Johnson, Review on Mary L. Booth

Suzanne Johnson on Tricia Foley, Mary L. Booth: The Story of an Extraordinary 19th-Century Woman (2018). 239 p. Illustrations.  $44.99. Available from amazon.com. ISBN 9781986346245 In every town on Long Island, there’s at least one old house, set close to the road, maybe with overgrown vegetation, and looking a bit neglected.  Some of these old […]

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Johnson Review, Long Island Beaches

Suzanne Johnson on Kristen J. Nyitray. Long Island Beaches (Postcard History Series). Charleston, SC:  Arcadia Publishing, 2019.  127 p.  Bibliography. ISBN:139781467103299, $21.99 At first glance, you might think, ‘why a book about Long Island’s beaches?’ This book is different. Not only a postcard history, it is nearly a guidebook to Long Island’s most attractive and […]

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Ruff, Saving Fire Island from Robert Moses (Review)

Joshua Ruff on Christopher Verga, Saving Fire Island from Robert Moses: The Fight for a National Seashore (Charleston, SC: The History Press, 2019), 126 pp., Notes, Bibliography, Soft Cover $21.99. Soon after Robert Caro’s The Power Broker was published in 1974, 86-year-old Robert Moses wrote an extraordinary 23-page rebuttal to the Pulitzer Prize winning biography […]

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Osborne, Abandoned Long Island (Review)

  Daniel Osborne on Richard Panchyk, Abandoned Long Island (Dover: America Through Time, 2019), 96 pp., $18.99 Abandoned Long Island, by Richard Panchyk concerns itself with eleven different locations in both Nassau and Suffolk County, exploring structures and transportation routes that are still present, in one way or another, but no longer in use.  Some […]

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Grunder, Long Island State Hospitals (Review)

Sarah Lucinda Grunder on Joseph M. Galante, Images of America: Long Island State Hospitals (Charleston, S.C.: Arcadia Publishing, 2019), 128 pp. $21.99 By the 1950s, Long Island was at the center of mental health care in the United States, with more than 32,000 patients residing in three state institutions separated by only 11 miles. How […]

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Review of Books, Johnson and Clemens

Review of Books Charles G. Backfish on Suzanne Johnson and David Clemens, Camp Upton (Charleston: Arcadia Publishing, 2018), 128 pp., Index, Bibliography. $15.99. The overall story of Camp Upton in Yaphank as a soldier training facility has been known to some Long Islanders and has appeared with frequency in articles connected with the centennial of […]

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Review of Books, Sandford

Review of Books Tara Rider on Anne Sandford, Reluctant Reformer: Nathan Sanford in the Era of the Early Republic (Albany: SUNY Press, 2017), 216 pp., Index, Bibliography, Hardcover $29.95. President John Adams’ note to his son in which he says “I take it for granted that public Virtue is no longer to rule: but Ambition […]

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Review of Books, Fitzpatrick

Review of Books Suzanne Johnson on Kevin C. Fitzpatrick,World War I New York: A Guide to the City’s Enduring Ties to the Great War (Guilford, CT: Globe Pequot Press, 2017), 189 pp., index, bibliography. $16.95. Also available as an ebook. As the nation commemorated the 100th anniversary of the U.S. entry into World War I […]

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Review of Books, Swanson and Bowman

Tara Rider on R. Lawrence Swanson and Malcolm J. Bowman, Between Stony Brook Harbor Tides: The Natural History of a Long Island Pocket Bay (Albany, New York: State University of New York Press, 2016). Between Stony Brook Harbor Tides, by R. Lawrence Swanson and Malcolm J. Bowman, investigates the historical and ecological significance this harbor […]

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Review of Books, Murphy

Review of Books Robert F. Murphy, The Three Graces of Raymond Street: Murder, Madness, Sex, and Politics in 1870s Brooklyn. Albany, New York: State University of New York Press, 2015. Pp. x, 243. $24.95. The three graces of the title are three women charged with murder who served time awaiting trial or verdict in the […]

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Review of Books, Arfin

Arfin, Paul M. Unfinished Business: Social Action in Suburbia, Long Island NY, 1945-2014. Self-published, 2015. $39.95 In the post-World War II era, Long Island rapidly began to evolve from a relatively rural landscape, to one which, by the latter decades of the twentieth century, came to typify the fully developed, modern American suburb. Due in […]

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Review of Books

Review of Books Nancy Shoemaker, Native American Whale Men and the World: Indigenous Encounters and the Contingency of Race (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2015) ISBN: 978-1-4696-2257-6 Nancy Shoemaker, ed., Living with Whales: Documents and Oral Histories of Native New England Whaling History (Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2014) ISBN: 978-1-62534-081-8 Two new […]

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Peconic Bay review, Rider

Marilyn E. Weigold Peconic Bay: Four Centuries of History on Long Island’s North and South Forks. Syracuse: Syracuse University Press, 2015. Pp. 336. ISBN: 9780815610458. Cloth, $24.95. Whether you are stranger to the East End or are intimately familiar with the area, Marilyn E. Weigold’s work describing “one of the last great places in the […]

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Smugglers, Bootleggers, and Scofflaws, Conrad review

Ellen NicKenzie Lawson. Smugglers, Bootleggers, and Scofflaws: Prohibition and New York City. Albany: SUNY Press, 2013. Pp. 151. ISBN: 9781438448169. Paper, $19.95 The Prohibition Era brings to mind the Mafia and the government G-men who sought their elimination. But there is also a maritime component to this story. Ellen NicKenzie Lawson examines the movement of […]

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A Most Glorious Ride, review Wynn

Edward P. Kohn, editor. A Most Glorious Ride: The Diaries of Theodore Roosevelt, 1877-1886. Albany: SUNY Press. 2014. Pp. 322. Photos, index, glossary. ISBN: 9781438455150. Hardcover, $29.95. On Saturday, April 1 1877, while at Newtonville, Massachusetts, Theodore Roosevelt entered into his diary: “Arvicola riparia. Hesperomys leucopus. Melospiza palustris. Loxia curvirostra. Salamandra. Rana damitans and palustris. […]

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Long Island and the Civil War, Hammond review

Harrison Hunt and Bill Bleyer. Long Island and the Civil War: Queens, Nassau and Suffolk Counties During the War Between the States. Charleston, SC: The History Press, 2015. Pp. 170, photographs. ISBN: 9781626197718. Paper, $21.99. This book fills in an important gap in Long Island’s history. No major Civil War battle ever occurred on Long […]

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Gardens of Eden review, Ruff

Robert B. MacKay, editor. Gardens of Eden: Long Island’s Early Twentieth-Century Planned Communities. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2015. Copyright by the Society for the Preservation of Long Island Antiquities. Pp. 303. Illustrations, index. ISBN: 9780393733211. Hardcover, $65.00. Oh, let us fly without delay Into the country far away, Where, free from all this […]

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George Washington’s Commando review, Becker

Richard F. Welch. General Washington’s Commando: Benjamin Tallmadge in the Revolutionary War. North Carolina: McFarland, 2014. Pp. 204. Photos, notes, bibliography, index. ISBN 978-0-7864-7963-4. Softcover, $35.00. Richard Welch offers a comprehensive biography of Setauket native Benjamin Tallmadge, an important, though little appreciated, figure in the history of Revolutionary War spy-craft and intelligence gathering. His book […]

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Women in Long Island’s Past review, May

Natalie A. Naylor. Women in Long Island’s Past: A History of Eminent Ladies and Everyday Lives. Charleston: The History Press, 2012. Pp. 192. ISBN: 9781609494995. Paper, $19.99. Natalie Naylor has written an excellent account of the often overlooked role of women in Long Island’s history. As the title suggests, it includes both women whose names […]

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Rosenthal review, Running on Empty

John A. Strong. Running on Empty: The Rise and Fall of Southampton College, 1963-2005. Albany: Excelsior Editions, SUNY Press, 2013. Pp. 325. ISBN: 9781438446967. $85.00 cloth, $29.95 paper. This is an exceptionally well-written narrative history of the Southampton branch of Long Island University. In many ways, the tale of the Southampton campus, an outlying branch […]

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Rosenthal review, Farmingdale State College

Frank J. Cavaioli. Farmingdale State College, A History. Albany: SUNY Press, 2012. Pp. 316. ISBN: 9781438443676. Cloth, $29.95. Electronic, $29.95. Before discussing this comprehensive history of what is now Farmingdale State College, I offer two general comments. One is that every college and university deserves to have a history – one that recounts the tale […]

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Johnson, reviews of Port Jefferson and Yaphank

Robert Maggio and Earlene O’Hare. Port Jefferson. Charleston, SC: Images of America, Arcadia Publishing, 2013. Pp. 127, photographs. ISBN: 0738598178. Paper, $21.99. Tricia Foley and Karen Mouzakes. Yaphank. Charleston, SC: Images of America, Arcadia Publishing, 2012. Pp. 127, photographs. ISBN: 0738592951. Paper, $21.99.    Recently, I read in the real estate section of a Long Island […]

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review, The Unkechaug Indians of Eastern Long Island

The Unkechaug Indians of Eastern Long Island:  A History.  By John A. Strong.  Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2011. 332 pp., list of illustrations, preface, appendix, notes, references, and index.  $29.95 hardcover. John Strong might be called the dean of Long Island Indian studies.  Over the course of his career, he has produced several excellent histories of Long Island […]

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review, Rochdale Village

Peter Eisenstadt, Rochdale Village: Robert Moses, 6,000 Families, and New York City’s Great Experiment in Integrated Housing.  Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2010.   Pp. 323. Maps, photographs, bibliography, and index.  ISBN: 0801448786. $35.00. The title of Peter Eisenstadt’s new history, Rochdale Village: Robert Moses, 6,000 Families, and New York City’s Great Experiment in Integrated […]

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review, sound rising

Richard A. Radune. Sound Rising: Long Island Sound at the Forefront of America’s Struggle for Independence. Branford, Connecticut: Research in Time Publications, 2011. Pp. 308. Maps, illustrations, bibliographical references, notes and index. ISBN: 9780976434115. $20.00. “The year was 1750 and it was the dawn of Long Island Sound’s Golden Age” (20), writes Richard A. Radune in […]

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Willie K. Vanderbilt II: A Biography

Steven H. Gittelman. Willie K. Vanderbilt II: A Biography.  Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company, Inc., 2010. Pp. 264. Photos, notes, bibliography, index. ISBN: 9780786447770. $38.00. As Steven Gittelman, a board member of the Suffolk County Vanderbilt Museum admits in his acknowledgement and preface, Willie K. Vanderbilt II: A Biography represents a parallel journey. On […]

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Colonel Roosevelt

Edmund Morris.  Colonel Roosevelt.  New York, NY:  Random House, 2010.  Pp. 766.  Photographs, bibliography, endnotes, and index.  ISBN: 9780375504877.  $35.00.     Colonel Roosevelt is masterful.  Edmund Morris’s third volume in his epic project on Theodore Roosevelt has the prose and the dramatic narrative of history of which timeless biographies consist.  Morris’s first volume, The […]

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Ever Eastward

Geoffrey K. Fleming. Ever Eastward: Alfred H. Cosden and His Estate at Southold. Southold: Southold Historical Society, 2010. Pp. 59. Photographs, bibliographic references. $24.99.     Geoffrey K. Fleming’s book Ever Eastward is a delightful account of the history of Alfred Costen’s estate in Southold. The inclusion of “Eastward” in the name Cosden chose for […]

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Long Island High School Sports

Christopher R. Vaccaro. Long Island High School Sports. Mount Pleasant, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2009.  Photographs and illustrations.  Pp 128. ISBN:  9780738565569.  $21.99.     Teams of fresh-faced youngsters clad in the colors of their respective high schools take to athletic fields to battle for school and personal pride. The din of drum-laden fight songs cuts […]

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Boussios and Boussios on Gangs in Garden City

Sarah Garland. Gangs in Garden City: How Immigration, Segregation, and Youth Violence are Changing America’s Suburbs. New York, NY: Nation Books, 2009. Notes, index. Pp. 320. ISBN 1568584040. $26.95. Are there gangs in Garden City? Sarah Garland digs into the heart of Long Island’s suburbs to uncover the truth, the fact that gangs do not exist […]

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Smithtown

Bradley Harris, Kiernon Lannon and Joshua Ruff. Smithtown. Mount Pleasant, S.C.: Arcadia Press, 2009. Illustrations. Pp 128. ISBN: 0738564532. $21.99. The Township of Smithtown deserves recognition for its own story, and this book is ably put together by three authors who keenly know and embrace their subject. Settled in 1665, the town’s name derives from […]

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Twilight at the World of Tomorrow: Genius, Madness, Murder, and the 1939 World’s Fair on the Brink of War

James Mauro. Twilight at the World of Tomorrow: Genius, Madness, Murder, and the 1939 World’s Fair on the Brink of War. New York: Ballantine Books, 2010. Photographs, bibliographical references and index. Pp. 401. ISBN: 9780345512147. $28.00. New York’s 1939-1940 World’s Fair has long staked its claim on American popular memory, and seven decades on, it […]

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Sag Harbor

Colson Whitehead. Sag Harbor. New York: Doubleday, 2009. Pp. 273. ISBN: 0385527659. $24.95. Colson Whitehead is rapidly emerging as one of the major literary voices of the new millennium. Like Philip Roth a generation earlier, Whitehead writes elegantly and eloquently about what it feels like to be an upwardly mobile outsider in pursuit of the […]

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Presidential Plunge: Theodore Roosevelt, The Plunger Submarine, and the United States Navy

Adam M. Grohman, introduction by Henry J. Hendrix II, Commander US Navy. Presidential Plunge: Theodore Roosevelt, The Plunger Submarine, and the United States Navy. Locust Valley, NY: Underwater Historical Research Society, 2009. Pp. 168. Photographs, notes, appendices, index. ISBN: 9780578031224. $15.95. Theodore Roosevelt aficionados will delight in this thorough account of the president’s descent in […]

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Hotels and Inns of Long Island’s North Fork

Geoffrey K. Fleming and Amy Kasuga Folk, 2009. Hotels and Inns of Long Island’s North Fork. Charleston, S.C.: The History Press. Photographs. Pp. 156. ISBN: 1596297255. $21.99. In their delightful book, Hotels and Inns of Long Island’s North Fork, Geoffrey K. Fleming and Amy Kasuga Folk have captured the spirit of a vacation destination that […]

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Long Island Moderns: Art and Architecture on the North Shore and Beyond

Kenneth Wayne and Erik Neil, editors. Long Island Moderns: Art and Architecture on the North Shore and Beyond. Huntington, NY: Heckscher Museum of Art (Distributed by University Press of New England, Lebanon, NH), 2009. Illustrations, bibliography. Pp. 128. ISBN: 9781879195158. $29.95. In their essay “Learning from Levittown” Robert Venturi and Denis Scott Brown use that […]

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The Long Island Motor Parkway

Howard Kroplick (foreword by Florence Ogg). Vanderbilt Cup Races of Long Island. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2008. 128 Pp. Photographs. ISBN: 073855751X. $21.99. Despite its occasional reputation as a highway with shopping malls, Long Island is a place rooted in a history both fascinating and varied. One strain of that history concerns the first international […]

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The Fire Island National Seashore: a History

Lee E. Koppelman and Seth Forman. The Fire Island National Seashore: a History. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press, 2008. Pp. 208. Photographs, notes, bibliography, index. ISBN: 0791473422. $21.95. In 1839, Benjamin Thompson, Long Island’s eminent historian and natural scientist, believed that Long Island was created from the sea. We now know differently. […]

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Long Island Landscapes and the Women Who Designed Them

Cynthia Zaitzevsky. Long Island Landscapes and the Women Who Designed Them. Society for the Preservation of Long Island Antiquities with W.W. Norton & Company, New York & London, 2009. 304 Pp. Black-and-white photographs, plans, 14 pages of color plates, appendix of project lists. ISBN: 0393731243. $75.00. For half a century, between 1890 and 1940, Long […]

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The Neighborhoods of Queens

Claudia Gryvatz Copquin, introduction by Kenneth T. Jackson. The Neighborhoods of Queens. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2007 (paperback 2009). 259 Pp. Maps, photographs, timeline, bibliography, and index. ISBN: 0300112998. $35.00. The Neighborhoods of Queens offers an astonishing array of surprises in its descriptions of all 56 neighborhoods in Queens. Queens Village, we learn, […]

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A Shared Aesthetic: Artists of Long Island’s North Fork

Geoffrey K. Fleming and Sara Evans, et. al. A Shared Aesthetic: Artists of Long Island’s North Fork. Southold, New York: Southold Historical Society, in association with Hudson Hills Press, 2008. 169 illustrations, artists’ biographies, bibliography, index. Pp. 250. ISBN: 155595300X. $50.00. According to Fleming, the director of the Southold Historical Society and the lead author […]

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Harbor Hill: Portrait of a House

Richard Guy Wilson. Harbor Hill: Portrait of a House. New York: Society for the Preservation of Long Island Antiquities with W.W. Norton Company, 2008. Pp.178. Photographs, illustrations, architectural designs, endnotes, index. ISBN: 0393732169. $60.00. Ever since the destruction of Harbor Hill, the subject of this once grand estate on Long Island’s Gold Coast has deserved […]

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