Fullerton exhibit celebrates an ‘oft-forgotten’ woman

Edith Loring Fullerton in Huntington, circa 1910.
Photo courtesy of Anne Nauman Edith Loring Fullerton in Huntington, circa 1910.

To celebrate Women’s History Month, an exhibit, “Edith Loring Fullerton: Lady of the Garden,” will run through April at the Suffolk County Historical Society in Riverhead, opening with a reception Friday, March 18, from 5 to 7 p.m.

Through photographs, memorabilia and publications, the exhibit explores the life and career of Edith Fullerton (1876-1931), who, in addition to being a mother, educator, railroad executive and author of books on gardening and agriculture, operated experimental farms in Suffolk County for the Long Island Rail Road with her husband, Hal Fullerton, the renowned railroad promoter and agriculturist now best known for his photographs of early 20th-century Long Island.

Although Mr. Fullerton referred to his wife as “Junior Partner,” they were really equal partners in the farms and many other endeavors. She succeeded her husband when he retired as special agent from the LIRR. Their combined work and vision are noted for contributing significantly to the development of Long Island.

The historical society is home to the Fullerton Photograph Collection, featuring 2,500 of Mr. Fullerton’s original negatives, and highlights of the exhibit include many photos from the collection never shown until now.

In addition to the exhibit, a tea and a talk, “Edith Loring Fullerton: The Oft-Forgotten Equal Partner of Hal B. Fullerton,” will be given by Dr. Natalie Naylor, professor emeritus of Hofstra University, at 2 p.m. Tuesday, March 29. Admission is $10; advance registration required.

Museum hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 12:30-4:30 p.m. Call 727-2881 or visit