Photo of the Week
— January 24, 2020 —
FROM THE SCHS LIBRARY ARCHIVES
“Our History, Our Heritage, Our People”
GREETINGS FROM SHOREHAM, 1909
by Wendy Polhemus-Annibell, Head Librarian
“Greetings from Shoreham, Long Island, NY,” 1909. (Image from the Postcard Collection of the Suffolk County Historical Society Library Archives.)
Although the outlying farms and settlements date back to colonial times, the Shoreham of today was incorporated as a village in 1913. In the late nineteenth century, an Ohio banker named James A. Warden acquired significant landholdings in and around present-day Shoreham and undertook the development of a residential community there called “Wardenclyffe.” When the LIRR extension opened in 1895, the station at Shoreham was officially named Wardenclyffe. Mr. Warden was also instrumental in persuading a group of New York bankers to finance the construction of an experimental laboratory for Nikola Tesla, whose work in electronics had aroused scientific interest worldwide. Tesla’s lab opened in 1902 in Shoreham, but was short lived. Tesla was a part-time resident of the community at the time the plant was in operation. When Warden disposed of most of his lands in Wardenclyffe, the community was renamed Shoreham.
The hilly terrain of Shoreham made it necessary to construct a system of streets that would be free of the washouts that had plagued the community from the start. In 1913 it was proposed that the streets be concreted, and that the village be incorporated as an entity to issue bonds to cover the cost of the roadwork. At the time it was incorporated, Shoreham was the smallest village in New York state. It was and still is the first municipality in the state to have concrete roads throughout its original incorporated area.
Suggested Readings: “A History of the Incorporated Village of Shoreham in the Town of Brookhaven,” by Mervin G. Pallister (1976); and “History of Shoreham,” by Mary Lou Abata (n.d.).
Beyond the Gates: Join us for an Opening Reception Saturday, January 29, 2022, at 1:00 pm. Light refreshments will be served.
AAQ / Resource