Photo of the Week


“How shall we know it is us without our past?”
– John Steinbeck 


by Wendy Polhemus-Annibell, Head Librarian 

HOLIDAY CLOSURE: We will be closed on Saturday, Sept. 5, 2020 for the Labor Day holiday, and will reopen on Wednesday, Sept. 9 at 10:00 a.m.

Riverhead Baseball Team, c. 1908.  (From the Collection of the Suffolk County Historical Society Library Archives. Copyright Suffolk County Historical Society. All rights reserved.)

Baseball’s popularity as a national pastime spread across Long Island in the years following the Civil War, when it was a game played primarily at county fairs and in farmers’ fields. One of the earliest games recorded in Suffolk County was played at the Suffolk County Fair in Greenport in 1867, when the well-known Huntington Suffolks won the prized Silver Ball. Another well-known team in Suffolk, the Hawkins Nine from Ronkonkoma, played from the 1890s to 1935 and included six Hawkins brothers: Samuel, Morris, E. Stansbury, Ernest, Charles, and Richard.

Leo Fishel (1877-1960) of Babylon played for a number of Suffolk County teams. He was one of the first players in the county to make it to Major League Baseball and was the first Jewish pitcher in the majors. In 1899, when Fishel was attending Columbia University, the New York Giants requested him to pitch against the Cleveland Indians. Although Fishel lost his only major league game, he did strike out six batters and even got a hit for his team.

Some other early Suffolk County baseball teams included the Oregons from Mattituck, the Babylon Seniors, the Project Nines from Bay Shore, the St. James Nines, the Riverhead Nines, and the Old Field Club, among others.



The Suffolk County Historical Society is seeking your memories and photographs of the Riverhead Stadium (also known as Wivchar Stadium) that opened on Harrison Avenue on Memorial Day weekend 1949. Please contact us at or 631-727-2881 x103. Thank you!


Welcome Back! The Suffolk County Historical Society Museum is open to the public with new special summer hours of operation:

 Wednesday to Saturday, 10:00 am to 4:30 pm 

  • Enjoy a safe, socially-distanced family outing with 15-minute intervals between parties, for an enjoyable, worry-free environment.
  • Exhibits are open and provide a safe “touchless” experience for adults and children alike!
  • Masks are required of all museum visitors over age 2.

Due to Covid-19 distancing guidelines, our library will remain closed to the public but remote research services are available. Contact the library for more information: 631 727-2881 x103 or


To View 2014 Photo of the Week pages click here.

To View 2015 Photo of the Week pages click here.

To View 2016 Photo of the Week pages click here. 

To View 2017 Photo of the Week pages click here.

To View 2018 Photo of the Week pages click here.

To View 2019 Photo of the Week pages click here. 

To View 2020 Photo of the Week pages click here.



Suffolk County Historical Society
300 West Main St.
Riverhead, NY 11901



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