04/18/15 12:00pm
04/18/2015 12:00 PM
Suffolk County historian Peter Fox Cohalan (left) dedicates the Suffolk County Historical Society's new gallery to Noel Gish (right) Thursday. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

Suffolk County historian Peter Fox Cohalan (left) dedicates the Suffolk County Historical Society’s new gallery to Noel Gish (right) Thursday. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

Less than a year ago, the Suffolk County Historical Society’s east wing was “nothing but a big closet,” said Bob Barauskas, president of the Riverhead organization’s board of trustees.

Not anymore. On Thursday evening, the newly restored former storage room was dedicated as the Noel J. Gish Sr. Gallery during a ceremony attended by nearly 125 people. (more…)

04/04/15 12:00pm
04/04/2015 12:00 PM
The old red mill in Riverhead. (Credit: Courtesy)

The old red mill in Riverhead. (Credit: Suffolk County Historical Society)

Did you know historians believe Riverhead to be home to the first saw mill ever erected on Long Island?

Around 1659, when Riverhead was still part of Southold Town, John Tucker received permission from local authorities to build the Little Red Mill, according to the Suffolk County Historical Society(more…)

02/08/15 10:00am
02/08/2015 10:00 AM
Suffolk County Historical Society executive director Kathy Curran addresses participants Saturday at the annual meeting of the Association of Suffolk County Historical Societies in Riverhead. (Credit Rachel Young)

Suffolk County Historical Society executive director Kathy Curran addresses participants Saturday at the annual meeting of the Association of Suffolk County Historical Societies in Riverhead. (Credit Rachel Young)

How does a historical society keep from becoming history itself? It was a question on the minds of about 40 local historians Saturday morning in Riverhead.

The historians gathered in the main exhibition gallery of Suffolk County Historical Society for the annual meeting of the Association of Suffolk County Historical Societies.

“What’s going to happen if we don’t get the next generation in the door?” said Dr. Georgette Grier-Key, the ASCHS vice president. “That is the biggest problem. There is definitely a generational gap.” (more…)

02/06/15 10:00am
02/06/2015 10:00 AM
Suffolk County Historical Society's 'Black History Through the Eyes of Dolls' will be on display through March 7. (Courtesy photo)

Suffolk County Historical Society’s ‘Black History Through the Eyes of Dolls’ will be on display through March 7. (Courtesy photo)

Miniature versions of influential African-American figures like abolitionist Harriet Tubman and President Barack Obama are among the 200 dolls on view through March 7 at Suffolk County Historical Society’s latest exhibit, “Black History Through the Eyes of Dolls.” (more…)

12/30/14 1:00pm
12/30/2014 1:00 PM
Ryan Egan (top) and Stephen Tang hang the vinyl tarps at Suffolk County Historical Society on Tuesday. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

Ryan Egan (top) and Stephen Tang hang the vinyl tarps at Suffolk County Historical Society on Tuesday. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

Entering downtown Riverhead from the east or the west, one can be expected to pass an “anchor property” at each end.

Coming from East Main Street, the Hyatt East End and Long Island Aquarium — both modern buildings which opened in the 21st century — are impossible to miss.

Coming from West Main Street sits the 85-year-old Suffolk County Historical Society building, a piece of both local and national history that has been on the National Register of Historic Places since the mid-1990s.

On Tuesday, the historical society and town announced that a set of banners are going up with the hopes of increasing the nonprofit’s visibility to the public.

“It is our hope that these unique banners will encourage more people to stop in and check out all we have to offer,” said historical society director Kathy Curran. “We believe this will allow us to better serve the public as an educational resource by clearly announcing this site as an historic center.”SCHS rendering

The signs started going up on Tuesday morning. Three vertical banners, measuring 12-feet 8-inches tall by 5-feet 6-inches wide, will spell out ‘Suffolk History Museum’ on each side of the building. In between, inside a pair of brick archways on the east and west sides of the building, two different Hal Fullerton images and two images from the historical society’s archives will be reproduced.

Ms. Curran said the Fullerton images will be Edith Fullerton driving Teddy Roosevelt and a Medford farm. A portrait of Henry Green (a whaler from Sag Harbor) and the Hulbert Flag, one of the earliest United States flags from the 1770s in the SCHS collection, will also be on display.

Though Riverhead Town itself does not have a historical society of its own, SCHS has been in operation since the mid-1880s, first operating out of the office of a Riverhead judge. The West Main Street building was constructed in 1930, where the nonprofit has been centered since.

The banners were made possible with the help of a $250,000 Main Street grant the town received in 2012, the fourth of its kind to come through the New York State Office of Community Renewal. The grant paid for 75 percent of the cost of the banners, which totaled about $10,000.

“Downtown Riverhead is fortunate to have many special educational facilities, including the Long Island Aquarium, The Long Island Science Center and the Suffolk County Historical Society, in such a close proximity,” said Supervisor Sean Walter. “We hope these new banners attract more visitors to the downtown business district.”

Caption: A rendering of new banners and reproduced images at SCHS. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

 

11/17/14 12:00pm
11/17/2014 12:00 PM
(Credit: Suffolk County Historical Society)

(Credit: Suffolk County Historical Society)

Most people are familiar with the story of Helen Keller, the blind and deaf girl who learned how to communicate with the help of her beloved teacher, Anne Sullivan. Fewer know that as an adult Ms. Keller traveled around the country delivering inspirational lectures.  (more…)

10/28/14 6:00am
10/28/2014 6:00 AM

Suffolk County Historical Society in Riverhead is hosting a “Book and Bottle” event on at 6 p.m. on Nov. 6 led by historian Dean Failey.

Mr. Failey is the author of “Long Island Is My Nation: The Decorative Arts & Craftsmen, 1640-1830.”

Wine and cheese will be served. The event is free to members of the historical society. The cost for non-members is $5.

For more information, call 631-727-2881 or visit suffolkcountyhistoricalsociety.org.