The History of Long Island,
from its earliest settlement to the present time.
Peter Ross.
NY Lewis Pub. Co. 1902

[transcribed by Coralynn Brown]


Peter Ross. A history of Long Island: from its earliest settlement to the present time.
New York: Lewis Pub. Co., 1902.

The township of Oyster Bay, which is the largest in Nassau County, as it was the largest in the old County of Queens, extends across the entire island from the Sound to the ocean. The north shore is deeply indented, and on the south it is separated from the ocean by the Great South Bay, with Jones or Seaford Beach in front. The bay encloses several small islands, which are included in the towmship, but for the most part they are of very little value. Its first patent was issued by Gov. Nicolls in 1667, and in 1677 the document was confirmed by Governor Andros. But its history goes back to a much earlier date, and it was one of the sorrows of old Peter Stuyvesant. It was neither English nor Dutch. The English held it; the Dutch claimed it; so it was sort of a no-man's land, caring little for the Dutch laws and looking to Connecticut for protection, although nominally under Dutch jurisdiction. Its sovereignty was claimed for a time by the colony of New Haven, but Stuyvesant never formally admitted that claim, although there is little doubt that it was a just and lawful one, as just and lawful as a treaty could accomplish. But the accession of Gov. Nicolls settled all such disputes, overthrew the Dutch rule, made Long Island an integral part of the Province of New York, and, except for the brief interval of the Colve opera bouffe supremacy, crushed for ever its hopes of being part of the New England Confederacy. But all this has already been told in an earlier part of this work, and treaties and the like may be passed by here and the story of actual settlement be dwelt upon.

The earliest deed for the disposal of land in Oyster Bay Township was unearthed some years ago by Mr. W. S. Pelletreau. It was issued in 1639 by the agent of the Earl of Stirling, and although Mariner Sinderland does not seem to have profited by the deed it may be inserted here as it shows the value of the land, and also proves that even in spite of the grant of the "Royal King," the Indians had to be reckoned with:

Know all men whom this p'snt writeing may concearne that I, James ffarrett, gent., Deputy to the right Honorable the Earl of Starelinge, doe by these p'sents, in the name and behalfe of the said Earle, and in my own name as his deupty as it doth or may any way concerne myselfe, give and graunt free leave and liberty unto Mathew Sinderland, Seaman at Boston in New England, to possess and ymprove and enjoy two little necks of Land, the one uppon the East side of Oyster Bay Harbour, and the other uppon the west side of the said Harbour, w'ch two necks, and every part of them, and all belonging thereunto or that the aforesaid two necks may afford, to remain unto the said Mathew Sinderland, his heires and assignes for now and ever, with full power to the said Mathew to dispose thereof at his own pleasure. But, forasmuch as it hath pleased our Royall King to grant a patent of Long Island to the said Earle, in consideration thereof it is agreed upon that the said Mathew Sinderland shall pay or cause to be paid yearely to the said Earle or his deputy tenn shillings lawfull money of England, and the first payment to bee and beginn at our Lady day next ensuinge in the year of God one thousand six hundred and fforty yeares, and so to continue. And it shall bee lawfull for the said Mathew to compound and agree with the Indians that now have the possession of the said necks for theire consent and good will.
In witness I have sett my hand and seale this day, beinge 18th of June 1639.
Robert Turner
James Fassett.

Whereas Mathew Sinderland, seaman, hath apporcon of Land at Oyster Bay on Long Island from one James Farrett, in the name and behalfe of the Earle of Starelinge, and the said Mathew is to pay for the said proportion tenn shillings a yeare to the said Earle or his deputy, Know you that I James ffarrett to have received from the said Mathew twenty shillings, and for the rent of the said land for the first yeare of his possession, beinge from thirty-nyne unto the fortieth, w'ch I reseaved and graunt the receipt thereof.
Witness my hand the 4th of September 1639
Recorded the 1st of March 1660, by me.
Will: Wells, Recorder.

The first real settlement was begun in 1653, when land was bought from the Matinecock Indians by Peter Wright and Samuel Mayo and William Leverich, and the purchase included the present bounds of Oyster Bay village. The price was paid on a much more liberal scale than usual and included "six Indian coats, six kettles, six fathom of wampum, six hoes, six hatchets, three pair of stockings; thirty awl blades or muxes, twenty knives, three shirts, and as much peaque [wampum shells] as will amount to four pounds sterling." The others included in the purchase were William Washburne, Thomas Armitage, Daniel Whitehead, Anthony Wright, Robert Williams, John Washburne and Richard Holbrook, and these men may justly be regarded as the pioneers of the township. Several others joined immediately after the agreement was made, if they were not even then on the exact spot. Twenty lots were laid out at first, of 6 acres each. Not much is known of the personal history of any of the settlers. Mr. Leverich we have already met in our story of Newtown. In Oyster Bay he does not appear to have been recognized as a leader, although he was the accepted minister of the settlement until 1657. His great aim in settling on Long Island seems to have been to work among the Indian tribes, and he certainly found many opportunities.

Peter Mayo was a remarkably enterprising fellow. He owned a good ship "Desire," of Barnstable, and in it carried the adventurers and their goods and possessions to Oyster Bay. He seems to have been the business man of the enterprise and looked after the affairs of the colony, apportioning its plantations or farms to those new-comers who proved agreeable to the town meeting.

Peter Wright was probably regarded as the leading man in the settlement, and Richard Holbrook built the first house in what is now Oyster Bay village.

Robert Williams is described as having been a near relative of the celebrated Roger Williams, and was the first purhcaser of the property which afterward became known as Dosoris.

Daniel Whitehead soon removed to Jamaica.

Anthony Wright prospered in Oyster Bay until his death in 1680, and the Washbournes moved to Hempstead. Most of them were natives of England, and while the settlement they formed was not a religious one it was a moral community in every way. They seem to have freely admitted new-comers to share in the privileges of settlement, and Gov. Andros' patent presents us with several new names. As we have not printed any of the manifestoes of this potentate, we may here present a copy of the patent he issued to Oyster Bay:

Edmond Andros, Esqr., Seigneur of Sausmares, Lieut. and Governor General under his Royal Highness James Duke of York and Albany &c., of all his Territories in America, To all to whom these Presents shall come sendeth greeting.

Whereas there is a certain Town in the North Riding of Yorkshire on Long Island commonly called and known by the name of Oyster Bay, situated, lying and being on the north side of the Island, towards the Sound, having a certain Tract of land thereunto belonging; the East bounds whereof begin at the head of the Cold Spring, and so to range upon a Southward line from the Sound or North Sea to the South Sea, across the Island to the South East bounds of their South meadows at a certain River called by the Indians Narrasketuck; thence running along the said coast westerly to another cerain River called Arrasquaung; then northerly to the Eastermost extent of the Great Plains where the line divides Hempstead and Robert Williams' bounds; from thence stretching westerly along the middle of the said Plains till it bears South from the said Robert Williams' marked Tree at the point of Trees called Cantiagge; thence on a north line to the said marked tree, and then on a north west line somewhat westerly to the head of Hempstead Harbor on the East side, so to the Sound; and thence Easterly along the sound to the aforementioned North and South lines which runs across the Island by the Cold Spring aforesaid; Bounded, on the North by the Sound, on the East by Huntington limmitts, and the South part by the Sea and part by Hempstead limmitts, and on West by the bounds of Hempstead aforesaid, including all the Necks of Land and Islands within the afore described bounds and limmits.

Know ye that by virtue of His Majesty's Letters Patents and the commission and authority unto me given by his Royal Highness I have Rattified, Confirmed and Granted, and by these presents do hereby rattify, Confirm and grant unto Henry Townsend senr., Nicholas Wright, Thomas Townsend, Gideon Wright, Richard Harcker, Joseph Carpenter, and Josias Latting, as Patentees for and on behalf of themselves and of their associates the Freeholderss and Inhabitant of the said Town, their Heirs, Successors and Assigns, all the afore mentioned Tract of Land within the said bounds, with the Islands and Necks of Land aforesaid, together with all the Wood lands, Plains, Meadows, Pastures, Quarries, Marshes, Waters, Lakes, Rivers, Fishing, Hawking, Hunting, and Fowling, and all of the profits, commodities, emoluments, Hereditments to the said Town Tract of Land and premises within the limmitts and bounds aforementioned described belonging or in any wise appertaining; To have and To hold all and singular the said lands, Heridiements and premises, with their and every of their appurtenances and part and parcel thereof, to the said Pattentees and their Associates, their Heirs, Successors and Assigns, to the proper use and behoof of them the said Pattentees and their Associates, their Successors and Assigns forever. The Tenure of the said lands and premises to be according to the Custom of the Manour of East Greenwich in the County of Kent in England, in free and Common Soccage and by Fealty only. Provided allways notwithstanding that the extent of the bounds afore recited in no way prejudiced or infringed the particular propriety of any person or persons who have right by labour or other lawfull claims to any part or parcell of Land or Tenement within the limmitts aforesaid, only that all the lands and Plantations within the said limmitts or bounds shall have relating to the Town in general for the well Government therof; and if it shall so happen that any part or parcell of the said land within the bounds and limmitts afore described be not all ready purchased of the Indians it may be purchased (as occasion) according to Law.

I do herby likewise confirm and grant unto the said Pattentees and their associats, their Heirs, successors and assigns, all the privilidges and immunities belonging to a Townshi8p within this Government, and that the place of their present habitation and abode shall continue and retain the name of Oyster Bay, by which name and Stile it shall be distinguished and known in all bargains and Sales, Deeds, Records and writings; they making improvements thereon according to Law, and yielding and paying thereof yearly and every year unto his Royal Highness' use as a Quit Rent one good fat Lamb on the 25th day of March unto such Officer or Officers as shall be empowered to receive the same.

Given under my hand and sealed with the seal of the Province of New York this 29th day of September in the 29th year of his Majesty's Reign, Anno Domini 1677.
Examined by me, Mathew Nichols, Sec.
This is a true Record of the original patent of Oyster Bay, written and examined by me,
John Newman, Recorder.
On the back side of the before written patent is the following endorsement:
New York, November 1st, 1684
Memorandum - That it is agreed and consented unto by us whose names are underwritten, deputed from the town of Oyster Bay to adjust and ascertain the bounds and limmits between the towns of Oyster Bay and Hempstead before the governor and council at Fort James in New York, that the bounds and limmits between Oyster Bay and Hempstead begin at the Barrow Beach, according to an agreement made the 25th day of October 1677.

Witness our hands -
Thos. Townsend, Nathaniel Coles, John Weeks, Isaac Horner.
Signed in the presence of John Sprague, George Farewell, George Brewerton.

Gov. Andros' patent was needed, for the vagueness of the boundary lines had given trouble. The Indians had not been promptly paid in the first place and that involved considerable negotiations, and the precise limits of the western bounday involve another dispute with the red men, while a similar trouble was started in 1663 with Huntington over the eastern boundary, but that dispute lasted for over a century and its details are too wearisome to be followed, especially as the matter has long ago lost its living interest - if it ever had any except to a handful of people.

In the internal government of the township the town meeting ruled in everything. So far as is known no clergyman was appointed in Mr. Leverich's place when he left and it was many years before a meeting house was erected. In 1677 "Thomas Webb, Schoolmaster," was appointed town clerk, but the title is all the reference to show that there was any educational provision in the town. In 1693 the town meeting "met together in order to a late act Assembly for settling two ministers in the county, but nothing done about it; but made return that it was against their judgment, therefore could act nothing about it."

Now it is impossible to believe that these people were without public worship from the time Mr. Leverich left in 1657 or thereabouts, and the probability is that the Quaker doctrines had made headway among them.

It would seem that at first the land was to be held in common, except the sex-acre home lots. That theory, however, was soon departed from and in practice all sorts of notions prevailed. Privileges were granted to one and withheld from another. Some lots carried rights to privileges in the meadows, pastures and woodlands, others did not; sometimes lots were given to people with proviso that they should build houses on them, others received lots without any proviso at all. It was the rule that the town meeting should pass upon the merits or demertis of intending settlers, but after a while lots were transferred without asking the leave of the meeting. All this in the long run led to confusion and bickering, recrimination and law suits. The fathers seemed to have had some idea of settling the land question, but appeared unable to carry them out and the result was trouble all around. So burdensome did all this become that a meeting was held in 1677, "when there was confirmed, by name, every freeholder which hath a free vote for giving and granting of common rights, and not otherwise; and that from henceforward no grant of township or common rights shall be confirmed; or held legal grants, without every freeholder hath legal warning that such a meeting is to be appointed, or that there are lands to be given out; and, after legal warning given them by the officer appointed, it shall be held legal, to all intents and purposes, all gifts or grants by common rights to either man or men, given by the majority of freeholders that doth appear at the time and place appointed. And it is further agreed that for every town right that any freeholder doth possess he shall have so many votes in the giving and granting land and common right, and not otherwise to be understood, but to grant and divide, as they shall see cause."

The freeholders named were:

Henry Townsend, Joseph Dickinson, Edmund Wright, Anthony Wright, Joseph Ludlum, Samuel Weeks, Nicholas Simpkins, John Jones, Francis Weeks, William Frost, John Rogers, John Dickinson, William Buckler, Nicholas Wright, Job Wright, Elizabeth Townsend, John Townsend, Josiah Latting, Nathaniel Coles, Richard Harcott, Adam Wright, Latamore Sampson (Simon Cooper), Daniel Coles, John Wright, John Townsend, Caleb Wright, Issac Doutty, James Townsend, John Weeks, Samuel Andrews, Matthias Harvey Fyde, Samuel Furman, Alice Crabb, Henry Townsend jr., Gideon Wright, Richard Crabb, George Dennis, Thomas Townsend, Joseph Weeks, John Weeks, of Warwick, Thomas Weeks, Moses Furman, James Weeks.

Only freeholders could vote in town meeting, but all lot owners were not freeholders and therby arose another complication. In fact the early land question in Oyster Bay is about as interesting a puzzle as a legal antiquary would delight to study.

From the first the settlers looked to New Haven as their suzerain, so to speak, and it would seem that New Haven accepted the charge, and in 1662 named John Rigebell as Constable of Oyster Bay. The colonists seem to have thought this hardly in keeping with their ideas of municipal liberty and in 1664 they joined with Hempstead, Newtown, Jamaica and Flushing to make up a sort of federation and manage their own affairs without crossing the Sound. How this federation would have panned out is hard to say; certainly Connecticut would have opposed it, and just as certainly Stuyvesant would not have tolerated it so far as such places as Flushing and Newtown and Jamaica were concerned. But the advent of Richard Nicolls settled all such matters, as has already been noted. It is said that Rigebell became so umpopular in Oyster Bay village owing to his willingness to accept Connecticut's nomination that he waas glad to sell his property and wander away.

Rigebell is described by some as the pioneer merchant of Oyster Bay and Newtown. The second was George Dennis, who, however, if he was the second merchant was the first bankrupt, for we are told that he had to turn over his property to his creditors. But Oyster Bay soon became noted as a mercantile centre, and as early as 1668 there was talk of building a wharf at what afterward became known as Ship Point.
In 1661 the first grist mill was erected by Henry Townsend. The miller engaged to run the concern, Richard Harcut, was not very polished or a very politic gentleman and seemed to offend several of the customers of the mill and much grumbling ensued. The matter, as was certain, was discussed at a town meting in 1672 with the following result:

"That if any person or persons do not like their usage at the mill they are to give notice of it to the miller and attend himself, or his wife if he have one, and see their corn grinding if they will; but if they will not attend the grinding * * * they are at liberty to grind in another place and the miller is at his liberty whether he will grind again for any such person or persons."

By the close of the 17th century Oyster Bay had become quite a port and fifty years later its merchants had an extensive trade with the various Sound ports and even with the West Indies. The outbreak of the Revolution, however, dissipated all that prosperity and blighted even the work of the fields for several years.

Oyster Bay seems to have been fairly divided when the great question which the War of the Revolution decided first began to assume a citical phase. It was loud in its protestations against the misgovernment and the stupidity which brought the matter of separation to an issue, but when the time came to take the step one way or the other which was to determine her position she seems to have hesitated.

As early as March 6, 1766, a town meeting was held at which the following stirring protest against the stamp act was drawn up and addressed to "The Committee of the Sons of Liberty in New York":

By order of a committee of the Sons of Liberty in Oyster Bay we are to acquaint you that at a meeting of the inhabitants on Saturday, February 22nd, 1766, it was unanimously agreed and resolved:
I. That the person, crown, and dignity of our rightful sovereign King George III, with all his just and legal rights of government, we will to the utmost of our power support, maintain and defend.
II. That the liberties and privileges which we as Englishmen have still enjoyed, particularly those of being taxed by representative of our own choosing and being tried by our own juries, we will also support, maintain and defend.
III. That the late Stamp Act is destructive of these our liberties, and is by us deemed to be arbitrary and unconstitutional; that as such we will to the utmost of our power endeavor to oppose and suppress the same.
IV. That the measures which you have taken and several noble efforts you ahve made in vindication of the general cause of liberty we do hearilty approve of, and that with our lives and fortunes we stand ready to assist you in the same.
V. That the committee now chosen do signify these our resolutions to the Sons of Liberty at New York, and elsewhere as they may think proper; that the said committee do for the future keep up appointed meetings, as may be thought necessary, at the home of George Weeks, in Oyster Bay, and maintain a correspondence with your committee, in which we expect your concurrence.

This shows that the good people of Oyster Bay were not afraid to express their views in plain language; but when the question of separation came before them in 1775 they were emphatically opposed to it. At the annual town meeting that year the clerk, Samuel Townsend, stated that he had received a letter ffrom the Committee of Safety in New York recommending that the people of Oyster Bay should get together and elect deputies to the Provincial Convention. The letter and its purport were discussed at considerable length, some urging the immediate election of deputies, some advocating delay and still others contending to leave the matter severlely alone. The whole discussion finally resolved itself into the simple question whether or not deputies should be selected, and when the vote was taken it was found that 205 had voted against deputies and only 42 were in favor of sending them. However, when the result was declared, the minority, who were enthusiastic and active in the furtherance of their views, at once got together and electred a deputy in the person of Zebulon Williams. Field, the historian of the battle of Brooklyn, characterizes the entire proceedings as a bit of adroit politics. However that may be, Williams went to the Provincial Congess and was accepted as the respresentative of Oyster Bay. He bore with him the following document:

To the Provincial Convention:
Whereas the unhappy dispute between the mother country and the American colonies, we humbly conceive, has arisen from assumed power claimed by the British Parliament to pass laws binding on us in all cases whatsoever, and hath given us great uneasiness; and, as we conceive, unaminity among the inhabitants of the colonies is the only means under Providence to secure the essential rights and liberties of Englishmen; and, in order that the inhabitants of the different colonies should know each other's sentiments and form general plans for the union and regulation of the whole; it is necessary there should be delegates appointed to meet in general Congress. And whereas the committee of correspondence of New York did request the people of Queen county to choose deputies, in consequence thereof there was a town meeting at Oyster Bay on April 4th, for the appointing of one deputy; but there appearing at said meeting a majority against it, yet nevertheless we the subscribers, freeholders of Oyster Bay, being determined to do all in our power to keep in unity with you and the colonies on the continent, and desirous of being in some measure represented at the general Congress, do hereby appoint Zebulon Williams as our deputy, giving unto him full power to act in our behalf in the premises aforesaid. In confirmation whereof we have herunto set our hands respectively:

George Townsend, Micajah Townsend, William Seaman, David Layton, George Bennet, Joseph Carpenter, John Schenck, Peter Hegeman, James Townsend jr., John Wright, Gilbert Wright, Richard Weeks, James Townsend, Prior Townsend, Wm. Latting, B. Latting, Joseph Thorney Craft, William Hopkins, Joseph Coles, Albert Albertson, John Luister, Rem Hegeman, Samson Crooker, Jacobus Luister, Albert Van Nostrand, Jotham Townsend, William Laton jr., William Laton, Peter Mutty (x mark), Benjamin Rushmore, William Wright, John Carpenter, Jams Farley (captain), Samuel Hare jr., Benjamin Birdsall, Joseph Doty, Isaac Bogart, Samuel Townsend, Gideon Wright, Gilbert Hare, Benjamin Townsend, Josiah Lattin.

Emboldened by their success, the combined results of patriotism and politics, the Whig element at once, on learning of their recognition by the Provincial Congress, proceeded to carry out their plans with a high hand. The Tory Justices, Thomas Smith, John Hewlett and John Townsend, protested against the rather high-handed doings at a town meeting; but in December 1775, they and 26 others were summoned before the Provincial Congress to explain their attitude, but a significant fact is that when the Oyster Bay company of militia was ordered to repair to headquarters there were more delinquents - they should hardly be called deserters - marked on the roll than the number of those who personally responded. Captain Sands - now Colonel - instituted a ruthless search throughout the township for deserters and Tories, and as soon as it was evident that the crisis was at hand and that Long Island was to be the scene of hostilities, the effort to crush out the opposition to the patriot cause throughout the whole of Kings and Queens counties was carried on with increased determination, and in some instances with increased cruelty. Civil law practically ceased to be enforced in Oyster Bay as elsewhere and the power was in the hands of the local Committee of Safety. On July 29, 1776, the following orders were sent to Lieut. Jotham Townsend:

I. You are to take command of the recruits, and march them down to Matinecock Point, where you are to place sentinels in the most advantageous places to discover the enemy; likewise to be very careful there is no communication to the ships of war. Should you discover any persons attempting it, you are to put them under guard.
2. You are to build a shelter if there be none convenient. Should you want any materials, take such as will answer your purpose best.
3. Charge your men that they insult nor abuse any of the inhabitants or destroy their effects.
4. Should you discover the enemy attempting to land, you are to send off express to me, and order the owneres of stock to drive them off with all expedition on the Great Plains.
5. Should any of your men disobey orders, steal, or abuse the inhabitants, you are to put them under guard.
6. Minute down daily what happens, and make a return Saturday next by 10 o'clock, at my house.
Jno. Sands, Col.
Westbury, July 29th, 1776.

Additional orders, August 3d:
Should you discover the enemy in sight you are to immediately hoist your signal, then send off your express.
You are not to suffer your men to play at cards, dice, or any unlawful game, nor intoxicate themselves with stong drink. You are to observe that no small craft passes and repasses having any transient persons or negroes on board. Should you discover any you are to take them up. If upon examination, you find them clear, discharge them; if guilty, put them under guard till discharged by the town committee. You are not to let your men waste their cartridges by firing wantonly at game. You are to exercise your men four hours every day.

But the disaffection could not be kept down. Many of the Tories to escapt persecution went into hiding, but on August 12, 1776, some 20 belonging to Oyster Bay were arrested and sent over to Connecticut. The committee which represented the Patriot cause for a time in reality used the name of liberty to cover persecution.

When the news of the result of the battle of Brooklyn reached the township, a change came almost in the twinking of an eye and the hunters became the hunted. The Committee of Safety, which received the news at Matinecock, disbanded in a hurry and some of them departed to insure their personal safety within the Patriot lines. Joose Montfort ran away from the township, too, but he hurried to the British camp and gave himself up to General Robertson, who handed him a certificatge of loyalty and so saved him further trouble. Several leading Whigs took to the swamps where the Tories had so recently been sheltered, and it was not long before British cavalrymen were engaged in the ugly task of hunting for them just as a short time before had been engaged in "rooting out" the Tories from the same hiding places. The saddest fate befell George Townsend and John Kirk, both of whom had made themselves particularly obnoxious during the reign of the committee. Townsend, in fact, was its chairman, and seems to have been almost rabid at the very name of Tory. Townsend and Kirk were arrested and taken to New York, where they were thrown into the Provost prison, and endured its horrors for nine weeks - a sufficient punishment, it would seem, for any conceivable crime to be visited on men accustomed to the refinements and decencies of life! While there Kirk contracted smallpox and died from its effects. His wife and infant child died from the same disease, so that virtually three lives were thus made to pay the penalty of one man being just a little too positive and premature in his patriotism. Townsend came out of prison hating the Tories worse than ever, and in 1782 seems to have had another taste of the hospitality of the Provost.

Toward the close of 1776 Gen. Oliver De Lancey took up his headquarters at Oyster Bay and assumed military control of the district. Then the full force of martial law began to be felt. Prices were fixed by the British officials for grain, provisions, provender, horses, cattle, and all these had to be delivered up to the soldiers without question. Some of the farmers were left with hardly enough fodder to sustain their stock, teams were impressed without regard to their local necessity and while money was pair for all this to the loyal farmers, it was said that when the farm of a Whig was raided and emptied the money was generally retained at headquarters. Business was paralyzed under such cirumcstances and farming practically was at a standstill, for though payment was made for what was appropriated it was not enough to pay for the outlay and the labor, and the presence of the military guaranteed neither order or safety. The gold paid for the produce was really a burden to those who received it. They could not spend it, they had no place in which to deposit it, and so had to conceal it about their premises, and a knowledge of this was an incentive to the thieves of the army and to the large body of desperadoes which followed the troops - as such men have followed all armies form the beginning of history.

An effort was made to enlist a corps of loyalists at Oyster Bay and Captian Henry Seton, who took charge of the recruiting, had stations at Oyster Bay, Huntington and Jericho. In March, 1778, a proclamation was issued calling for recruits and promising increased bounty money and all sorts of inducements to make up the strength of the Queen's Rangers, while $1 was promised to each person instrumental in bringing in a recruit. It would seem that 350 recruits were obtained and the Rangers were stationed at Oyster Bay and on Lloyd's Neck until May 16, 1779, when they left for King's Bridge, New York. The following extract from the "History" of Lieut. Col. J. G. Simcoe, who commanded the Queen's Rangers, refers to military operations in Oyster Bay Township in 1778:

There was a centrical hill [in Oyster Bay] which totally commanded the village and seemed well adapted for a place of arms. The outer circuit of this hill, in the most accessible places, was to be fortified by sunken fleches, joined by abattis, and would have contained the whole crops; the summit was covered by a square redoubt, and was capable of holdin 70 men; platforms were erected in each angle for the field pieces, and the guard-house in the center, cased and filled with sand, was rendered musket-proof, and looped so as to command the platforms and surface of the parapets; the ordinay guard of 20 was sufficient for its defense. Soon the militia assisted in working one day when Sir Wm. Erskine came to Oyster Bay intentionally to remove the corps to Jericho, a quarter of the legion was to quit in order to accompany him to the east end of the island. Lieut. Col. Simcoe represented to him that in case of the enemy's passing the sound both Oyster Bay and Jericho were at too great a distance for any post to expect succour, but that Jericho was equally liable to surprise as Oyster Bay; that its being farther from the coast was no advantage, as the enemy, being acquainted with the county and in league with the disaffected inhabitants of it, could have full time to penetrate undiscovered through the woods, and that the village of Oyster Bay to the seacoast would enable him to have a more watchful eye over the landing places, and to acquire a knowledge of the principle of the inhabitants in these important situations; and that provisions from New York might be received by water. Sir W. Erskine was pleased to agree with Lieutenant Colonel Simcoe; and expressed himself highly satisfied with the means that had been taken to ensure the post. * * * The garrison in New York being in great want of forage, Oyster Bay became a central and safe deposit for it, and frequent expeditions towards the eastern and interior parts of the island were made to enforce the orders of the commander-in-chief in this respect.

The people suffered much from the troops under General De Lancey, but when Fanning's Loyalists came along they found, Whig and Tory alike, that they were in the hands of a gang of thugs and cut-throats. Military law prevailed in its harshest form, corporal punishment was infliced on the slightest provocation, the soldiers, mos of them billeted in the villages, destroyed property, furniture and buidings without scruple. The officers tried to stop the reign of plunder, but seemed to be helpless. The Baptist meeting house became a barracks, that of the Friends a store house for the Commissary. A battalion of Hessians, commanded by Col. Von Janecke, robbed right and left in defiance of their officers and murdered in cold blood many citizens opposed their designs. It was related that in one instance when Jacobus Montford wounded a Hessian who was robbing his yard and was arrested, the officer dismissed him, saying if Montford had shot the Hessian he would have given him a guinea, but as a general rule the citizens did not escape so easily when they attempted to defend their property from the blackguards who were arrayed on the side of King George and disgraced the cause they were enlisted to support.

One of the most remarkable features of the story of the Revolution at Oyster Bay was what is known as the Whateboat campaign, which resulted in much annoyance and loss to the Loyalists. The whaleboats were taken into the service of the Continental Congress and the purpose was to cut off the supplies being sent to Long Island from the mainland, to capture prisoners and the smaller boats in the service of the British, to harass the coast of the island, and now and again to make a descent and capture some prominent Tory, who might thus be made to serve his country by serving as a ready exchange for some equally prominent Continental held as prisoner in the camp or jails of the Royalists. Sometimes it must be confessed that, especially toward the close of the struggle, there was little difference between the doings of many of the crews of these whaleboats and the acts of ordinary harbor thieves and coast pirates, but on the whole they fulfilled their purpose creditably. The following synopsis of their campaign is based on Onderdonck's researches, from which, indeed, the material on which this whole story of Oyster Bay in the Revolution has been taken:

One of the first reports of the capture of a boat plying between the ports of this town and New York was published in New Haven, Dec. 14, 1778: - "'Peggy' and cargo, Darby Doyle, master, navigated with forty men, under a commission of Val. Jones, to supply New York with fuel, forage, and provisions, was taken by Peter Griffing, captain of a company of rangers."

Dec. 22, 1777, Gaine says: "Sunday night, 14th, the rebels landed at Cold Spring, and carried off two market boats loaded with flaxseed, wood, cider, &c. &c." About the same time the sloop "Dove," with cargo, was taken in Cold Spring Harbor by Thomas Sellew, in the armed sloop "Lucy." The "Flying Fish" of Rye, captured the "Industry," Captain Abraham Selleck, from Oyster Bay to New York, loaded with fifteen cords of wood, seventeen half-barrels of cider and vinegar, seven or eight bags of meal, and rigging and sails for another vessel.

About 12 o'clock March 3, 1778, seven men, with arms, were discovered crossing Lloyd's Neck, bending their course for the narrow beach that leads off the Neck. They were pursued and taken by a party of loyal refugees. They were the noted William S. Scudder and his gang, as appears from his confession. He says he quit Long Island in September of 1776. After going with several expeditions he went to Hog Island with a party to take Squire Smith, but missed of him and took a Quaker, and plundered the house of considerable value. He had been with all the expeditions which had come to the island in the interest of General Parsons, and some time afterward was of the party who took two sloops out of Cold Spring Harbor. He wasof the party that had lately come over to Long Island and burnt the three vessels cast away while coming from Rhode Island, and it was his design in coming over at present to collect what he could from the wrecks then burnt. They robbed Samuel Skidmore's cider-mill house, and then attempted to go over to the other shore; but, the wind being contrary, and the day becoming extremely cold, freezing their fingers and feet, they had to make for the first land, which proved to be Lloyd's Neck. The confession is dated March 2, 1778, and signed by William Smith Scudder, with Tyler Dibble, a refugee, and William Quarme, captain of the guard ship "Halifax," in Oyster Bay, as witnesses. The prisoners on Saturday afternoon, March 7th, were brought to New York in the boat of the "Halifax," and secured.

General Putnam on the 22d of December following wrote a letter to Governor Clinton concerning Scudder, in which he mentions that Scudder had a commission from Governor Clinton to cruise the sound in an armed boat against the enemies of the United States; but complained that he had violated the orders of the commander-in-chief by seizing private property on Long Island. General Putnam adds that he knows nothing, personally, against Scudder, but has heard that he is a brave man, has suffered much, and done considerable service in the cause of his country.

On a Monday evening in the latter part of April a party of loyal refugees were cutting wood on Lloyd's Neck when they were attacked by two row galleys and an armed vessel, and carried prisoners, eighteen in number, to Connecticut. A little later in the same month Tyler Dibble and 15 wood-cutters were carried from Lloyd's Neck by a galley carrying a 12-pounder, and four whaleboats. The alarm reaching the man-of-war on that station, the boats were pursued, but without success. On the 5th of May a small boat commanded by Captain Adamson, with six men and ten swivels, went into Oyster Bay and fell in with the tender of the British ship "Raven," which mounted eight swivels and had nine men armed. The boat, after discharging her swivels and small arms, boarded the tender, and carried her the next morning into Stamford. She had on board three hogsheads of rum, several casks of bread, beef and other articles for the ship, and some dry goods.

Early in June the Schooner "Wild Cat," of fourteen swivels and forty men, came from Connecticut to Oyster Bay and landed fourteen of the crew, who shot some sheep at Oak Neck. This vessel is described as having a large number of oars, which enabled it at every calm to cross over and pillage the inhabitants of the island. A few days after this the "Wild Cat" and the "Raven's" tender, with four whaleboats well manned, came to Lloyd's Neck to harass the wood-cutters, when a number of boats from the British ship pursued them, capturing the "Wild Cat," and recapturing the "Raven's" tender and a wood boat, which had been taken when coming out of the harbor, together with some of the whaleboats, and thirty prisoners, killing two men, with no loss to the pursuers.

After the first of September the scale of success was changed again, and Major Grey, of Colonel Meig's regiment, killed three Tories on Lloyd's Neck, and carried off fifteen. A privateer also carried off a sloop loaded with wood and provisions. A party consisting of James Ferris, a refugee from the island, Benjamin Howell, Nathaniel Sacket of Bedford. Obadiah Valentine and Patrick Stout, came over from Connecticut on Thursday evening, a week after this, and plundered the house of William Cook of goods to the amount of 140lb, obliging him and his family to carry the goods nearly two miles to the whaleboats.

On Saturday following another party came over, in two boats, to Red Springs, near Mosquito Cove, and robbed the houses of Jacob Carpenter and John Weeks of a quantity of valuable effects, and then made off, but returned that evening and robbed two unfortunate weavers at Oak Neck. On the 9th of June following, Clark Cock, at Oyster Bay, was robbed of considerable cash, and goods to the value of over 400lb by another band from over the sound. The "True Blue," Captain Elderkin, captured the "Five Brothers," a schooner of 24 tons, with Abraham Cock master, nine miles west of Huntington Harbor, on the 3d of February 1779. A sloop of 45 tons, going to New York, the property of one Youngs, was captured on the 15th, four miles west of Oyster Bay, on the high seas.

"Simcoe's Journal," dated April 18, 1779, relates that a party of refugees, led by Captain Bonnel, with Captain Glover and Lieutenant Hubbell, furnished with arms, agreeable to orders from headquarters, went from Oyster Bay to take the generals, Parsons and Silliman, from the opposite shore. They did not risk an attack on General Parsons, but brought Brigadier-General Silliman to Oyster Bay. He was sent next day to New York. About the first of September following, Captain Glover, who headed this party, was himself, with twelve others, with some plunder, carried off from Lloyd's Neck by a whaleboat from Connecticut. On the 11th of the next month a continenal armed schooner, commanded by T. White, captured the "Charming Sally" and cargo in Oyster Bay. Justice Hewlett and Captain Israel Youngs were carried off in June by a party from Connecticut. A number of refugees soon after went over to Connecticut and returned with thirteen prisoners, four horses, and forty-eight cattle.

"Riverton's Gazette" tells us that on Monday night, July 3d, a party of rebels, supposed to be from Horse Neck, headed by one Benjamin Kirby, attacked the house of Abraham Walton, at Pembroke, Mosquito Cove, and took him, together with his silver plate, and Mrs. Walton's money. They then proceeded to the neighbors, and took Dr. Brooks. Albert Coles and eight more Loyalists, and carried all to Connecticut. In the latter part of July, at 2 o'clock on a Tuesday morning, John Townsend of Oyster Bay was carried off by a company of rebels, led by one Jonas Youngs. They also carried away most of the valuable articles in his house, besides partly demolishing the house itself. Arnold Fleet, a millwright, was carried off at the same time. The men, fearing the militia, several companies of whom were stationed near, hastened away, carrying their boats over the beach, and left their sentinel, a young man, on Mill Neck. He wandered about the neck until compelled by starvation to give himself up.

On a Monday in October five vessels came into Oyster Bay and captured a guard brig pierced for 14 guns, with 10 mounted; also a sloop of six guns, commanded by Samuel Rogers, who had been taken and carried to Connecticut three times since the first of March preceding. Three other sloops, also a schooner from under the battery of Lloyd's Neck, were taken and all safely conveyed into port on the Connecticut shore.
Hon. Thomas Jones, Justice of the Supreme Court of New York, a noted and active Loyalist, was much coveted by the Americans as an offset for General Silliman, whose capture has already been mentioned. An attempt was made for his capture and conveyance to Connecticut; the mode and results are recorded as follows:

"Fishkill, December 9th, '79
On the evening of November 4th about twenty-five volunteers, under Captains Hawley, Lockwood and Jones, and Lieutenant Jackson and Bishop, crossed the sound from Newfield [since Bridgeport] to Stony Brook, near Smithtown, and marched to the house of the Hon. Thomas Jones, justice of the supreme court of New York, at Fort Neck, where they arrived about 9 o'clock on the evening of the 6th, hiding in the woods by day. The whole distance ws 52 miles. There was a ball in the house, and the noise of music and dancing prevented the approach of the adventurers being heard. Captain Hawley knocked at the door, and, receiving no answer, forced it and found Judge Jones standing in the entry. He told him he was his prisoner, and immediately conducted him off, and a young man named Hewlett. A guard of soldiers was psoted at a small distance form the road. When they came near the spot the judge hemmed very loud, but was forbidden to repeat it. He did, however, but on being further threatened desisted. An alarm arose, which obliged the men to retreat rapidly, traveling 30 miles the same evening, and to secrete themselves the next day, by which time the British light horse was near. The next evening they reached their boats, having taken two prisoners more, and arrived safe at Black Rock, Fairfield county, on the 8th, except six men in the rear, who were overtaken and captured by the light horse. Judge Jones was taken to Middletown, and in May, 1780, was exchanged for General Sullivan, a prisoner at Flatbush. Mr. Hewlett was exchanged for the general's son, one Washburn being thrown in as a make-weight. After the exchange the judge and genearl dined together."
Judge Jones had been paroled in Connecticut as a prisoner of the United States just three years, to a day, before the date of the above article.

"New Haven, Nov. 24, '79 -

Monday sen'nit two small privateers of four guns each, commanded by Captains Lockwood and Johnson, ran into Oyster Bay under British colors, where four wood vessels under protection of a large eight-gun brig, who asked the privateers, "Where from"? and on being answered, "From New York," they were permitted to run alongside the brig unsuspected, and, boarding her, the crew were surpised into immediate surrender, without firing a gun, though manned with 20 stout fellows; on which the other vessels also submitted, and were brought out of port, destined for Norwalk or Stamford; but, on being pursued by some armed vessels from Huntington Harbor, the brig unluckily ran on a reef or rocks near Norwalk Harbor, and fell again into the enemy's hands, who got her off and took her away. The other prizes got safe into port."

This brig was a guardship in the mouth of Oyster Bay. The first ship, the "Halifax," under Captain Quarme, was after two years condemned, when he was succeeded by Captain Ryley, who became superannuated. Then came Captain Townsend, who had been for some time ashore sick at William Ludlam's, in the hosue now occupied by Henry Ludlam on Hog Island. One day after he had begun to be able to walk about he invited Mr. Ludlam to walk to the other side of the island to look at his vessel, when, to their surprise and chagrin, they saw the privateer's run alongside and capture the craft, which was the above mentioned brig. The British has been expecting their own fleet of privateers, so did not suspect the trick. Mr. Ludlam was always sorry for his friend.

The "Lively," of seventy tons, was taken in Oyster Bay December 7th, with a cargo of salt. "Rivington's Gazette," July 25th, says that two whaleboats, the "Association" and "Henry Clinton," crossed from Fort Franklin, on Lloyd's Neck, to Norwalk, landed 38 men, and returned to the island to escape observation, but were to be back at a given hour. The party marched five miles from the shore, and remained hidden in the woods till 2 o'clock. Captain Frost surrounded the sanctuary where the people of Middlesex (now Darien) had assembled for prayer, and took fifty norotious rebels, their reverend teacher at their head. Forty horses ready saddled were taken car of at the same time, and all safely brought to Long Island." Onderdonk adds;

"They were all ironed, two and two, on the green in front of Wooden's Oyster Bay, and so marched to the provost."
On the evening of November 24th, 1781, Lieutenant J. Hull, of Colonel Fitch's corps, came over the sound in a whaleboat, navigated by eight men, and landed near Hempstead Harbor, the entrance to which was guarded by an armed vessel. He left his boat with two men, and with the others marched to Mosquito Cove. Finding a canoe, and embarking, they boarded nine vessels which lay in the cove and made prisoners of sixteen men; not deeming it safe to try to take the vessels away, they were ransomed and the prisoners paroled. The whole party returned without the loss of a man. About the first of December a number of whaleboats came into Oyster Bay and unrigged Captain Sheddan's boat at Ship Point, and carried off another, which was ransomed for 200lb.

"Riverton's Gazette"
under date of Sept. 18, 1782, says:
"As Captain Thomas, of the 'Association,' carrying ten 4-pounders and 30 men, was convoying a fleet of wood boats down the sound, they were attacked off Tinnicock by two gunboats and 11 whaleboats manned with 200 men, the largest boat having a brass sixpounder in her bow. Captain T. hid his men, housed his guns, and thus decoyed the boats within musket shot, when his men suddenly discharged their muskets, and cnister shot from the four-pounders. A number fell, but they did not desist from their attack, but towed off detached vessels, as it was a calm. They were, however, all retaken after a combat of six days. These pickaroon gentry greatly infest our coast."

In the latter part of December the schooner "Peggy," John Envidito master, and her cargo of broadcloths, coating, linen and other goods, were taken.

On one occasion the whaleboat men found a vessel aground at Cold Spring. They attempted to get her off, but failed. Threats of burning caused the vessel to be ransomed. The whaleboat men robbed the store of one Youngs at East Woods, and hid the plunder in the bushes near the shore, in order to remove it at a more suitable time; but the goods being discovered, they were prevented. Nicholas Wright's store was robbed. Justice Smith, of Hog Island, was robbed of silks, etc., and William Ludlam, a tailor who lived with him, was robbed of a great many suits of clothes which he was making up for his customers. Sarah Wright, at Cove Neck, was robbed, among other things, of a silver milk pot, which was carried to Stamford. Seth Wood's store at East Woods was also robbed. The house of John Willets, at Cedar Swamps, was broken open, his hands were tied, every threat was used, and his house was even set on fire, to make him give up his money, but in vain.

Probably the people of Oyster Bay, whether Whig or Tory, felt relieved when the sound of war ceased and the horros of martial law became a thing of the past. When peace was proclaimed, industry was resumed, but the township had been so seriously drained of its resources, its field had been so trampled on and destroyed, its graneries, when spared, had been so emptied, and its financial resources so reduced, that it took a long time to regain what had been lost during the few years of conflict. Agriculture was at that time the main industry, for the war had shattered the shipping trade which had been promising so much prior to 1776. But the soil, not the sea, was, after all, the mainstay of the people and so until the nineteetnth century had pretty well advanced, the story of the township is mainly a record of improvement in crops, in farm stock, in extenstion of the farm land by a steady clearance of the brush and wildwood, and in the devlopment of the breed of horses, horses for pleasure as well as for work. The apple seems to have been the principal fruit cultivated, and Oyster Bay became noted for its cider.

Oyster Bay did not develop into much of a business until about the middle of the last century. The oysters of the town's Sound shore front had been famous among the Indians, and the white settlers prized them as food. So did others, for we find, in 1784, a special town meeting declared that ousiders should not be permitted to "take or carry away any of the oysters from off the oyster beds lying in the town on penalty of five pounds, to be recovered by the persons hereafter named [Samuel Youngs, James Farley, Amaziah Wheeler], and to be paid to the Overseers of the poor."

In 1801 a town meeting came to the protection of the oyster by declaring "that no oysters be caught in the harbor of Oyster Bay with rakes or tongs from the first day of May next to the 1st day of September following, under the penalty of five pounds for each and every offence." There was probably grave reason for this, for the quality of the oysters and the demand for them evidently threatened a shortage in the supply. Up till then the oyster fishing had been one of the privileges of the township and seemed to be part of the common property of the people, but in 1807 the beginning of a system of private property in the bivalve was inaugurated, when a town meeting granted Robert Feeks ten square rods under water "for the purpose of making an oyster bed where no valuable bed has been known." This was a beginning, and private ownership in oyster beds soon became so widespread as to threaten the occupancy of the entire harbor and remove from the people a right which they had enjoyed since the settlement. The courts were appealed to, but decided that any inhabitant could plant an oyster bed in a spot not previously occupied, and the bed should be regarded as private property. Thereafter there ensued a long struggle between the people and those who had thus acquired property rights, and the battle was waged for years. The people could pass and did pass resolutions regulating the trade, protecting the growth of the oysters, and layind down laws for close or open seasons, but when the question came to be an invasion of private property rights the courts sternly interfered. In 1843 a meeting delcared "we will defend the rights of the town to the exclusive ownership of the oysters in Oyster Bay," but that gallant defence went practically no further than the paper on which it was written. In 1847, however, they got down to a tangible issue when they declared that "the oysters in the bay or waters of the town be free to all of the inhabitants of the said town the ensuing year." The owners of the oyster beds at once took issue with this, the law was appealed to, and the rights of the planters to the exclusive use of their property was sustained.

We may now turn our attention to the religious life of Oyster Bay, a subject which is of equal interest and importance with its civil history. It has already been said that the first community was not a theocracy, although the Rev. Mr. Leverich was among the pioneers and was regarded as their minister until he moved away in 1657. It is held that in 1659 a regular meeting of the Society of Friends was established at Oyster Bay, in the residence of Anthony Wright, and a marriage was solemnized there between Samuel Andrews and Mary Wright, August 8, 1663. There are some signs also that some of Mrs. Hutchinson's converts visited Oyster Bay and held religious meetings, so that in one way or another, the place was not without its spiritual leaders, and Oyster Bay became the religous centre for a wide district. In 1672 George Fox paid it a visit and preached in the woods, with a rock for a pulpit, because there was no house in the place large enough to accomodate the numbers of his auditors, and it was in that year that Anthony Wright gave land, part of his house lot, to the Society of Friends, on which to erect a meeting house and lay out a burial plot. The house was finished early in the following year and seems to have been a comfortable little structure, with double doors, eight windows and plain benches. The Society waxed strong, and large congregations were formed in Matinicock in 1671, Jericho in 1676, and in Bethpage in 1698, while on the lonely farms the simple faith of the Society that held by possiblly nine-tenths of the people. For a time it would seem that next to Flushing, Oyster Bay was the most important centre of the Society on Long Island. So the burly and blusterous Keith reported, in 1701, as the result of his personal observation. But even then a change had taken place, and the adherents of the Society gradually fell off in the village. The first meeting house was taken down in 1693, and a second was not built until 1749. In 1797 the number of Friends had dwindled down until mroe than "a remnant."

This, however, was not caused by any falling off in the religious spirit of the town, but because other influences had been at work and had weakened the hold of the Society. The Baptists had been zealously at work even when the Society seemed supreme, and had gradually won converts to their views. About the year 1700 William Rhodes settled in Oyster Bay village from Rhode Island, and at once began to hold regular meetings, and so organized a congregation - a congregation that was made up mainly, if not wholly, of persons who had been numbered among the Quakers. It has been held that he was not an ordained minister, that he was without denominational authority, but in the early history of either the Quakers or the Baptists such matters were not deemed of prime importance in the face of results. In 1724 a Baptist meeting house was erected, but the congregation lost its up-builder, for Mr. Rhodes in that year was called to his rewarad. He was succeeded, Prime tells us, by "an individual by the name of Robert Feeks, the son of a Quaker preacher," who had been his assistant. "He was ordained," says Prime, "in 1724 by Elders from Rhode Island. He was what is called a Free-will Baptist, and as no other qualification was considered necessary in a candidate for baptism than a desire to be saved, his church was, of course, numerous. * * * He labored many years, and died [1773] in the 89th year of his age." But he was not without his troubles. In 1745 the Rev. Thomas Davis was appointed his colleague, and, being a stern and unyielding Calvinist, his sentiments were on many points utterly opposed to those of his senior. This led to bickerings and confusion and might have caused the creation of another congregation had not Davis, after some three years of agitation, retired from the vineyard on account of ill health. The people then held together, each section certain of ultimate triumph. Caleb Wright, a grandson of the pioneer Rhodes, had been educated for the ministry and was to be ordained and installed as Mr. Feek's colleague. The people had listened to his preaching for over a year, and there was a strong hope that he would lead the people into quiet waters, that he would heal the past differences. But the day appointed for his ordination turned out to be that of his burial, and the Rev. Isaac Still, of New Jersey, who had been appointed to ordain, preached his funeral sermon. After that contention broke out worse than ever. Mr. David returned for a brief visit in the hope of restoring peace, but seems to have made the confusion worse than ever, and if we read Prime's story of the trouble aright, he and the now venerable Pastor Feeks had a regular set-to in the pulpit one Sunday, and Davis proved the victor, put Feeks out and preached the sermon!

In 1759 David Sutton was called to the pastorate, and for a short ime peace prevailed, but the result was a schism and the formation of a new congregation, calling themselves the "New Lights." The pastor of this body, or its spokeman and preacher, was Peter Underhill (a grandson of the famous Captain John Underhill), but its real leader was his mother-in-law, Mrs. Sarah Townsend, who, having in her early years been a schoolmistress, was generally known as Madame Townsend; a woman of much ability, evidently, and one who had certainly studied the Scriptures closely and believed in expounding them according to her lights. She refused to believe in denominational restraints, believed in the indiscriminate outpouring of the Spirit, and believed that all would, at one time or other, be converted. When the new body attempted, after a little experience, to draw up a set of rules to maintain order and decorum, she shouted "Babylon!" and withdrew. However, she seems to have soon returned, and the little community lasted for some thirty years, when she and Underhill and the others gave up the struggle and became associated again with the regular Baptist Church. By that time that body had been reduced to nine members, and even six years later it was only blessed with a membership of forty. In 1801 the Rev. Marmaduke Earle, having settled in Oyster Bay to assume charge of the Academy, also agreed to supply the pulpit of the Baptist church, and under his ministry, which continued until his death, in 1856 , the Baptist body has had a history in Oyster Bay in every way worthy of its aspirations and its high position as a body of ernest, devoted Christian workers.

Along with the Baptist body, the Episcopalians aided in the disintegration of the Quaker supremacy. Keith, the renegade Quaker, mentions that he had considerable success in his proselytizing efforts in Oyster Bay, among other places on Long Island, in 1701. A church building was erected in 1707, but for many years the congregation was under the pastoral charge of this clergyman at Hempstead. After the Revolution services were conducted irregularly, but the congregation remained intact and the church authorities in New York in 1787 appointed Andrew Fowler as "reader" to the people at Islip, Brookhaven and Oyster Bay. Mr. Fowler afterward became rector at Oyster Bay. He did not remain long with the people after being ordained a priest. It is doubtful if the church building was much used after the Revolution for Divine service, as the Hessian troops had used its timber for their own purposes and destroyed much of the internal fittings. In 1804, however, the structure was blown down and the material of which it was composed was then sold for $67, which sum, however, the local church authorities did not receive until 1845. Its site was used for the Oyster Bay Academy. With the removal of Mr. Fowler, in 1791, the congregation seems to have again passed under the care of a reader, with occasional visits from the rectors at Huntington and North Hempstead. When the Academy was completed the people worshipped in one of its rooms. In 1835 it was made a missionary station under the Rev. Isaac Sherwood. In 1844 Oyster Bay again became a district charge, a new church building was erected in 1845, and the modern history of the congregation may be said to have then begun. The present beautiful structure in which the congregation now worships was erected in 1878, when the cornerstone was laid by the then rector, the Rev. George R. Van deWater, now of New York.

It was not until 1846 that a Presbyerian congregation was formed at Oyster Bay.

The present village of Oyster Bay has a population of 2,320. In 1846, in a moment of irresponsibility, it was decided to change its name to Syosset, but the change only lasted, fortunately, for about a week. Besides its important oystering and shipping trade it is the centre of a colony of summer homes of the very highest class. Its importance has steadily increased since the railroad gave it easy access to the outer world. Its cottages are most picturesque and reach out from it in all directions, and it is well supplied with hotels and boarding houses. As the home of the Seawanhaka Yacht Club it is the centre for that class of sport, and the clubhouse of that organization, a most imposing structure at the entrance of the bay, with more or less of its "fleet" in front and its dock always a busy, bustling place during the season, is itself a prime attraction to visitors. Oyster Bay, in fact, has become quite a fashionable centre, and its dignity in this respect seems certain to steadily increase. Of recent years it has come into special prominence as the residence of Theodore Roosevelt, ex-Governor of New York, and now President of the United States. His spendid cottage has been the scene of many an important gathering since his return from Cuba, where, as Colonel of the famous "Rough Riders," he won a national pre-eminence and became one of the foremost figures in American public life; the first Chief Executive which Long Island has given to the United States.

Matincock is now best known to the outside world from the fact that its "point" has become a "mark" in the local yachting competitions. Yet, in spite of that and in spite of the fact that its population increases but slowly (125 at last reckoning), it has a most interesting history.
For a long time it was claimed by Hempstead as part of its territory, but the claim was disproved in 1666, but although the Oyster Bay settlers claimed to have bought it from the Indians in 1653, and that claim has been allowed to stand, there does not seem to exist any tangible proof of it. But it was settled soon after, for in 1659 we find that people from Matinicock attended the services of the Society of Friends in Oyster Bay. In 1660 the famous - in infamous - Capt. John Undershill received 150 acres of land in Matinicock from the Indians as a gift, and in 1663 he added to his possessions by purchase. About the same time his brother-in-law, John Feeks, a Quaker preacher, bought an adjoining tract, and the dwellings of these two worthies were erected close together. The only son of John Feeks became the pastor of the first Baptist Church in Oyster Bay. In 1682 a stated meeting of the Society of Friends was inagurated here, and in 1682 a meeting house was erected, which was followed by the erection of a larger structure in 1725. From the first Matinicock has been a farming community and so remains.

Locut Valley (formerly called Buckram), which has a population of 625; Lattingtown (200), and Bayville (400) are all pleasant village in the old territoty of Matinicock which call for little comment, although the schools of the first named have won more than a local reputation. In these places the influence of the Society of Friends is still very great.

Dosoris can date from 1668, when Robert Williams bought 1,000 acres there from the Matinicock Indians, including two islands known by the prosaic names of East and West. The property, after several changes, came into possession of Daniel Whitehead of Jamaica, who bequeathed it to his daughter, the wife of John Taylor. It was inherited by the only offspring of that marriage, a daughter, Abigail, who became the wife of Rev. Benjamin Woolsey of Southold. He it was who gave it its name - a contraction or adaptation of the Latin Dos Uxoris - a wife'd dower. Apart from the singularity of its name there is nothing to demand our attention in the village, which has only a little over 100 of a population. But it is a beautiful and romantic place, and when it becomes easier of access is certain to attract a large share of the summer business of Long Island. For many years Charles A. Dana, of the New York Sun, occupied West Island, and Townsend Cox, a long and leading politician in New York, had his home on West Island.

In September, 1868, Glen Cove celebrated its bicentennial, and there was a procession, music, oratory - mainly an oration by Mr. H. T. Scudder - and a feast of clams, sandwiches, coffee, etc. It was a good old-fashioned jollification, it was open to all who chose to listen or partake, and when the day was over the good folks of the village were ready to swear that Glen Cove had not its equal in all Long Island.

In 1668 Joseph Carpenter, a resident of Rhode Island, after a short stay at Oyster Bay, bought some land from the Indians at Mosquito Cove, Nathaniel Coles, Abra Carpenter, Thomas Townsend and Robert Cole. That purchase was taken to mark the beginning of Glen Cove by the local antiquaries. The little colony was soon enlarged, and in 1786 the settlement had no fewer than 32 taxpayers. They were:

Caleb Coles, 125; Benjamin Coles, 100; Jacob Valentine, 277; Coles Mudge, 80; Jordan Coles, 19; James Bennett, 3: Henry Mott, 26; Charles Thorne, 19; Thomas Kipp's estate, 6; Joseph Wood, 120; Benjamin Craft, 73; Joseph Craft, 147; Solomon Craft, 60; Morris Carpenter, 15; William Hyde, 11; Coles Carpenter, 200; Albert Coles, 75; Derich Coles, 62; William Coles, 48; Benjamin Coles jr. 100; Isaac Coles, 19; Daniel Coles, 120; Ananias Downing, 156; William Hopkins, 80; Thomas Hopkins, 140; Silas Downing, 20; Jeromas Bennett, 80; George Bennett, 80; Thomas Pearsall, 185; Charles Frost, 3; John Frost, 3; William Bennett, 6.

The first industry, outside of agriculture, was that of milling. Joseph Carpenter erected the first sawmill and in 1677 added a grist mill, in connection with which he entered into the following agreement with his neigbors:
Agreed yt whareas I, Joseph Carpenter, haveing Built A grist-mill joyneing to oure new saw-mill, and upon ye stream which belongeth to us five purchasers - Nathaniell Colles, Daniel Colles, Robert Colles, Nickolas Simkins and my selfe - and in consideration of three parts in ye streme and timbarf I Joseph Carpenter doe plege my selfe, hy heyres, Exsexetors, Administrators, and Asigns, soe long as my selfe, my heyres, Exsexetors, Administrator, or Asignes shall keep or mantaine ye said mill, tto grind ye aforesaide proprietors' corne and grayne for each of their famylies well and Tolle-free for ever; and iff my selfe, my heyres, Exsexetors, Administrators or Asignes for ye futar shall see case to Lett ye sayde grist-mill fall, and not to keep it in repayre for ye fulfilling of ye conditions as above inserted, that then and after, forever, ye aforesayde streme to remaine to us five proprietors and our heyres and Asignes for ever, to order and dispose of as we shall see Case - to which I have sett my hand and seale ye 14th of Janewry 1677.
Joseph Carpenter.
Signed, sealed and delivered in ye presence of us - Tho. Townsend, Samuel Pell.

These mills appear to have done quite a large business, and indeed prosperity seems to have been the characteristic of life at Mosquito Cove until the crisis of 1776. Its people then were mainly found on the side of the Patriots, and quite a number of its youth - a company indeed - marched away to the scene of battle and gave up their lives under the leadership of the gallant Woodhull, whose own life was also sacrificed for the cause of liberty.

From the declaration of peace, Glen Cove seems to have been forgotten by the world, until about 1828, when a joint stock company was organized to run a steamer between it and New York and intermediate points. A steamer, the Linneus, had some some time been run between Glen Cove and New Rochelle by Capt. Peck. The stock company built a splendid new dock and the adventure proved quite a success. It is still continued, even although many thought that the railroad would force its cessation. Some of the most substantial boats that ever plied on Long Island Sound have been on this route, the "Flushing," "American Eagle," "Mayflower," "General Sedgwick," among them. Two of the boats, the "Glen Cove" and the "Long Island," were sent South during the Civil War and were there burned. The saddest incident of the line's story was that of the burning of the "Seawanhake," on June 28, 1880. She had left her pier in New York on that date with some 300 passengers on board. When passing Ward's island, the vessel seemed suddenly to become a mass of flames and the Captain hastily determined to run it on to a marsh known as the Sunken Meadows. By this action the lives of most of those on board were saved, but between deaths by burning and drowning the casualties reached 61.

It was the establishment of the Glen Cove Manufacturing Company - for the making of starch - in 1855 that has given to the village its position as a manufacturing place and made its name to be known almost all overf the civilized world. The product was perfect from the start and speedily won its way, while the awards it received at the great London Exhibition of 1862 gave it a position which it has since maintained, that of making a starch which is not surpassed for purity by any in the world. The subsequent "world's exhibitions," Paris, Philadelphia, Chicago and others, have emphasized the praise bestowed on it by the London experts when it first entered into open competition with all other makes. Its first factory, erected in 1856, was destroyed by fire in February, 1858, but a new establishment was erected at once. Nowadays the company operates an immense establishment, and to it, more than to any other single agency, Glen Cove owes its eminence as the most richly populated village in Oyster Bay township, the latest returns placing it at 4,700.

It has been held that a Methodist congregation was formed in Glen Cove as early as 1785 under Jesse Coles as class leader. The services were held in private residences until 1827, when provision was made for them in the school building, and a Sabbath school organized. In 1844 a church building was erected, which gave way in 1861 to a much more commodious structure. St. Paul's Episcopal Church was founded here in 1833, and was at first closely associated with the church at Manhasset, and a Presbyterian Church was organized in 1868 with fifteen members.
Writing of Glen Cove, a recent guide-book says:

"Adjacent to Glen Cove is the Pratt property, an estate of eight hundred acres, magnificently located, with a frontage on Long Island Sound. On the Pratt estate is the tomb of the late Charles Pratt, in his lifetime the most prominent personage identified with Glen Cove. He located his country home upon the estate above referred to, and established the model educational school building for the town, which he designed to stand as his most enduring momument. He died before the realization of his hopes, but his sons carried out as a sacred injunction the favorite design of his lifetime, and the building was dedicated with due solemnity on May 24, 1893. The institution maintains an agricultural department which is operated upon a portion of the estate, and here the students are initiated into the best and latese researches of modern farming. Continuous to the Pratt estate the veteran editor of the New York "Sun," recently deceased, laid out his magnificent possessions, known as "Dana Island." This beautiful property is known far and wide, and the late Charles A. Dana lavished upon it a constant and unremitting care. It is as celebrated in the records of horticulture as the famous Shaw's Gardens of St. Louis, and contains trees, plants, and shrubs collected from every portion of the globe. Dull care and business were never allowed to enter this ideal spot. His last hours were spent here, and the estate is to be maintained in its integrity and beauty with the same reverent care as was lavished upon it by its lamented owner."

Sea Cliff, which might be called a suburb of Glen Cove, was founded in 1871 as a religious settlement by a corporation having its headquarters in New York. It was to be a place for the summer residence of Christian families of moderate means, where they might lease a small plot of ground, erect modest cottages and enjoy fresh air and rest with such spiritual enjoyments as camp meeting and other forms of public worship. The ground was at first intended to be leased, not sold, and an annual rent of ten dollars on each lot was to be devoted to paying the interest on the money invested and in improving the grounds, opening up and grading the streets, policing, etc. But the beauty of the place soon overturned these primitive calculations, and after a while the early restrictions were abandoned, the streets were widened, the size of the lots increased, and palatial villas began to arise beside the modest cottages. The system of leasing gave way to selling outright, and Sea Cliff is now one of the most popular of Long Island's "summer" cities, and has a population estimated at 1,475. It has good hotels, splendid bathing accomodations, and in many respects is a model settlement.

East Norwich was named after their father's birthplace in England by James and George Townsend, sons of John Townsend, of Oyster Bay. They secured a tract of land in 1680, about two miles south of Oyster Bay village, and around their farms a small village gradually sprang up. It was never very populous, it now only claims 425, but at an early period in its history it became a centre of Methodism, and the light started there in 1784 is still burning. The history of East Norwich really centres round its little Methodist church, and as it is curious in many way the following story may not be without interest to the general reader:

"The Rev. Philip Cox, a Methodist minister belonging to the Jamaica circuit, preached in this place in 1784. Services were held at private houses. From 1784 to 1822 traveling ministers of the Jamaica circuit officiated here. In 1822 the Rev. Joshua Burch was located here, and held services at the residence of Thomas Cheshire. During the summer of 1833 a grove meeting was held at Muttontown, then called Christian Hill. This grove meeting was a memorable one; out of it grew a well organized and efficient working Methodist society in this place, and the erection of a suitable building. About forty persons were converted upon this occasion, and among them we find the name of James Vernon. The first thought of this good man after his conversion was to devise plans for a suitable place of worship. He aroused enthusiasm among a few neighbors. They held a meeting in a barn now standing, drew up a paper stating their object, and Mr. Vernon started the list of subscribers with $40, a very large sum in those days. Attached to this paper are seventy-four names, with the amount promsed. George Peters, Thomas Cheshire, Henry Cheshire, John Nostrand, Abraham Remsen, Catherine, Mary and Sally Peters and Andrew C. Hegeman gave $25 each; John Van Cott, $15; Jackson Vernon, George Remsen, John Jackson, John Layton, John Cheshire, Chrales Cheshire, Joseph White, C. & J. Stores, Samuel Mott, Gideon Wright and Townsend W. Burtis, $10 each; and others from five dollars down to one as they were able. The members of the Society of Friends also contributed liberally.
"The Church was built in 1834, and it has been of great use and benefit to the entire neighborhood. it is 31 by 37 feet, located just south of the village, and is worth, with the ground attached, about $2,500. The site was a gift from James Vernon. The parsonage, situated a short distance north of the village, is a two-story structure, built in 1866 or 1867, and, with the plot of ground, worth perhaps $1,500.

Bethpage is another community which for long was a religious center. Thomas Powell, a Quaker from Huntington, bought a large tract of land in 1695, and in 1698 a Friends meeting was established, which was maintained until a year or two ago, when it seems to have died out. The population at present is given as 150, and brickmaking is the only industry, excepting farming.

A much more important religious center was Jericho, a pleasant village near the center of the town. It was settled first about 1650, and the present population of 325 is mainly descended from the first settlers, such as Seamans, Willets, Underhil, Williams. In early times Jericho was known as "The Farms," or Springfield, and the Indians called it Lusum. Most of the early settlers were of the Society of Friends, and meetings for worship were held in the homes of the people with more or less frequency from 1676 to 1787, when a regular meeting house was built. In that tabernacle some wonderful reunions have been held, and Elias Hicks preached in it for several years. It is still a place of worship, but the old palmy days have gone, although the sixty members on its roll make up a congregation as earnest and devoted as any that ever assembled in its walls.

The mention of the venerated name of Elias Hicks recalls to us the town named in his memory and which, although it seemed for a long time incapable of growth, now has a population of 1,300, a number of factories and industries, and appears detined to grow steadily in importance as a manufacturing center, even if it fails to become a resort. It was founded in 1836, when a number of members of the Society of Friends bought part of the land on which it is situated, and laid out a few streets on a map and gave it the name of Hicksville. But the population expected did not appear, and the place seemed dead. In 1842 the Long Island Railway reached it and built a station, an engine house and some storage places, and on the strength of all that the original projectors took heart and erected a hotel and a dozen cottages. But the venture even then seemed a failure. For some reason or other the Rev. Dr. Prime, the historian, was bitterly opposed to Hicksville, mainly because he was opposed to the doctrines of Elias Hicks. he wrote in 1845:

"It [Hicksville] is a village of recent origin situated on the western line of the town about midway of the great plain. It originally consisted of a large depot and workshops, a hotel with its outhouses and five or six small private dwellings. The railroad having been extended to Greenport in 1844, the depot being burned down about the same time, and no additions whatever being made to the private dwellings, the 'village' bids fair to remain in stau quo. Its business, however, is undiminished, as it is a point at which several stages and private conveyances arrive daily with passengers from the adjoining villages, and after remaining an hour or two depart with their return cargoes. Of course, its principal trade consists of hay and oats for horses, and cakes and pies and coffee, or whisky, for men, all of which are articles of foreign production, as there is no land under cultivation. Indeed, all the houses stand 'out of doors' without any enclosure except a small garden attached to the hotel. And although the whole territory is as level as a barn floor and building lots can be purchased far cheaper than in New York, the public seems determined not to buy the. * * * It does not seem likely to be selected as a place of residence of any man in his senses. East New York and Jamesport are privileged spots compared with Hicksville. The name may live, but eh 'village' is a miserable abortion."

All of which is another instance proving that while Dr. Prime may have been a very good preacher, he was a mighty poor prophet. In 1849 Frederick Heyne purchased 1,000 acres of land and several others, Germans, like himself, also purchased land in the vicintiy. In 1850 the idea was broached of making Hicksville a German settlement, and the idea was quickly into practice. Streets were again surveyed and lots staked out, and in 1852 a school house was erected. The people, mostly Germans, began to buy up the lots and build, and long before Dr. Prime died, in 1856, he could have seen a thriving village rising on the spot concerning which he uttered his sarcasms and his lamentations.

Farmingdale is a thriving village of some 1,600 inhabitants, and with its church, educational advantages, its School of Technology, its one or two factories, and its beautiful situation, it is one of the pleasantest little towns to be met with even in Long Island. It lies at the foot of the Comac Hills and is really one of the healthiest places to be found within a wide circle of New York. In olden times it rejoiced in the name of Hardscrabble, but how or when such a cognomen was first applied has not come down to us in any satisfactory shape.
Among the other villages in Oyster Bay township mention might be made of Glen Head, "a summer city," with a population of 500; Plainview, 230; South Oyster Bay, 475; Syosset, 368; Wheatly, 175; Laurelton, 125; Greenvale, 192; Central Park, 375; Bayville, 400; Glenwood Landing, 268; Mill Neck, 200; New Cassell, 225; Woodbury, 350; and Plain Edge, 137.

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