poetry. A natural intelligence and a deep religious fervor led Hammon to publish additional poetry and prose, and his "Address to the Negroes of the State of New York," which first appeared in 1787, was later reprinted and distributed by the Pennsylvania Society for Promoting the Abolition of Slavery. Jupiter Hammon spent most of his long life on Lloyd Neck, later a part of Huntington, Long Island, where he was a slave to the Lloyd family. Some of his most productive years were spent in Hartford during the American Revolution. With newly found genealogical information on Jupiter, this present volume with new found poems has become the most complete and authoritative work on this early American black poet.
Hammon's poetry reveals his joyous intoxication with religion, and in this vein he precedes the composers of those Black spirituals which are today an integral part of American culture. This collection of his poems and writings now includes two newly discovered poems found in New York Historical Society Library and in the Sterling Memorial Library of Yale University. Ransom notes that Hammon used several codes and indirect ways to let his fellow slaves know his real feelings about slavery. He used his Biblical knowledge as a cover.
The first book devoted to this landmark of architecture, urban planning, and social engineering
Situated in the borough of Queens, New York, Sunnyside Gardens has been an icon of urbanism and planning since its inception in the 1920s. Not the most beautifully planned community, nor the most elegant, and certainly not the most perfectly preserved, Sunnyside Gardens nevertheless endures as significant both in terms of the planning principles that inspired its creators and in its subsequent history. Why this garden suburb was built and how it has fared over its first century is at the heart of Sunnyside Gardens.
Reform-minded architects and planners in England and the United States knew too well the social and environmental ills of the cities around them at the turn of the twentieth century. Garden cities gained traction across the Atlantic before the Great War, and its principles were modified by American pragmatism to fit societal conditions and applied almost as a matter of faith by urban planners for much of the twentieth century. The designers of Sunnyside-- Clarence Stein, Henry Wright, Frederick Ackerman, and landscape architect Marjorie Cautley--crafted a residential community intended to foster a sense of community among residents.
Richly illustrated throughout with historic and contemporary photographs as well as architectural plans of the houses, blocks, and courts, Sunnyside Gardens first explores the planning of Sunnyside, beginning with the English garden-city movement and its earliest incarnations built around London. Chapters cover the planning and building of Sunnyside and its construction by the City Housing Corporation, the design of the homes and gardens, and the tragedy of the Great Depression, when hundreds of families lost their homes. The second section examine how the garden suburbs outside London have been preserved and how aesthetic regulation is enforced in New York. The history of the preservation of Sunnyside Gardens is discussed in depth, as is the controversial proposal to place the Aluminaire House, an innovative housing prototype from the 1930s, on the only vacant site in the historic district.
Sunnyside Gardens pays homage to a time when far-sighted and socially conscious architects and planners sought to build communities, not merely buildings, a spirit that has faded to near-invisibility
Hard Work: My Life as a Clammer on the Great South Bay
The story of a bayman's life of hard work and interesting adventures. Written and self published by Steve Kuhn.
Saving Fire Island from Robert Moses
Small coastal communities stand up to the giant of mid-20th century urban development in this chronicle of a true David and Goliath drama.
With its unspoiled, tranquil shorelines, Fire Island has been an oasis for vacationers for well over a century. But from the late 1930s into the early 1960s, it was an obsession for Robert Moses, the political power broker and "master builder" who reshaped much of New York. His urban development projects helped create Long Island’s suburbs, and he dreamed of turning Fire Island into an extension of Ocean Parkway.
Standing up to those ambitions were the seventeen individualistic communities of Fire Island, unified in their love for their sun-washed sandy beaches. To maintain a traditional way of life with limited access to motor vehicles, the community began the fight for federal protection through the creation of the Fire Island National Seashore.
Lost British Forts of Long Island
When the Revolutionary War broke out and New York City had fallen in 1776, the forces of the king of Great Britain developed a network of forts along the length of Long Island to defend the New York area and create a front to Patriot forces across the Sound in Connecticut. Fort Franklin on Lloyd's Neck became a refugee camp for Loyalists and saw frequent rebel attacks. In Huntington, a sacred burial ground was desecrated, and Fort Golgotha was erected in its place, using tombstones as baking hearths. In Setauket along the northern shore, the Presbyterian church was commandeered and made the central fortified structure of the town. Author David M. Griffin uncovers the lost history and harrowing stories of Long Island's British forts.
George Washington’s 1790 Grand Tour of Long Island
"After being elected president, George Washington set out to tour the new nation, which was desperate for a unifying symbol. He spent five days on Long Island in April 1790, an area recovering from seven years of devastating British occupation. Washington saw it all, from Brooklyn to Patchogue to Setauket and back. He was honored at each stop and wrote extensive diary entries about his impressions of the carriage stops for food, overnight stays at taverns and private homes, as well as his vision for the future of the region. Author Dr. Joanne S. Grasso traces this momentous journey"--Back cover.
Behind the Bottle
Profiling owners, winemakers, and personalities from around the country and the world, Behind the Bottle is a fun and intriguing look at the people who have made Long Island into one of the hottest wine regions in the country.
Long Island has been a leader in winemaking since 1975. In the last forty years, Long Island's rise has been meteoric. Long a rural region famed for their duck and their potatoes, Long Island, now visited by 1.3 million people each year, has carved out a wine country second to none. With highly acclaimed wines garnering rave reviews from Wine Spectator, Wine Enthusiast, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and many other publications, Long Island wines have been celebrated around the country and across the Atlantic ocean. Here, Edible East End editor Eileen M. Duffy profiles winemakers and wineries that have received this high acclaim, and shares their stories. Men and women from as far away as California, France, even New Zealand have come here to create a wine country whose wines, including Chardonnay, Sauvingon Blanc, Merlot, and Meritages among others, are second to none. BEHIND THE BOTTLE illustrates the fascinating story from the region's birth to its zenith.
Women in Long Island's Past
Women have been part of Long Island's past for thousands of years but are nearly invisible in the records and history books. From pioneering doctors to dazzling aviatrixes, author Natalie A. Naylor brings these larger-than-life but little-known heroines out of the lost pages of island history. Anna Symmes Harrison, Julia Gardiner Tyler, Edith Kermit Roosevelt and Eleanor Roosevelt all served as first lady of the United States, and all had Long Island roots. Beloved children's author Frances Hodgson Burnett wrote The Secret Garden here, and hundreds of local suffragists fought for their right to vote in the early twentieth century. Discover these and other stories of the remarkable women of Long Island.
About Local History at Sayville Library
The Sayville Library Long Island Collection is home to over 2300 items which are cataloged and searchable through the online catalog. Additional items of historic value are housed in our archives and available to see upon request and the Library regularly creates displays using items from the collection. We also have several digital collections, including local newspapers, postcards, and oral histories, which are available online for immediate access.
The mission of our special collection is to preserve items of significance to our unique location on Long Island. We look for records, photographs or memorabilia that help us reconstruct the past and foster an accurate description of what life was like for our predecessors. Please see our brochure for more information on donating to our special collection.
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