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The Way It Was for March 9, 2023

Thu, 03/09/2023 - 09:49

125 Years Ago        1898

From The East Hampton Star, March 11

On Monday a whale was sighted off our coast and a rally was made. Only three boats put out, many of the men who usually go being away and others sick. The crews were out all day and followed the whale as far as Bridgehampton and there gave up the chase, as the whale put out to sea. It is said to have been the largest whale ever seen along the coast.

We take the following data from the Brooklyn Eagle almanac:

Amagansett — Population, 600; Bridge Hampton — Population, 1,400; East Hampton — Population, 1,250; Sagaponack — Population, 400; Sag Harbor — Population, 3,000; Southampton — Population, 1,500; Springs — Population, 275; Wainscott — Population, 200.


100 Years Ago        1923

From The East Hampton Star, March 9

At a special meeting of the town board at Clerk Ketcham’s office last Saturday afternoon, which was called for the purpose of opening bids for the proposed improvement of the Montauk highway, two bids were received. One was from the F.B. Mullen Contracting Company of Jamaica, L.I., and the other from James O’Brien, Amagansett. The F.B. Mullen Company’s bid to construct a concrete road about a half-mile from the point where the present concrete road ends, east of Amagansett, was $21,260.20. Mr. O’Brien’s bid was $21,983.16. The Mullen Company’s bid being the lowest the contract was awarded to it. Montauk is the ultimate goal of the road.

At last Saturday’s meeting of the town board a matter of extreme interest to residents of the town was discussed. This is the matter of opening the paths, roads and trails on Montauk that have been used for many years by residents of the town. Last year several of these roads on the Montauk Company land were closed by means of gates with signs posted giving notice that persons using them would be deemed trespassers. This caused the hunters and fishermen who had been accustomed to using these roads great annoyance.

Harry D. Sleight, who is writing a series of historic articles on East Hampton town, informs us that Bridgehampton had the first free circulating library of eastern Long Island, established in 1793. Sag Harbor comes next with its Sag Harbor Literary Society of 1807. The Rogers Memorial Library at Southampton was incorporated in 1893; the John Jermain Memorial Library at Sag Harbor was built in 1909. The East Hampton Library Company was incorporated in 1895.


75 Years Ago        1948

From The East Hampton Star, March 11

Burial wish granted to S. Gregory Taylor, millionaire New York hotel-man who died Feb. 22 in Palm Beach, Fla. In his will he requested he be buried on the 1.5 acre island in Coecles Harbor, Shelter Island, which is the site of his country home. Consent of county authorities was required for the unusual request, as there is no established cemetery on the island.

The masquerade dance for the Junior High School group was held at Guild Hall on Saturday night, with a very good attendance. Mr. and Mrs. W.P. McElroy acted as host and hostess; Percy Schenck played the piano for square dancing, led by Rev. N.R. Griswold.

Costume prize winners were Charlotte Osborn, in an authentic old-fashioned costume, judged the most attractive girl; Joy Stanlea, as the Devil, was judged most original. Russell Peele, as a local bayman, won first boys prize; and Joe Brubaker as a Colonial lady won second prize.

East Hampton’s Tercentenary celebration is really rolling now. All dates for special village “Days” are being set, beginning with East Hampton’s on June 26. People are studying their town’s history as never before. Authentic information for village and church histories, historic incidents for the pageant, costumes, and properties are being sought at the library. East Hampton is doing its celebration the hard way; all volunteer workers and a very elaborate program.


50 Years Ago        1973

From The East Hampton Star, March 8

Yes, we know Grants has opened in Bridgehampton, that the new Gristede’s will be open at Skimhampton before the next rise in meat prices, and that Amagansett Square is expanding, but can it be true that East Hampton is slated for two new Main Street movie houses?

United Artists officials in Great Neck were disinclined to discuss plans, but it was learned that Maurice D. Sornik, architect for UA, had obtained an East Hampton Village building permit last week for a “twin cinema” and four new Main Street stores on vacant land adjacent to the East Hampton Cinema.

Measures designed to preserve open space, in divided parcels other than subdivisions and on productive agricultural land, have been proposed by an East Hampton Town Councilman, Henry A. Mund Jr.

Outlining his recommendations at a meeting of the East Hampton Town Board last Friday, Mr. Mund noted that a certain amount of tax relief — he did not go into specifics — would accrue both to owners of oversized lots who granted “open space easements” to the Town in perpetuity, and to owners of productive farmland who agreed to keep that land in agricultural use for a designated number of years.

The East Hampton Town Fathers are hearing more and more talk of “moratorium” these days. At last Friday’s meeting of the Town Board no less than three such proposals were debated.

The talk of moratorium heated up here last fall, after Councilman Henry A. Mund Jr. proposed a new “Planned Residence District,” described as an attempt to preserve open space on the some 12,000 acres in the Town in tracts of 100 acres or more. The PRD which Mr. Mund suggested would have increased density from one unit per acre to 2.5 on these tracts if the developer clustered the dwelling units on 35 per cent of the land, leaving 65 per cent “open.”


25 Years Ago        1998

From The East Hampton Star, March 12

What appears on the outside to be a resolution of the runway reconstruction issue by the East Hampton Town Board could be just another chapter in a controversy that has raged for months now.

By unanimous resolution on Tuesday, four members of the East Hampton Town Board authorized Supervisor Cathy Lester to sign the construction contract with Hendrickson Brothers that she had refused to execute earlier on environmental grounds. They also voted to drop a pending appeal of the State Supreme Court decision ordering her to do so.

Members of a group claiming to lead the Montaukett Indian Tribe announced at a press conference on Saturday that they would pursue ownership of lands they say were stolen from their ancestors, including Montauk County Park, the Camp Hero State Park near Montauk Point, and the former Grumman site in Calverton.

It is at Calverton where the group hopes to build a tribal center and a long list of recreational, social service, and medical facilities — all funded by a casino.

Harry Macklowe’s request for a change of venue in a court case involving East Hampton Village Code violations was denied by a county judge last Thursday.

The Georgica Close Road resident had sought to have the case removed from East Hampton Town Justice Court because of what he called an “all-out vendetta” against him.


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