The East Hampton Historical Society
101 Main Street. East Hampton
A visit to the Hamptons typically evokes a sense of nostalgia and history for anyone that visits. Driving around, walking through a town center and many homes both reveal and hint at the area’s past. One way to learn more about earlier times in the Hamptons is through visiting some of the properties and buildings preserved by the East Hampton Historical Society.
The society’s mission statement explains what the society strives to do, and what you can expect to find in any interaction with them:
The East Hampton Historical Society serves the residents and visitors of East Hampton by collecting, preserving, presenting and interpreting the material, cultural and economic heritage of the town and its surroundings.
One of the ways they work to fulfill this mission is by taking care of several historic buildings – all of which you can visit. The society also offers exhibits, programs, publications, and other presentations to disseminate historical knowledge and information.
The following highlight some of the East Hampton Historical Society’s properties that you should consider visiting.
East Hampton Marine Museum
301 Bluff Road, Amagansett
The museum is a great place to learn about local fishing and maritime history. Before the Hamptons economy became dominated by tourism, fishing was one of a few backbones of local commerce and employment. While its significant as a driver of the local economy has been diminished it remains an important part of the many residents lives. Visitors are often unaware of this part of Long Island’s past nor do they know there still exists a significant fishing industry here. A visit to the museum can help to learn more about fishing and the connection between Long Islander’s and the sea.
The Mulford Farm
10 James Lane at Montauk Highway. East Hampton
The property and building are a rare authentic example of early English Colonial farm settlement. The main buildings found here include a farmhouse, barn and smokehouse. The home was originally built in 1680. While a few changes were made over the next 70 years of its existence, its structure today is the same as it was in 1750. The current furnishings, which you can see when you tour the home, reflect the period around the 1790s. The Barn was built in 1721 and is a significant historical example of eighteenth century barn building.
The Mulford Farm property also has a wonderful garden, one of three such gardens on historical society properties that are lovingly cared for by the Garden Club of East Hampton.
Main Street. East Hampton
This circa 1731 building originally served as a town government meeting hall. Town trustees would gather in the building to pass laws and discuss the affairs of the settlement. Not only is it oldest town government building on Long Island, it is also the oldest schoolhouse building too. In fact the exhibit housed there today depicts an 18th century schoolhouse scene.
The building was moved to its current location by the historical society in 1958.