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Freeport History Encyclopedia: B

Freeport History Encyclopedia includes authoritative information about Freeport's past. This guide is perfect for anyone wanting to know more about our village.

B'nail Israel, Congregation

Congregation B'nai Israel was formed around 1915 with 50 Jewish members from Freeport and vicinity. It was reported that before the establishment of B'nai Israel, observant Jews in Freeport walked to Rockville Centre to attend Sabbath and High Holy Day services. In 1915, a Rosh Hashanah celebration took place at Brooklyn Hall with 100 participants.  The service was officiated by Rabbi Isadore Epstein and Cantor Samuel Joffe.  On October 22, 1915, the congregation established a "Hebrew Sunday School" that met at Brooklyn Hall.  Officers of B'nai Israel included Isadore Mayer, president; Harry Barasch, vice president; H.W. Strauss, secretary; and E. Friedman, treasurer. 

A 200 foot x 200 foot site located on Broadway and Mount Avenue was purchased in 1916 from Alex. Ackerman as the site on which B'nai Israel would be built. According to a 1914 map of Freeport, this site was once owned by the Ulmer Brewing Company.

In 1919, the Jewish holiday services for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur were held at the Odd Fellows' Hall on Merrick Road.  Rabbi M. J. Margolis officiated and the committee responsible for the events included, S. Baumann, Philip Nickelsberg, and Harry Barasch.

The congregation held an event on January 12, 1920 to celebrate the satisfaction of their mortgage for the site of their synagogue.  Around June 1920, ground was broken for the new synagogue.  The architect for the $30,000 building was Christian E. Kern of Freeport.  The builder was James H. Lindsay, also from Freeport.  The cornerstone laying ceremony took place on Sunday, August 22, 1920.  Morris Miller, the oldest member of the congregation, laid the cornerstone with a golden trowel.   A fifty piece band from the Brooklyn Hebrew Orphan Asylum participated in the festivities.  A banquet was provided by a delicatessen located at 48 South Main Street and owned by Mayers and Glaser. Speakers at the event included: Hiram R. Smith, Judge Albin N. Johnson, Reverend J. Sidney Gould (Freeport Presbyterian Church), Harry Barasch, Moses Feltenstein, and George Morton Levy.

The congregation held a 21st anniversary service that included a re-dedication service.  Rabbi B. Leon Hurwitz, who headed the synagogue beginning in 1939, oversaw the weeklong festivities that was centered around the theme "Our Collective Responsibility; Democracy, Religion, and Community."  Rabbi Hurwitz  was said to be closely involved in "community enterprises."  He was instrumental in the formation of Freeport's Inter-Faith Clergy Council.

In 1946, membership of B'nai Israel numbered around 500 and Rabbi Simon Noveck headed the congregation. That same year saw the revival of a Boy Scout troop associated with the synagogue which was headed by Sam Jurist and Leo Wurtzel.

On March 16, 1946, B'nai Israel purchased a 16 room building adjacent to the synagogue; it was used for a school and a community center.  This $16,000 investment doubled the synagogue's size.

Rabbi Reuben M. Katz became the spiritual leader of B'nai Israel in 1950. Early in his tenure, a push for a new synagogue began. Ground was broken for the new building on North Brookside Avenue on December 23, 1956.  Harry Shapiro was chairman of the Building Fund Committee.  The new synagogue was dedicated on October 24, 1965. 

Congregation B'nai Israel maintained a section for burials at Montefiore Cemetery in Springfield Garden, Queens, NY.

Click here to see a drawing of the original synagogue of B'nai Israel located at Broadway and Mount Avenue.

See Also:

Appleton, Louis

Barasch, Harry

Johnson. Albin N.

Levy, George M.

Miller, Morris

Odd Fellows' Hall


Union Reformed Temple



"Ceremonies Mark Laying of Temple Israel Corner Stone."  Nassau County Review. August 27, 1920, 1.

"Con. B'nai Israel of Freeport Elects Officers." Nassau County Review. January 16, 1920, 1. Accessed October 31, 2018.

"Freeport's Congregation B'nai Israel Celebrates 70 Years." The Leader. December 4, 1986, 9.  Accessed November 1, 2018.

"Ground Broken for B'nai Temple." Nassau County Review. June 4, 1920, 1.  Accessed October 31, 2018.

"Hebrew." Nassau County Review. September 26, 1919, 1. Accessed October 31, 2018.

"Hebrew Choose Site." Nassau County Review. October 20, 1916. 1. Accessed October 31, 2018.

"Hebrew Sunday School." Nassau County Review. October 22, 1915, 1. Accessed October 31, 2018, 1.

"Rabbi Reuben M. Katz Takes Up Duties at Temple B'nai Israel." The Leader.  January 12, 1950, 1.

"Rabbi Simon Noveck Heads Temple Israel." The Leader.  March 14, 1946, 1. Accessed November 1, 2018.

Temple Messenger. April 1946.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, November 5, 2018.

Babylon Turnpike

Babylon Turnpike, originally called the Hempstead-Babylon Turnpike, was at one time the only road going east.

Researched by Cynthia J. Krieg, May 23, 2016.

Bagatelle, Jerry (Samson)

Jerry Bagatelle (circa 1911-1971), whose legal name was Samson Bagatelle, was a commercial photographer.  Bagatelle was born in Brooklyn and lived for a time in Suffolk County where he managed a Ruby Lane store in Patchogue. He moved to Freeport in 1945 and made his home at 22 East Woodbine Avenue.  The Bagatelle Studio was located at 32 West Merrick Road; it was in business until 1964.

Bagatelle was the official photographer for the Nassau County Republican Committee.  In addition to photographing many local public officials, Bagatelle photographed Governor Rockefeller and President Eisenhower.  He was also closely associated with the Freeport Municipal Stadium where his photographs were used in the promotional materials for the speedway.  On July 6, 1971, Bagatelle was fatally injured during a race when race car driver Gil Clancy accidently hit the photographer. He died the next day at Doctors Hospital. Bagatelle is buried in Mount Ararat Cemetery in East Farmingdale with his wife, Rose (1913-2007), and son Kenneth (1942-2009).  Bagatelle had two other children, Warren (1938-2007) and Jancie. After his death, the Jerry Bagatelle Athlete Scholarship was established and given annually to a deserving Freeport High School senior.

During his life, Bagatelle was active in the Freeport Elks and served seven terms as president of the Freeport High School Fathers and Boosters Club. He was also a member of the Lions Club, the Freeport Chamber of Commerce, and the New York Newspaper Photographers Club.  In 1960, Bagatelle was named news photo editor for The Leader.   

Click here for images related to Jerry Bagatelle.

See Also:

Bagatelle Photo Mart

Doctors Hospital

Freeport Elks



"Jerry Bagatelle Named NewsPhoto Editor of Leader." The Leader. September 16, 1960, 3.  Accessed September 5, 2017.

"Samson Bagatelle; Victim of Accident." Newsday. July 8, 1971, 33.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, September 5, 2017.

Bagatelle Photo Mart

Bagatelle Photo Mart was located at 23 West Merrick Road. Jerry Bagatelle was the owner.

Click here for images related to Bagatelle Photo Mart.

See Also:

Bagatelle, Jerry



Bagatelle Photo Mart (advertisement). Freeporter: Official Publication of the Freeport Chamber of Commerce. 1, no. 11, April 1951, 13.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, May 4, 2017.

Baha'i Faith

Baker, C. Dwight

Cassius Dwight Baker (1873-1957) was the general superintendent of the Long Island Rail Road.  He began his career with the LIRR in 1892 as a clerk and was promoted to general superintendent in 1922. He retired in 1929 and became a real estate broker in New York City.  Baker joined the Board of Transportation as assistant superintendent of operations in 1932, when the first section of the Independent Subway division opened.  In May 1947, Baker was appointed general superintendent.  He retired the following October.  

Baker became a member of the school board in 1913.  He would remain on the board for nearly eight years, resigning in 1920 as the board's president.  Baker was also the president of the Freeport Club.  

Baker's wife, Emma Louise (nee Parshall) (1873-1951), was the first president of the Freeport Suffrage Club.  The Bakers celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in 1942.  They lived at 69 Lena Avenue; they later moved to 75 South Long Beach Avenue.

After his wife's death in 1951, Baker married Rose Tapper.  They lived in Wantagh, NY and maintained a summer home in Southold, NY.  Baker died at the age of 84 in Southold.

See Also: 

Suffrage Movement




"C. D. Baker." Nassau County Review. May 9, 1913, 5.  Accessed August 29, 2018.

"C. Dwight Baker, Transit Aide, 84." The New York Times. August 20, 1957, 27.

"C. Dwight Bakers Wed Fifty Years." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. February 16, 1942, 6. Accessed August 29, 2018.

"Dwight C. Baker Resigns as President of the Board of Education in Freeport." Nassau County Review.  October 15, 1920, 1.  Accessed August 29, 2018.

"Freeport." Nassau County Review. January 16, 1914, 1. Accessed August 29, 2018.

"Freeport Club Sociable Evening." Nassau County Review. December 1, 1916, 8. Accessed August 29, 2018.

"Re-elect C. D. Baker and Cheer Him, Too." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. May 3, 1916, 8. Accessed August 29, 2018.

"Suffragettes Organize." Nassau County Review. March 13, 1914, 5. Accessed August 29, 2018.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, August 29, 2018.


Baker, George O.

George O. Baker (circa 1829-1917) was a Freeport sailmaker who maintained a sail loft on South Main Street. Very little is known about his early life except he was born in New York City and was a Civil War veteran.  Baker established his sail making company in 1861 in the city.  Around 1896, he moved his business to Freeport.  

Baker's sail loft was often used as a gathering place for fishermen and baymen.  In 1899, oyster planters met in the loft to discuss how to keep New York City from diverting fresh water from their oyster beds.  In 1912, fishermen organized at Baker's sale loft to fight a law that prohibited net fishing west of Seaford.  

Baker seemed to be well liked in Freeport.  On Christmas Day in 1903, his friends threw a party for him that included speeches, a floral arrangement, and a certificate signed by his friends..

In 1905, Baker traveled to Pensacola, FL to work as a foreman of a group that made sails for the U.S. government.

Baker was described as a "stanch Democrat" who was politically active in the party. He was an honorary member of Hose No. 1.  Baker died of pneumonia at the age of 88 and is buried in Greenfield Cemetery, Uniondale. 




George O. Baker [obituary]. South Side Observer. December 18, 1917, 8. Accessed November 7, 2020.

George O. Baker [obituary]. Nassau County Review. December 28, 1917, 8. Accessed November 7, 2020.

"Local." Nassau County Review. December 28, 1917, 8.  Accessed November 7, 2020.

"Local." Nassau County Review. December 8, 1899, 3.  Accessed November 7, 2020.

"Net Fishermen Organize. Nassau County Review. June 21, 1912, 12.   Accessed November 7, 2020.

"Surprise for Mr. Baker." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. December 26, 1903, 3. Accessed November 7, 2020.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, November 7, 2020.

Baldwin - History

Baldwin is the unincorporated hamlet located immediately to the west of the Village of Freeport.  This community was known by several different names until the residents decided in November 1900 to name it Baldwin, after Thomas Baldwin who purchased land on Merrick Road in 1825.  It was here he built a hotel (Baldwin House) and operated a general store.  An attempt to incorporate Baldwin in 1925 was eventually abandoned.  Baldwin Harbor is a section of the town, located on Baldwin Bay, that was developed in the early 1900s.

Some residents living in northwest Freeport, including those residing in Stearns Park, are part of the Baldwin School District. This is to due to the fact that Long Island school districts began to be established in the early 1800s, preceding by many decades Freeport's incorporation.  The boundary between Freeport and Baldwin changed in 1957, when the Village of Freeport annexed part of the marsh near Milburn Pond in order to construct Freeport High School.

Prior to 1900, Baldwin was known as: Hick's Neck, Milburn Corners, Milburn, Bethel, Baldwinsville, Fox Borough, and Baldwins.

See Also:

Bethel Schoolhouse

Hick's Neck



Winsche, Richard A. The History of Nassau County Community Place-Names. Interlaken, NY: Empire State Books, 1999.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, December 17, 2016.

Baldwin & Cornelius Co. Inc.

Baldwin & Cornelius Co., Inc. were municipal and civil engineers and surveyors.  Their firm was located at 117 West Sunrise Highway, and was established in 1890.



Voyageur, 1928 (Freeport High School Yearbook).

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, December 27, 2016.


Baldwin, Charles (Chip) T.

Charles (Chip) T. Baldwin (1858-1943) was a first engineer of the  Wide Awake Engine Company and an honorary deputy chief of the Freeport Fire Department.  Baldwin was born in a tollhouse that was located near Merrick Road and South Long Beach Avenue.  His father, Thomas Baldwin, was a toll collector for the Merrick and Jamaica Plank Road Company.  During the Civil War, Baldwin's mother, Angeline Brown, made pants for Union Soldiers.  He claimed that his mother had the first Singer sewing machine in Freeport. The family moved out of the toll house in 1864, after the death of his father.

Baldwin was a municipal gardener for the Village of Freeport.  He and his wife, Minnie, lived on Brookside Avenue and later at 42 Morton Avenue. Baldwin died at the state firemen's home in Hudson, NY.  He is buried in Greenfield Cemetery.



"Freeport Chief is 74." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. October 25, 1933, 23. Accessed September 29, 2016.

"Services for Freeport Fireman Today." Newsday. April 2, 1943, 8.

"Toll Charges on L.I. Highways Date Back to Civil War Days." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. May 28, 1935, 6. Accessed September 29, 2016.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, September 29, 2016.

Banvard, Edward G.

Edward G. Banvard was president of Nassau Motors, Inc., an automotive dealership in Freeport in the 1920s and 1930s.  This dealership was located at 105-109 East Merrick Rd.  In the early 1930s, Nassau Motors dealt in Essex and Hudson automobiles.



Hazelton, Henry Isham. The Boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens Counties of Nassau and Suffolk Long Island, New York 1609-1924 (Volume 5). New York: Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc., 1925.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, July 6, 2016.

Barasch, Harry

Harry Barasch ​(1877-1937) was a prominent merchant as well as a charter member and first president of the  Freeport Chamber of Commerce. Born in Austria, Barasch came to America around 1897.

He was an organizer of Temple B'nai Israel and served as its president for many years.  In 1921, Barasch was also involved in the movement to construct the first permanent home for this temple at the corner of Broadway and Mount Avenue; it was the first Jewish synagogue in Freeport.  The temple would later move to North Brookside Avenue.

Barasch was also one of the original organizers of Playland Park, an amusement park located in Freeport.  The Barasch's Department Store was located at 65 South Main Street.

The Barasch family lived at 95 North Long Beach Avenue.

Click here for material related to Barasch’s.



"Barasch Funeral Services Are Held; Had Heart Attack." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. March 15, 1937, 15. Accessed July 3, 2016.

Hazelton, Henry Isham. The Boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens Counties of Nassau and Suffolk Long Island, New York 1609-1924 (Volume 5). New York: Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc., 1925.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, July 5, 2016.

Barnes, Arthur E.

Arthur E.  Barnes (1862-1937) was a former superintendent of the Freeport Public Schools who was fired due to a sexual harassment claim.  Barnes was born in a log cabin in Galen, NY.  He married Ellen Louise Kelly in 1896.  The couple had one son, Philip H.

Barnes was hired by the Freeport Public School in the late 1900s.  In 1911, allegations came to light of his inappropriate behavior with female teachers.

The minutes of the Board of Education from August 2, 1911 document "rumors" related to Barnes' conduct.  Though no details are given, it is later reported that the rumors relate to Barnes and his inappropriate behavior with a female teacher.    According to the minutes, Barnes explained the circumstances surrounding the rumors, again without details.  A petition signed by 100 Freeporters requesting the retention of Barnes was also received at this meeting. 

During a follow-up meeting on August 8, John S. Lewis, the school janitor and his assistant, Edward T. Smith, testified before the board but what they said was not reported in the minutes.  According to newspaper accounts while on a stepladder to dust a transom window, the janitors witnessed Barnes kissing teacher Inez Armstrong while she sat on his lap.  Barnes was also present at this meeting. He claimed that the teacher kissed him in gratitude for his assistance with paperwork.  At the end of the meeting, the following resolution was unanimously carried: 

"Whereas, the attention of this Board has been called to certain rumors maligning the character of Supt. Arthur E. Barnes, which have been circulated through the school district, and Whereas, this board has carefully investigated the facts and find such rumors gross exaggeration, which have done Supt. Barnes a grave injustice and, Whereas, it finds that while the facts disclosed an indiscretion, they are not sufficient to warrant his removal as Superintendent of our schools, and, Resolved, that this Board take no further action in the matter and Further resolved, that we hereby convey to Supt. Barnes this expression of our confidence and support."

Barnes kept his job, but the contracts with janitors and Armstrong were not renewed.

During a school board meeting on August 21, 1911, a number of citizens presented a written petition demanding that the board remove Barnes a superintendent of the Freeport Schools.  According to the petition, Barnes committed misconduct on at least two occasions:

  • November 1910 - he and a female teacher embraced and kissed in his office in the high school building.
  • June 1911 - while in a locked classroom, a female teacher was observed sitting on Barnes' lap and kissing. Board members Albin Johnson and Henry Crandall voted to open and investigation while S.R. Smith and W. H. Sammons voted against perusing the matter further.

Though it became evident that Barnes' behavior may have involved more than one teacher, trustees Smith and Sammons vote against a proposal drafted by trustees Johnson and Crandall, that would have called for an investigative hearing.

Ultimately, Nassau County Education Commissioner, James S. Cooley opened an investigation.  Testimony was received from seven teachers (Eunice C. Fitch, Mildred Bunting, May I. Rogers, Cassie L. Ostrander, Grace Scroxton, Elizabeth Leith, and Florence Cooper); two high school students (Clinton Brown and Walter Van Riper); one grammar school student (unidentified); and school janitors.

According to newspaper accounts, teachers were afraid of Barnes and it was said one teacher would flee anytime Barnes walked into her classroom. Mildred Bunting, testified that Barnes "placed his hands on her while on a train going into the city." Florence Cooper said that Barnes stroked her arm while traveling from Amityville to Freeport.  Cassie Ostrander testified that she witnessed Barnes put his arms around a teacher.  Another teacher claimed that Barnes would tiptoe through the halls of the schools. Clinton Brown reported that he saw teacher Inez Armstrong in a room with Barnes who "had on neither a jacket nor vest." 

The investigation caused much concern in the district that it was also reported that parents would not let their children return to school until Barnes had left the district. 

In November 1911, a committee of prominent local women drafted a petition and had it signed by over 200 women in the Freeport School District. The petition called for the removal of Barnes as superintendent as well as having his teachers’ license revoked. Stella Foreman was so outraged by this matter that she went to Albany and presented the petition to State Commissioner of Education Draper in person. The drafters of the petition included: Mrs. C. M Flint, Mrs. O. W. Humphrey, Mrs. C. D. Smith, E. H. Van Riper, Stella Foreman, and Eleanor Roe.

Commissioner Cooley, in December 1911, found Barnes unfit to teach in New York State.  His statement read:

"I have carefully considered all the evidence in this case, and in the main I find all the charges sustained.  I hereby annul the diploma of the Albany Normal School to Arthur E. Barnes, and hereby declare him unfit to continue as a teacher or superintendent in the public schools."

Another controversy soon followed the Barnes firing when Principal Roy Leon Smith (1879-1932) was asked to become the interim superintendent of the Freeport Schools.  Smith wrote a scathing letter to the board that was published in the local newspapers.  In the letter he attacked three members of the board (Smith, Cozzens, and Sammons) for how they mishandled the Barnes case.  The principal was immediately fired, which led to trustee Albin Johnson resigning in protest and the students at the school staging a public walkout.  Caroline Atkinson was named acting superintendent (possibly the first female school superintendent on Long Island).

Over 700 residents, including more than 100 women, called for the resignation of the board of education during a meeting at Sigmund's Opera House in January 1912. Samuel R. Smith and Water Crandell retired from the board. 

Three hundred residents voted at the following school board election in May 1912.  One third of the turnout were women.  Johnson remained on the board and became board president. Blanche Trubenback, the only woman on the ballot, received only six votes.

In 1915, Barnes' application for the reinstatement of his license was granted by John H. Finley, Commissioner of Education of the State of New York.  Barnes eventually became the Superintendent of the New York State Department of Education.  He retired from that position in 1927.  He died of a stroke at the age of 75. 

See Also:

Atkinson, Caroline G.



"Arthur E. Barnes, 75, New York Educator." The New York Times. October 11, 1937, 21.

"Barnes Appeal Denied." Nassau County Review., January 12, 1912, 1. Accessed August 5, 2022.

"Board of Education." Nassau County Review. August 11, 1911, 1. Accessed August 4, 2022.

"Clear Teacher in Kissing Case." Brooklyn Daily Union. May 28, 1915, 9. Accessed August 3, 2022.

"Decision in Prof. Barnes Case." Nassau County Review. December 29, 1911, 5. Accessed August 5, 2022.

"The Exoneration of Prof. Barnes." Nassau County Review. June 11, 1915, 1. Accessed August 5, 2022.

"Freeport." South Side Messenger., August 11, 1911, 5. Accessed August 1, 2022.

"Freeport Cleans House, Too." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. May 8, 1912. Accessed October 4, 2022.

"Freeport Residents Ask Board Members to Resign at Once." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. January 11, 1912, 10. Accessed August 5, 2022.

"Janitor Main Witness Against Supt. Barnes." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. September 14, 1911, 10. Accessed August 3, 2022.

"The Kiss that Upset a Town." The Inter Ocean. February 4, 1912, 31. Accessed October 5, 2022.

"Lively School Elections." Nassau County Review. May 10, 1912, 1. Accessed October 4, 2022.

"Many Teachers Testify Against Barnes." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. November 11, 1911, 7.  Accessed August 3, 2022.

"Never Hugged or Kissed Teachers, Says Barnes." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. November 22, 1911, 18. Accessed August 4, 2022.

"New Head of School Board." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. August 9, 1912, 5.  Accessed August 4, 2022.

"Says Barnes is Unfit to Teach in this State." Brooklyn Times Union. December 23, 1911, 1. Accessed August 3, 2022.

"School Board Denounced by Freeport Principal." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. December 31, 1911, 7. Accessed August 3, 2022.

"School Notes." South Side Messenger. December 29, 1911, 5. Accessed August 1.

"Women Against Barnes." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. November 16, 1911, 2. Accessed August 3, 2022.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, August 22, 2022.

Updated by Regina G. Feeney, October 5, 2022.

Barrett, Marcella

Marcella Barrett (circa 1878-1956) was a soprano soloist for many years at Our Holy Redeemer Roman Catholic Church. Barrett was one of the first to sing over Freeport's pioneer radio station WGBB.  She lived at 19 Union Street and had been a resident of Freeport for about 40 years.

In 1928, Barrett publicly challenged a speaker at a Klan rally when he made a false statement against Catholics. During a speech by Alabama Senator J. Thomas Heflin at an event sponsored by the Freeport KKK, Heflin stated that the Catholic Church dictates how Catholics must vote.  Barrett stood up and shouted, "It's a lie! He said the Pope told us how to vote.  I'm a good Catholic, but I wouldn't let the priest or any other man tell me how to vote, not even my husband."  Barrett was removed from the venue.

Barrett died at the age of 78 and is buried in St. Charles Cemetery, Farmingdale, NY.



Ancestry. com

"Mrs. Marcella Barrett." The Leader. May2, 1956, 4. Accessed June 14, 2022.

"2,500 Hear Senator Heflin in Fiery Speech." The Nassau Daily Review. July 31, 1928, 1. Accessed June 14, 2022.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, June 14, 2022.


Baumann Inc.


Bayview (also known as Bay View) was a residential development created by the Onslow-Moore Company around 1906.  The original property consisted of 98 acres on five parcels of land owned by William G. Miller, Charles H. Bedell, James Bailey, Daniel D. Smith, and Daniel Combs.  Local builder O. W. Humphrey built some cottages in Bayview.  Home styles included Colonial villas, Queen Anne cottages, and semi-bungalows.

In 1912, Alvin Sealey, the local agent for Onslow-Moore, donated a large plot of land to be used as tennis courts for the residents of Bay View.

By 1914, 83 houses were built in this section and 20,000 feet of curbs 100,000 feet of sidewalks were laid.  Residents of Bayview enjoyed convenient access to two trolley lines.

The State Banking Department assumed ownership of the remaining property in 1920.  Its land was sold to Stephen P. Pettit and George M. Levy, who auctioned off 450 residential lots and 10 acres of undeveloped property.

In 1922, property owners on Archer Street and Whaley Street (between Bayview Avenue and Locust Avenue) petitioned the Village of Freeport to remove the flower beds that ran down the center of their streets.

Click here for images related to Bayview.

Click here for a map of Bayview section.

See Also:

Elliott Street

Onslow-Moore Company

Onslow Place



"Donates Tennis Courts." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. July 15, 1912, 5.  Accessed August 10, 2017, 5.

"Fine Homes at Bayview." New-York Tribune. October 20, 1912, 7. Accessed August 10, 2017.

"Freeport's New Social Centre is Bayview." The Nassau Post. May 30, 1914, 7. Accessed August 10, 2017.

Village of Freeport Board Minutes. April 28, 1922.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, August 10, 2017.

Bayview Avenue

Bayview Avenue north of Merrick Road was originally called Poor House Road.  The south part of Bayview Avenue was originally called Coe's Neck Road.



Historic Freeport: 70th Anniversary Issue. [1962].

Raynor Town Map, 1868 located at the Freeport Historical Society.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, May 29, 2016.

Bayview Estates

Bayview Estates was a housing development in Freeport that was constructed in the 1940s-1950s.  Each home consisted of seven rooms, with one-and-a-half bathrooms, and featured a picture window.  Houses sold for $15,990.  Govern and Di Giovanna were the builders and Kraham Realty was the sales agent.



"Fpt. Civics Urge Water Mains." Newsday. November 5, 1947, 23.

"In Freeport Home Colony." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. June 14, 1953, 30. Accessed August 10, 2017.


Researched by Regina G. Feeney, August 10, 2017.

Bayview Tennis Club

Bayview Tennis Club (also referred to as the Bay View Tennis Club) was located on Rose Street between Locust Avenue and Elliott Place.  This club featured five doubles courts and one singles court.  Membership was limited to 150 men, 100 women and 100 juniors.  Tournaments were played with other tennis clubs on the south shore of Long Island.  Merritt Cutler and Clyde Carman Wallace were members.

Click here for images of the Bayview Tennis Club.

See Also:

Cutler, Merritt



"Bay View Club." The Nassau Post., August 13, 1915, 4. Accessed August 5, 2016.

"Clyde Carman Wallace." Harvard College Class of 1910. Cambridge, MA: Crimson Printing Company, 1917.

Krieg, Cynthia J. and Regina G. Feeney. Freeport. Charleston, SC: Arcadia, 2012.

                                                                                                                                   Researched by Regina G. Feeney, August 5, 2016.

Beacon House, The

The Beacon House was a restaurant located at 436 Woodcleft Avenue.  Duke Rizzo was the owner.  Its original name was the San-Bar (which moved to Hudson Avenue in 1958).  In 1960, "Dollie Dimples" was identified as the "mixologist" at The Beacon House.

The restaurant later became  Murray's Surfside 6.

Click here for images of The Beacon House.



"News and Views. The Leader. February 11, 1960, 6.  Accessed November 2, 2017.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, November 2, 2017.



Beau Rivage

Beau Rivage was a private bathing beach located at the foot of Westside Avenue (where Fairview Place intersects with Prospect Street). Beau Rivage was opened around 1928, and it was advertised as the "largest and best bathing beach in Freeport."  Admission was 10 cents if you brought your own bathing suit.  The beach offered bathing, dining, and dancing.  According to the village board minutes from 1930, Archer B. Wallace offered the property known as "Beau Rivage Beach" to Freeport to be used as a municipal bathing beach.  The $90,000 price included the land and all "the buildings, equipment and appurtenances."  The Village rejected this offer.

Owners of Beau Rivage included Minnie and Stephen Ferraro, who were the grandparents of State Senator Norman Levy, and Frederick A. Besserer.   It was open from May 1 to September 30.  The beach was popular during World War II due to the gasoline restrictions that made it difficult for residents to travel to Jones Beach. 

A water skiing club was organized at Beau Rivage Beach in 1947.  W. E. Watson was president of the club.

In 1966, the Village of Freeport again rejected a proposal for the village to purchase Beau Rivage and create a municipal beach.  The fact that the small size of the beach could only accommodate less than one percent of Freeport residents was one of the reasons given for the decline of this proposal; other reasons included the limited area for parking; and the costs of purchase and annual maintenance.  The land was subsequently developed for housing.

Click here for images related to Beau Rivage.



"Bathing Popular at Beau Rivage." The Leader. July 8, 1943, 5. Accessed October 22, 2018.

Beau Rivage [advertisement]. The Leader. November 11, 1948. Accessed October 22, 2018.

Beau Rivage [advertisement]. Nassau Daily Review. July 21, 1928, 10. Accessed October 22, 2018.

"Board Rejects Beach Proposal." Village News. February 1966, 2. Accessed October 22, 2018.

"Frederick A. Besserer, 90." Newsday. April 12, 1987, 39A.

Richterman, Anita. "Problem Line." Newsday. May 27, 1981, A27. 

Rose Levy [obituary]. The Leader. May 17, 1990, 13. Accessed October 22, 2018.

Village of Freeport Board Minutes, 1930.

"Water Ski Club." Newsday. July 28, 1947, 4. 

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, October 22, 2018.


Bedell, Franklin J.

Franklin Jay Bedell served as police judge for years 1894 to 1896 and 1898 to 1899.  He was appointed as the first police judge in Freeport and had a rocky career. In February 1896, according to The Brooklyn Eagle, the Trustees of the Freeport Club preferred charges against Bedell to remove him from office as judge, if he did not resign immediately. He was “charged with drunkenness and being found in a barroom when it was necessary to see him in relation to judicial duties.” The clerk of the Board of Trustees was instructed to notify him that his resignation was required by February 21 or he would be removed. He denied the charges and said that it was motivated by his political opponents. The Village Board of Trustees forced him to resign in June of 1896.

Not an attorney, he held a number of interesting positions. In November of 1998, he was made a pond keeper at Massapequa for the Brooklyn Water Works because he was a Democrat. In 1902, he was the station master for the Long Island Railroad. In 1908, he leased the hotel at Scott’s Beach on Lower Main Street. He was a delegate to the 4th District Democratic primary and was elected a delegate to the town convention. He served as a member of the Freeport Board of Trustees from 1905-1920, was a director of the Ever Ready Hose Company at its incorporation and a member of the Freeport Baseball Club as a pitcher and an umpire (1903).

Researched by Cynthia J. Krieg, June 2, 2016.

Bedell's Grove

Bedell's Grove, a popular picnic area in the late 1800s, was located north of the railroad tracks on the west side of Main Street.



"Freeport of Yester-Year." The Leader. December 16, 1965,  8. Accessed October 3, 2017.

Golder, William W. Simple Biography.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, October 3, 2017.

Bedell Street

Bedell Street is named for the Bedell family, a long time Freeport family related to some of the original settlers of the Village.

Research by Cynthia J. Krieg, May 23, 2016.

Bedell's Lane

Bedell's Lane was renamed Archer Street (western section).


Raynor Town Map, 1868 located at the Freeport Historical Society.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, May 29, 2016.

Bee Hive Department Store, The

The Bee Hive Department Store was located at 53 West Merrick Road.



Voyageur, 1929 (Freeport High School Yearbook).

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, March 4, 2017.

Behr, Charles F.

Charles F. Behr (1889-?) was involved in real estate and construction in Nassau County.  He built many homes in Roosevelt and Freeport.  In the 1920s, he specialized in bungalows.  Behr and his wife, Mary, lived at several addresses in Freeport, including 29 South Long Beach Ave. (the house was named "Pasadena") and 221 Seaman Avenue.


Hazelton, Henry Isham. The Boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens Counties of Nassau and Suffolk Long Island, New York 1609-1924 (Volume 5). New York: Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc., 1925.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, July 6, 2016.


Beier's restaurant and soda shop was located at 30 West Merrick Road.  It was originally called Zanetti's, and was then located at 33 West Merrick Road.

See Also:

L. Zanetti's Confectionery



Beier's (advertisement). Freeporter: Official Publication of the Freeport Chamber of Commerce. 1, no. 11, April 1951, 17.

"The Strolling Scribe."  The Leader, October 23, 1941, 3.  Accessed May 4, 2017,

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, May 4, 2017.

Bell Oaks

Beitterick, Edna

Edna Beitterick (1910-1999) was the owner of the bar and grille known as The Poop Deck on Woodcleft Avenue.  Beitterick was affectionately called the "Mayor of Woodcleft Canal." and "Lady Edna."

Beitterick was born in Long Branch, NJ.  She was orphaned at the age of 12 when her mother died of a stroke and her father died from cancer.  Beitterick spent the rest of her childhood living with relatives or in orphanges.  She met her husband George Beitterick, in Woodside Queens.  In 1943, the couple bought a bar called Knipes on Woodcleft Avenue for $5,000.  Knipes would become The Poop Deck.  Her husband died in 1956 at the age of 46.  

In addition to The Poop Deck, Beitterick owned a charter boat dock, a parking lot, and two houses near her bar.  In 1992, Beitterick estimated her properties to be worth over $1 million.  

Beitterick operated The Poop Deck for 53 years until her death in 1999.  As per her will, a memorial boat cruise was held in her honor and opened to everyone who knew Beitterick, including both "friends and enemies."  The cruise included a full buffet, dancing, and top shelf liquor.  Beitterick's ashes were scattered on the bay.

Click here for images related to The Poop Deck.

See Also:

Poop Deck, The



"Beitterick Memorial Cruise." The Leader. May 13, 1999, 6. Accessed January 11, 2019.

Braun, Bill and Norma Braun. "Good-bye, Poop Deck!" The Leader. October 31, 2002, 4. Accessed January 11, 2019.

"G. Beitterick; Bar Operator At Freeport." Newsday.  July 13, 1956, 67.

Ingrassia, Michele. "Keeping Bar Hemingway and Havana Might Come to Mind When You Walk Into the Poop Deck, the Little Bar Edna Beitterick Took Over 49 Years Ago and Hasn't Changed Since." Newsday. September 1, 1992, 48. 

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, January 11, 2019.

Benedict, Francis K.

Francis Knapp Benedict (1810-1899) moved to Freeport from Connecticut in 1850.  He was the keeper of the Queens County Poorhouse located in Freeport.

Benedict, a Mormon, later moved to Salt Lake City. His wife was Emeline Mott Benedict.

See Also:


Poor House Road



"Dr. C.M. Benedict." Biographical Record of Salt Lake City and Vicinity: Containing Biographies of Well Known Citizens of the Past and Present. Chicago: National Historical Record Co., 1902.

Huff, Judie Latshaw. "Francis Knapp Benedict." March 11, 2010. Accessed June 10, 2016.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, June 10, 2016.

Bennington Avenue

Bennington Avenue was named for W. Newton Bennington, a real estate developer of Bennington Park.

See Also:

Bennington Park

Bennington, W. Newton

Research by Cynthia J. Krieg, May 23, 2016

Bennington Park

Bennington Park was developed in 1902 by W. Newton Bennington on land owned by Joseph Raynor.  Streets created by Bennington included: Alexander Avenue; Bennington Avenue; Benson Place; Columbus Avenue; Fulton Street (Merrick Road); Helen Avenue; Liberty Avenue; Rhodesia Street; and Waverly Place.  Rhodesia Street disappeared around 1914 and became an extension of Benson Place.  Bennington Park became an enclave for African Americans and Italians. Most of Bennington Park was lost during urban renewal beginning in the late 1950s into the 1980s.

In 2016, the Freeport Landmarks Preservation Commission commemorated Bennington Park with a road side marker.

Click here for material related to Bennington Park.   

See Also:

Alexander Avenue

American Legion, Morrison-DeLoney Post No. 785

Anderson, Joseph P.M.

Bennington, W. Newton

Bennington Avenue

Benson Place

Bethel AME

Cape Verdean Americans and Cape Verdean Culture in Freeport

Cleveland Avenue School

Coffey, William F.

Colored Republican Club of Freeport

Cotignola, Patrick J. see: The Helm

Crummel, Thaddeus

Drake Funeral Home

Goodridge, Edgar E.

Grissom, Pauline West

Helen Avenue

Irons, John J.

Jones, Pearl

Long Island Colored Citizens Union

Mallette, Ervin M.

Myers Alonzo W.

Myers, Sarah

Nat's Cleaners

Newton Boulevard

Patterson, John T.

Pat's Deli

Potter, Irving S.

Republican Club

Rhodesia Avenue

Robinson, Eugene, E.

Skeete, Curtis T. (Dr.)

Snake Alley

Trojan Civic League

Toomer, Henry W.

Whethers Luncheonette

Wright, Gordon

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, May 31, 2016.

Updated by Regina G. Feeney, October 11, 2018.

Updated by Regina G. Feeney, September 15. 2020


Bennington, W. Newton

W. Newton Bennington (1870-1941) was born in 1870 in Kentucky or Ohio.  He is known for establishing the Bennington Park section of Freeport in 1902.  Bennington was a successful stock broker and horse racing enthusiast.  He is credited with bringing future horseracing hall of fame jockey Frank O’Neill to the United States.  One of his most successful horses was Beldame.  This horse was leased to Bennington by August Belmont II.  In 1904, under Bennington’s management, Beldame was voted horse of the year.  In 1906, Bennington sold his race horse De Mund for $45,000.  Bennington soon fell on hard times.  Between 1907 and 1914, Bennington was institutionalized.  In 1905, it was reported that Bennington had three servants; by 1930 he and his wife Bessie T. Bennington (1857-1944) had five roomers.  Bessie, an actress, was forced to work as a housekeeper according to the 1920 census.  Bennington and his wife are buried together in Kensico Cemetery in plots provided by the Actor's Fund.

See Also:

Bennington Avenue

Bennington Park



"Bennington Out of Asylum." South Side Messenger. June 14, 1912. Accessed May 17, 2016.

"Freeport News." Nassau County Review. November 19, 1909. Accessed May 17, 2016.

"W. Newton Bennington, Best Type of American." Broadway Weekly. August 4, 1909, 7-8.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, May 17, 2016.

Benson House

Benson House was a hotel located at 87 South Main Street.  It was one of the oldest recorded hotels in Freeport.  George Rock Smith was the proprietor​.

In 1919, it was sold by Isidore Mayer of Freeport to George W.  Fuchs.

Click here for a photograph of the Benson House.



"Freeport Had Many Hotels in the Olden Days." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. July 24, 1938, 11. Accessed October 16, 2016.

"Freeport Hotel Sold." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. January 12, 1919, 57. Accessed October 16, 2016.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, October 16, 2016.

Benson Place

Benson Place was named for Benson Smith. 

Research by Cynthia J. Krieg, May 23, 2016

Bergen, Charles M.

Charles M. Bergen (1842-1870) was the eldest son of George W. and Susan (nee Carman) Bergen.  He served in the Union Army during the Civil War.  Bergen died at the age of 27 from "consumption" (possibly tuberculosis) that he contracted during the war.

See Also:

Bergen, George W.



Charles M. Bergen Obituary. New York Herald. January 13, 1870, 9.

Susan Carman Bergen Obituary. The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. May 8, 1899, 7. Accessed October 17, 2017.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, October 23, 2017.

Bergen, George W.

George W. Bergen (1814-1900) was born in Brooklyn where he began his career as a grocery clerk in 1830 with the firm of Thomas Carman, which was located on Fulton Street. He worked in a number of  grocery firms in Brooklyn before joining Carman, Valentine & Company.  He took the company over, by buying out Thomas Carman's interest in this firm in 1838; subsequently, it was renamed  Valentine, Bergen & Co. Bergen's wife, Susan, was the daughter of Thomas Carman.  He moved to Freeport permanently in 1872.

Bergen built his house in 1869 on the south side of Fulton Avenue (now Merrick Road). It featured a 50 foot high tower with many wings and extensions. On the north side was a beautiful flower garden, on the west side a greenhouse, bower and a replica of his house as a birdhouse, which measured 5 x 2 1/2 feet. Behind the house were barns, a carriage house, root cellar, poultry house, workshop, ice house, and stables. A small farm supplied fresh vegetables for the family. North of the house was a beautiful five acre park of grass and trees which stretched from Fulton Avenue (now Merrick Road) to the railroad tracks bounded by Long Beach Avenue, Bergen Place and Pine Street.

Bergen was a director of the Freeport Land Company owned by John J. Randall and the Queens County Agricultural Society which ran the Mineola Fair. He was a member of the Society of Old Brooklynites, an elder and trustee of the Presbyterian Church, and vice-president and trustee of the South Shore Telephone Company, as was John J. Randall. In 1872, he was appointed county treasurer of Queens County; he held that position for three years. He was the chair of the committee on Freeport incorporation in 1892. His activities in Brooklyn included membership in the Harrison & Morton Club in the presidential election of 1888, director of the Brooklyn City Railroad Company, trustee of the Dime Savings Bank and director of the Brooklyn Branch of the Long Island Safe Deposit Company, the Nassau Insurance Company and the Phoenix Insurance Company. 

He was the grandfather of William Clinton Story, for whom the Freeport American Legion Post is named. He died at the age of 87 and is buried in Greenfield Cemetery, Uniondale, NY.

Bergen's granddaughter, Adiene Bergen, married Charles M. Hart, the architect of Columbus Avenue School and the Freeport Memorial Library. The home of Adiene and Charles was located on site of the adult wing of the library.

Click here for images related to George W. Bergen.

Click here for an article describing George W. Bergen's Freeport home.


See Also:

Bergen Place

Bergen Street

Hart, Charles M.

Randall, John J.



George W. Bergen Obituary. The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. November 3, 1900, 22. Accessed June 23, 2016.

Krieg, Cynthia J. and Regina G. Feeney. Freeport. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2012.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Queens County (Long Island) New York containing Portraits and Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens of the County. New York: Chapman Publishing Company, c. 1896.

"South Side Homes." Brooklyn Daily Eagle. July 28, 1873, 3. Accessed June 23, 2016.

Researched by Cynthia J. Krieg and Regina G. Feeney, June 23, 2016.

Updated by Regina G. Feeney and Denise Rushton, July 28, 2016.

Updated by Regina G. Feeney, Jun 21, 2023.


Bergen Place

Bergen Place was named for George Bergen, a grocer in the Valentine Bergen Company which was located in Brooklyn.  He owned large parcels of land in Freeport.

Bergen Place was originally called Park Place.

See Also:

Bergen, George



Fourteen Years Ago." Nassau County Review. August 26, 1910, 1. Accessed May 28, 2016.

Researched by Cynthia J. Krieg, May 23, 2016.

Updated by Regina G. Feeney, May 28, 2016.

Bergen Street

Bergen Street became Ocean Avenue.

See Also:

Bergen, George



Fourteen Years Ago." Nassau County Review. August 26, 1910, 1. Accessed May 28, 2016.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, May 28, 2016.

Berkowitz, Harry J.

Harry J.  Berkowitz (1903-1967) owned the Captain Jack's Fishing Fleet and Freeport Auto Wrecking Company.  He was on the Board of Directors for the Northeast Civic Association and was one of the organizers of the Woodcleft Association, for which he served as its first president.  Berkowitz's other memberships included the Freeport Chamber of Commerce, Sunrise Lodge of the Masons, Republican Club, the Community Party, Freeport Elks Club, Odd Fellows, and the Freeport Tuna Association.  As a hobby, Berkowitz enjoyed collecting coins.  He lived at 215 North Ocean Avenue.

Berkowitz is buried in the Beth David Cemetery (Elmont, NY).

Click here for material related to Harry Berkowitz.



"In the Spot-Lite." The Leader. May 31, 1962, 4. Accessed December 27, 2017.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, December 27, 2017.

Best Lumber Co., Inc.

Best Lumber Co., Inc. sold lumber and building materials.  Formerly known as Post and Wittaker, this business was located at 38 Smith Street in the 1920s.



Voyageur, 1927 (Freeport High School Yearbook).

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, December 23, 2016.

Bethel AME

Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church was founded in 1902 and located in Bennington Park.  Around 1908, the congregation built a church on Henry Street, just south of the railroad tracks.  About 1924, Bethel relocated the church building to Helen Avenue near Waverly Place.  When the area became an urban renewal site in 1974, the congregation built a new church on North Main Street.

Click here for material related to Bethel AME.

See Also:

Bennington Park

Coffey, William F.

Jarvis, Moses



Krieg, Cynthia J. and Regina G. Feeney. Freeport. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2012.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, February 1, 2018.

Updated by Regina G. Feeney, May 19, 2021.

Bethel Schoolhouse (Baldwin)

Bethel schoolhouse (also known as the Bethel Chapel), was the first house of worship as well as the first public school in Baldwin.  It was located near the intersection of Grand Avenue and St. Luke's Place.  According to a history written by the Baldwin Methodist Church, in 1810 local Methodists established a house of worship in an abandoned schoolhouse building. Known as the Bethel Chapel, the structure was 20 feet by 50 feet in size and was reportedly built in 1738.  Around 1813, the chapel began being used as a school and the names Bethel Chapel and Bethel School became synonymous.

Daniel Tredwell, a local history chronicler, describes this schoolhouse in detail in his book Personal Reminiscences of Men and Things on Long Island

See Also:

Hick's Neck



Hick's Neck: The Story of Baldwin Long Island. Baldwin, NY: The Baldwin National Bank and Trust Company, 1939.

"It Happened Years Ago." The Leader. November 19, 1981, 5. Accessed March 12, 2018.

Lister, Doris A. From Sound to Sea: Our Story of Faith 1810-2010. Baldwin, NY: First Church of Baldwin, United Methodist, 2010.

"Salute to Baldwin 'Hicks Neck' Featured Milling, Shipping." Nassau Review-Star. May 14, 1957, 7. Accessed March 12, 2018.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, March 12, 2018.

Big Apple Supermarket

Big Apple Supermarket was located on West Sunrise Highway, between South Bergen Avenue and South Ocean Avenue.



Vasil, Eddie. "News and Views." The Leader. November 30, 1967, 1.  Accessed April 3, 2018.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, April 3, 2018.

Big Ben Food Market

Big Ben Food Market was located at 125 South Main Street.

Click here for information related to Big Ben Food Market.



"Official List of Stores Participating in Dollar Day." The Leader. August 13, 1942, 10. Accessed March 29, 2018.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, March 29, 2018.


Bigar's Creek

Bill's Fish Market

Bill's Fish Market was located at 340 Woodcleft Avenue.  The owners of the store were brothers Bill, John, and Marco Stuparich.

Tragedy struck Bill's Fish Market on September 23, 1958 when Tony Lechich, the owners' nephew, shot and killed Marco following an argument.

Click here for a picture of Bill's Fish Market.



"Fired From Job, Slays LI Uncle: Fired from Job, LIer Kills Uncle Angry, Nephew Slays Uncle." Newsday. September 24, 1958, 1.

"LIer, 25, Guilty of Slaying Kin." Newsday. October 29, 1959, 7.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, June 10, 2016.

Bird, Samuel D. (Dr.)

Dr. Samuel Dearborn Bird (1907-1984) was a Freeport physician.  Born in Brooklyn, Bird grew up at 272 West Lena Avenue.  His father was a village trustee.  After graduating Freeport High School in 1925, Bird attended Holy Cross College.  He completed his medical studies at Bellevue Hospital Medical College in 1933.  He established a practice in Freeport after serving a two year residency at St. John's Hospital in Long Island City.  In 1935, Bird had an office at 35 North Grove Street.

During World War II, Bird served with the Army Medical Corps in Alaska.  

Bird and his wife, Gertrude, had five children and lived at 86 North Long Beach Avenue.  He died at the age of 77 and is buried in Holy Rood Cemetery, Westbury, NY.



Dr. Samuel D. Bird [obituary]. The Leader. August 2, 1984, 17. Accessed July 7, 2020. ttp://

"Dr. Samuel D. Bird Opens His Office." The Nassau Daily Review. July 17, 1935, 45. Accessed July 7, 2020.

"War Heroes to Broadcast from Freeport." Newsday. March 13, 1944, 22. 

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, July 7, 2020.

Bitterman's Ladies Shoppe

Bitterman's Ladies Shoppe was located at 36 West Merrick Road at the corner of Church Street.  This store sold corsets, gloves, hosiery, silk underwear, and dresses. According to a 1929 advertisement, the store was originally located in Brooklyn.



Voyageur, 1929 (Freeport High School Yearbook).

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, March 4, 2017.

Black Tom Island Explosion, 1916

Black Tom Island Explosion occurred on July 30, 1916 shortly before 2 a.m.  Located in the Hudson River close to New Jersey, Black Tom Island was the site of the largest munitions depot in the United States.  

The explosion was the act of German saboteurs using an incendiary device known as a pencil bomb.  It is estimated that the blast caused the equivalent of an earthquake measuring up to 5.5 on the Richter scale. So great was the blast, it was felt 90 miles away. 

Tremors from the explosion were felt in the early morning hours in Freeport.  One Freeport police officer, believing the source of the explosion was local, went around the village looking for its source.  A New York City business owned by James W. Keogh of 187 Whaley Street had its windows blown out. Two Freeport police officers were sent to the city to guard the badly damaged Murray Street hardware store owned by John K. Eldridge of West Merrick Road.

The number of fatalities differs, but a least four people were killed including a 10-week old infant who was thrown from his crib. Property damages was estimated to be over $20 million. Windows from lower Manhattan to Times Square were shattered.

Shrapnel from the blast caused $100,000 in damage to the Statue of Liberty and led to the evacuation of Ellis Island.  The munitions depot was targeted because even though the United States was neutral at this time during World War I, the US was selling war materials to countries involved in the conflict.  However, a British naval blockade of the Atlantic sea-lanes prevented Germany from purchasing American weapons. The goal of the saboteurs was to prevent Britain and its allies from getting these munitions.

Though no saboteurs were ever charges with the crime, in 1939 the German-American Mixed Claims Commission found Germany responsible for the destruction of the depot.  The $50 million settlement against Germany was paid off in 1979.

The Black Tom Island explosion was the first major terrorist attack on American soil by a foreign party and occurred 85 years before September 11, 2001.

Click here for images from the Library of Congress.



"Big Explosion Felt Here," Nassau County Review. August 4, 1916, 1. Accessed September 7, 2022.

Millman, Chad. The Detonators: The Secret Plot to Destroy American and an Epic Hunt for Justice. New York: Little Brown and Company, 2006.

National Park Service. Domestic Sabotage: The Explosion at Black Tom Island. 2013.  Accessed September 7, 2022.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, September 7, 2022.

Blackout, 1952

A blackout in Freeport occurred on February 25, 1952.  For 55 minutes, power to the Village of Freeport was supplied by the Long Island Lighting Company.  The cause of the power failure was a broken gear on one of the pumps at Freeport Electric.



"LILCO Saves Freeport From Blackout." Newsday. February 26, 1952. 29.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, July 14, 2022.

Blackout, 1965

The Northeast Blackout of 1965 occurred on November 9th and left 30 million people in NY, CT, VT, NH, RI, NJ and Ontario, Canada without power for about 12 hours.  However, the Freeport Electric Department was able to restore power to the Village within a few hours.  At the time, Freeport produced 60 percent of its own electric power and purchased 40 percent for the Long Island Lighting Company (LILCO).  Soon after the blackout, the Village officials called for Freeport to generate 100 percent of its electricity.  Power Plant No. 2 opened three years later.



Goldberg, Merle. "Freeport Plans to Go Alone on Power." Newsday. November 16, 1965, 79. 

"More Power to Freeport." The Leader. May 22, 1968, 3. Accessed July 19, 2022.

O'Neill, Jim and Ronald Howorth. "LI's Power Out for 8 Hours." Newsday. November 10, 1965, 1. 

"Report on Blackout." The Leader. November 18, 1965, 8. Accessed March 26, 2021.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, March 26, 2021.

Updated by Regina G. Feeney, July 19, 2022.

Blackout 1977

The Blackout of 1977 occurred in New York City on the night of July 13, 1977.  Caused by multiple lightning strikes, the 24 hour power failure left seven million people, mostly in New York City, without electricity.  Though Freeport was not impacted by this blackout, Freeport did experience its own power failure five days later on July 18th. Around 8:45 p.m., homes located west of South Bayview Avenue and south of West Merrick Road lost power when an overloaded underground cable caught fire on Lexington Avenue and McKinley Place.  The power outage lasted five hours. Around 10:30 p.m., a problem with a transformer fuse caused a power outage for homeowners on Wallace Avenue between West Seaman and Lena Avenues.  Power was restored to this area at midnight. Lydia E. Hall Hospital's backup generator failed, forcing the manual operation of respirators for nine minutes until the generator could be fixed.

The July blackouts were caused in part to very high temperatures that impacted the northeast.  Temperatures between 90-100 degrees led Freeport water consumption to double on July 18, 1977.



"Freeport Fights the Heat." The Leader. July 21, 1977, 1.  Accessed July 15, 2022.

"U.S. Northeast Blackout." UXL Doomed: The Science Behind Disasters, edited by K. Lee Lerner, et al., vol. 3, UXL, 2015, pp. 871-877. Gale eBooks. Accessed 15 July 2022.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, July 15, 2022.

Blackout, 2003

Northeast Blackout of 2003, the largest electrical outage in North America, occurred on August 14, 2003 at 4:10 pm.  An estimated 55 million people living in the Northeast and Midwest of the United States and in the province of Ontario in Canada were effected.  For some, the outage lasted four days. The blackout was the result of a cascading failure; a software malfunction, combined with a power line issue in rural Ohio, caused power transfers to trip until the entire grid shut down. With the trauma of the events of September 11, 2001 fresh in people’s minds, many feared that this blackout had been an act of terrorism.

Power in New York City and Long Island went out around 4:11 p.m.  According to Hubert M. Bianco, Superintendent of Electric Utilities for the Village of Freeport, within minutes of the blackout, electric department staff began arriving back to work on their own initiative.  The first in-village backup generation of power was initiated eight minutes after the blackout began. The remaining backup units were running within two and half hours. In order to maintain traffic signals, water supply, sewage management, and to provide power to customers reliant on life-support equipment, Freeport Electric instituted rolling blackouts. These rolling blackouts consisted of planned one hour outages followed by three or more hours of power.

Freeport's Emergency Operation Center was first utilized during the 2003 blackout. The Freeport Fire Department initiated its standby mode whereby 106 volunteer firemen remained in their firehouses in preparation for possible emergencies. The fire department responded to a total of 43 alarms between the start of the blackout and 1:30 a.m. when standby ended.

At the time of the blackout, Freeport had in place plans to replace Power Plant No. 2's diesel engines with more efficient gas generators. The new power plant opened in 2004.



Bianco, Hubert M. "Watts Up For Freeport Electric." The Leader. September 8, 2003, 11. Accessed July 17, 2022.

"FFD Responds to Blackout." The Leader. August 21, 2003,17. Accessed July 17, 2022.

"How Freeport Weathered the Great Blackout." The Leader. August 21, 2003, 3. Accessed July 17, 2022.

Schofer, Laura. "Power Plant 2 Up and Running." The Leader. May 6, 2004. 1. Accessed July 17, 2022.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, July 18, 2022.

Blanco, Mario E.

Mario Eusebio Blanco (1931-2003) was the owner of Mario of Freeport, a hair salon originally located at 93 South Main Street; it was later relocated to 76 West Merrick Road, and again to 65 South Main Street.  Born in Cuba, Blanco was naturalized as a United States citizen in 1954.

After spending several years in Las Vegas, Blanco returned to Long Island in 1984 and opened a real estate office on Sunrise Highway in Rockville Centre.

Click here for images of Mario of Freeport hair salon.



"Mario Celebrates 20th Anniversary." The Leader. May 4, 1967, 3. Accessed June 5, 2018.

Mario Hair Stylist [advertisement]. The Leader. October 23, 1952, 2. Accessed June 5, 2018.

Mario of Freeport [advertisement]. The Leader. December 8, 1994, 1984. Accessed June 5, 2018.

"Round-About with Rhoda." The Leader. March 8, 1984, 6. Accessed June 5, 2018.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, June 5, 2018.

Blankenhorn, Frederick

Frederick Blankenhorn (circa 1837 to 1892) owned a barbershop and store in Freeport during the 1880s.  Blankenhorn was born in Germany.  In 1862, he enlisted in Company B, Massachusetts 1st and served as a private with heavy artillery.  Blankenhorn was mustered out of the service in 1865. 

Blankenhorn was married to Lucinda L. Blankenhorn.  



Historical Data Systems, comp. U.S., Civil War Soldier Records and Profiles, 1861-1865 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2009.

History of Queens County New York with Illustrations, Portraits, & Sketches of Prominent Families and Individuals. New York: W. W. Munsell & Co., 1882.

National Archives and Records Administration. U.S., Civil War Pension Index: General Index to Pension Files, 1861-1934 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2000.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, June 25, 2016.

Block (building space)

Block was used to describe a single building that included more than one store, apartment, or entertainment space.  In Freeport, these buildings were sometimes named for the person who constructed or owned the property or named for the building's primary use.

Opera Hall Block

Van Riper's Block


Researched by Regina G. Feeney, February 15, 2023.

Blue Goose Inn

Bode, George M.

George M. Bode ​(1881-?) was an attorney, financier, and a member of a Masonic lodge.  He was the law partner of Elvin N. Edwards​​ for two years. Though a resident of Baldwin, Bode maintained  his own general law practice in Freeport. He organized the Baldwin Savings and Loan Association in 1921, the Freeport Savings and Loan Association in 1923, and the Bellmore Savings and Loan in 1923.  Bode served as the director and attorney for all three institutions.

See Also:

Edwards, Elvin N.



Hazelton, Henry Isham. The Boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens Counties of Nassau and Suffolk Long Island, New York 1609-1924 (Volume 5). New York: Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc., 1925.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, June 28, 2016.

Bohack Super Market

Bohack Super Market (also known as H. C. Bohack Co., Inc. and Bohack's) was originally located on the southwest corner of Church Street and Merrick Road. Later, it was located on Pine Street at the corner of South Grove Street (now Guy Lombardo Avenue).

In 1956, an H. C. Bohack Co. store opened at the intersection of North Main Street and Claurome Place.  It was reported that the first 1,000 women to visit the store were given vials of perfume.

Click here for images related to Bohack.



"LI Business Briefs." Newsday. June 26, 1956, 71.

"Mary Margaret Wows 'Em at Opening." Newsday. October 11, 1945, 2. 

"To Record Program at Bohack Store." The Leader. July 31, 1941, 3. Accessed April 14, 2018.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, April 15, 2018.

Bond Street

Bond Street was an unnamed road located between Harris Avenue and East Milton Street until 1924.



Village of Freeport Board Minutes, 1924.


Researched by Regina G. Feeney, December 16, 2018.

Booster Club

Boulevard Hotel

Boulevard Hotel (also known as the Schwab Hotel, Schwab's Tavern, or Schwabie's) was located on Church Street and Olive Boulevard (now Sunrise Highway).  The hotel was opened around 1910 by Louis Schwab and his wife.  The local Excise Commission denied the hotel a liquor license in 1917.  He re-opened as the Schwab's Chop Suey House and Restaurant and continued his cabaret show. The following May, Louis Schwab was arrested for serving creme de menthe to soldiers.  Schwab contended that he only served alcohol-free mint cordials and near beer. The military police accused Schwab of permitting acts of disorder such as singing, piano playing, and loud language after midnight.  He was defended in court by George Morton Levy and acquitted of the charges.  It is interesting to note that Sergeant Richmond, who headed the military police that investigated Schwab, married the chief cabaret singer a few days after Schwab's arrest.

See Also:

Freeport Music Shop

Levy, George Morton



"Anniversary Supper." The Nassau Post. November 26, 1915, 1. Accessed November 7, 2016.

"Plan Beer Garden At Ex-Music Shop." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. March 21, 1933. 19. Accessed January 3, 2017.

"Schwabs Acquited [sic] on Jury Trial." Nassau County Review. July 19, 1918, 1. Accessed November 26, 2016.

Schwab's Chop Suey House and Restaurant [advertisement]. The Nassau Post. October 19, 1917, 3. Accessed May 15, 2019.

"Schwabs Indicted Plead Not Guilty." The Nassau Post. June 28, 1918. Accessed November 28, 2016.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, January 3, 2017.

Updated by Regina G. Feeney, May 15, 2019.

Boyd Murder

Mrs. Eliza C. Boyd (also known as Mrs. E. C. Boyd and Mrs. Kennedy) was found dead on Meadow Island on July 27,1883 in the cabin of fisherman Sam Smith.  Boyd was 84 years old and the widow of a druggist in Brooklyn.  At the time of her death, her estate was said to be valued at $75,000, though this amount was never confirmed. It was reported that her son-in-law, James M. Crawford, took Boyd by yacht to Meadow Island about a month prior to her death. Crawford and his wife stayed in a hotel on the island while his mother-in-law stayed at the cabin. Boyd came to Meadow Island to inspect land Crawford wanted to purchase to build a summer house.  Crawford was familiar with the island and local waterways because years earlier he had been married to Freeporter Abby Eliza Crawford (nee Smith), with whom he had three children and later divorced. 

The 10' x 10' windowless cabin in which Boyd stayed was often described as a hut.  It had one window and was said to be "not fit for a horse to occupy."  Its owner was often referred to a "crazy Sam Smith" in the newspapers. The Brooklyn Daily Eagle called Smith a "demented ex-preacher" and a "hermit."  Boyd's friend Mrs. Royce visited her while she was on Meadow Island. Royce testified that she was told by Boyd that Crawford had beaten her.  Sam Smith testified that when Boyd reached the island she was weak but her health improved until she began taking medicine sent to her by Crawford. Others who spent time with her on the island said she complained of stomach pain and that she died in great agony. Crawford's attempts to remove her body onto his yacht were prevented by Justice George Wallace, who alerted the corner of Boyd's death.

Crawford was a native of Scotland.  The former Mrs. Crawford claimed that Crawford hit her numerous times.  She was granted a divorce from Crawford on the grounds of "improper relations with a woman named Bell."  At the time of the divorce, while working as a sailor, Crawford was convicted of felonious assault and sentenced to prison in Gibraltar. She believed that he feigned insanity to get his sentence reduced.   During the American Civil War, Crawford served in the military using the names of Logan and Murray.  It was reported he was a bounty jumper during the war.  A bounty jumper was someone who agreed to serve in the military, collected a bounty, and left without ever serving. Four years before Boyd's death, it was said he was a preacher at Seamen's Bethel in Boston and Philadelphia.  Alfred Crawford, who spent time on Meadow Island while Boyd was there, was identified as Crawford's adopted son. He testified at the inquiry into Boyd's death.

On July 9, 1883, Crawford came to Freeport and went to the drugstore of E. C. Golder with a prescription he wrote for a bottle of opium and spirits of camphor mixed together.  He told the clerk that he was a physician and signed his name "E.C. Boyd, M.D."  It was reported that bottle of contained enough poison to kill four people.  After Boyd died, Crawford had her buried at the Freeport Cemetery and he performed a gravesite funeral service.  It was noted that Boyd's husband was buried in Greenwood Cemetery in Brooklyn.

Freeport authorities, finding Boyd's death suspicious, opened an investigation.  During their postmortem examination Dr. Denton and Dr. Hammond found a "severe contusion on her right breast and one on the back." The contents of her stomach were also analyzed.  Many people speculated that her well preserved body was the result of poison.

Crawford claimed that he purchased the drugs in Freeport to treat Chagres fever [malaria], the effects of which he said plagued him for many years.  He said that he signed the name of his mother-in-law because it was better known than his own name.  Crawford also claimed that his mother-in-law died of a cold; something she was susceptible to because she was from the West Indies.  He explained the bruises were from medical blistering and that her well preserved body was the result of ice.

Isabella Crawford testified that her husband quarreled with her mother only once and it was over the number of cats her mother kept at her house.

Boyd's married name was Kennedy.  According to her daughter, Isabella, her mother used her maiden name because she did not get along with her father.

Though this case received a lot of press attention, nothing more is reported about it after Boyd's stomach was sent to be analyzed for poison.  There is no record of Crawford being found guilty of Boyd's death.

In 1888, a man was arrested for intoxication in New Jersey. Described as a hermit, he was found to have a bottle of chloroform in his pocket.  The man told authorities his name was James M. Crawford and he used chloroform medicinally.  Months prior to this arrest, Crawford had been arrested for the possible murder of his sister.  At the time, he and his sister were living in "a miserable hut."  The sister's dead body was found on the bed and Crawford never alerted authorities. An autopsy later proved that she died of natural causes.  No connection was made in the press connecting the man with the James M. Crawford involved in the Boyd death.



"The Crawford Examination Concluded." The South Side Observer. September 28, 1883, 3. Accessed September 12, 2022.

"The Death of Mrs. Boyd." New-York Daily Tribune. August 6, 1883, 8. Accessed September 11, 2022.

"The Freeport Mystery." The Roslyn News. September 15, 1883, 2. Accessed September 12, 2022.

"Mrs. Boyd." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. August 4, 1883, 2The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. August 5, 1883, 1. Accessed September 9, 2022.

"New Light." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. August 17, 1883, 3. Accessed September 9, 2022.

"Rumors about the Death of Mrs. Boyd." New-York Daily Tribune. August 6, 1883, 8. Accessed September 11, 2022.

"A Sailor Imprisoned at Gibraltar Sued for Divorce." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. December 7, 1877, 4. Accessed September 12, 2022.

"The Suspicious Death of Mrs. Boyd." New-York Daily Tribune. August 21, 1883, 5. Accessed September 11, 2022.

"The Tragedy in the Hut." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. August 5, 1883, 1. Accessed September 9, 2022.

"Under Arrest." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. August 9, 1883, 4. Accessed September 9, 2022.

"With Chloroform in His Pocket." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. February 3, 1888, 4. Accessed September 12, 2022.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, September 12, 2022.

Bracco, Benjamin G.

Benjamin G. Bracco (1914-1981) was a long-time commercial fisherman and owner of Captain Ben's Fish Market located on Woodcleft Avenue. Born in Ckiusi Lussignano, Austria (now Croatia), settled in Freeport and fished this area for 40 years. Bracco was known to fish alone, a very dangerous endeavor, on his 45-foot Freeport Point Shipyard built trawler, Sturgeon

Bracco purchased a fish market on Woodcleft Avenue in 1945.

Bracco and his wife, Sarah, had four children: Jerry, Carolyn, Valli, and Tina.

See Also:

Sturgeon (Ship)



Benjamin Bracco obituary. Newsday. November 23, 1981, 27.

Karcich, Grant. From the Kvarner to the New World: Losinj Mariners and Shipbuilders in the Americas 1748-1974. Lakeshore Maritime Press, 2016.

Bragg's Fine Clothes

Bragg's Fine Clothes (also known as Bragg's and Bragg's Men's Clothing) was a men's clothing store located at 107 South Main Street in Freeport with another location at 294 Front Street in Hempstead.  

 Click here for images related to Bragg's Clothes.



Bragg's [advertisement]. Nassau Daily Review-Star. July 30, 1947, 16.  Accessed August 19, 2021.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, August 19, 2021.

Braithwaite, George I.

George I. Braithwaite (circa 1878-1936) was the founder of Braithwaite's Stationers.  Born in England, Braithwaite opened his store in Freeport in 1912.  He was a member of the Spartan Lodge and the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. He and his wife, Louise (nee Crafts), lived at 10 Church Street.  In 1914, Braithwaite served as librarian to The Freeport Choral Society.

Braithwaite died at the age of 58 and was buried in Fresh Pond, Brooklyn.

See Also:

Braithwaite's Stationers



"Braithwaite Rites Held at Freeport." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. February 3, 1936, 21. Accessed February 15, 2019.

"Choral Society Grows." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. October17, 1914, 4. Accessed February 15, 2019.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, February 15, 2019.

Braithwaite's Stationers

Braithwaite's Stationers opened on June 17, 1912 and was originally located at 50 South Main Street.  Later, the store was located at 15 Railroad Avenue and then 10 Church Street.  The store was founded by George I. Braithwaite (circa 1878-1936).  Around 1951, Louis H. Martin became the owner of the store.

Click here for images related to Braithwaite's Stationers.

See Also:

Braithwaite, George I.



"Braithwaite Rites Held at Freeport." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. February 3, 1936, 21. Accessed February 15, 2019.

"In the Spot-Lite." The Leader. February 24, 1966, 8. Accessed February 15, 2019.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, February 15, 2019.

Branch Avenue

Branch Avenue was known as East Bayview Avenue prior to 1924.



Village of Freeport Board Minutes, 1924.


Researched by Regina G. Feeney, December 16, 2018.


Broadway (along with parts of Columbus Avenue and Grand Avenue) was originally called Crooked Lane.


Raynor Town Map, 1868 located at the Freeport Historical Society.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, May 29, 2016.

Brooklyn Avenue Park

Brooklyn Avenue Park (sometimes referred to as Station Park) was located on Brooklyn Avenue adjacent to the railroad tracks from about North Bergen Place to slightly east of North Grove Street. It was established around 1909.  The village budgeted $500 for maintenance of the park in 1917.  The following year, the village budgeted $300 for park maintenance.  

In 1918, a committee of 50 residents designed a wooden Honor Roll to be placed in the park that would list the names of the Freeporters serving in World War I.  The Lush Sign Painting Corporation, owned by Charles H. Lush, constructed the Honor Roll at a cost of about $125 (the Honor Roll was removed from the property in 1929).  The Freeport Fire Department unveiled a monument and dedicated an elm tree to Henry Theodore Mohr in the park near Ocean Avenue in 1919.  Mohr was the only Freeport fireman killed in action during World War I (later that monument was moved to the grounds of the Freeport Memorial Library).  In 1927, a ceremony rededicating the Mott Brothers monument was held at the Brooklyn Avenue Park.

In 1928, the Village approved the spending of $5,000 for landscaping of the park.  The same year, the area on Brooklyn Avenue between North Ocean Avenue and North Grove Street (opposite Brooklyn Avenue Park) was zoned as a business district.  

During the 1920s and 1930s, concerts were held at the park. In 1932, it was reported that 2,000 residents attended a Freeport Fire Department Band concert at the Brooklyn Avenue Park. 

The Brooklyn Avenue Park disappeared after the Long Island Rail Road tracks were raised in the late 1950s.

See Also:

Honor Roll, World War I



E. Belcher Hyde. "Northwest Section." 1914 Map.

"Firemen's Welcome Home and Field Day." Nassau County Review. July 11, 1919, 1. Accessed March 9, 2019.

"2,000 at Concert." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. July 11, 1929, 14. Accessed March 9, 2019.

"Village Tax Rate $1.15." Nassau County Review. July 13, 1917, 1. Accessed March 9, 2019.

"Village Tax Rate $1.19." Nassau County Review. June 28, 1918, 1. Accessed March 9, 2019.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, April 2, 2019.

Brooklyn Water Works

Brooklyn Water Works, located on the west side of North Brookside Avenue, was a three-story brick Romanesque Revival building which was designed in 1888 by Frank Freeman. Freeman (1861-1941) a noted Brooklyn architect, also designed the Eagle Warehouse and Storage Company in 1893 and the Old Brooklyn Fire Headquarters in 1892. Originally called the Milburn Pumping Station, the Brooklyn Water Works was one of a series of pumping stations that provided water from a 2,000-acre watershed to the City of Brooklyn. Freeport's oyster industry was adversely affected by Brooklyn's demand for water.

By the 1920's, upstate New York became the major supplier of water to New York City. The 48-inch-wide iron conduit that runs from Freeport to Queens was used for emergency reserve until New York City sold the site to Nassau County in 1977. In 1986, Freeport gave the Brooklyn Water Works landmark status. That same year, Gary Melius of Carle Place, bought the site for $1.4 million. Efforts to turn the building into condos and later a nursing home both failed.  In 1988, the building was damaged beyond repair in a major fire. The Village of Freeport settled a $3.5 million lawsuit with Gary Melius. The remaining structure was demolished in 2010.  In 2012, Nassau County purchased the land for $6.22 million.  The site, which is south of the Brookside Preserve, cannot be developed.  The South Shore Audubon Society currently maintains the property.

Click here for images of the Brooklyn Water Works.



American Institute of Architects, Long Island Chapter. AIA Architecture Guide to Nassau and Suffolk Counties, Long Island.

"Brooklyn Water Works Sale Approved by NIFA." The Leader. September 6, 2016, 1. Accessed May 13, 2016.

"Long Island: A Romanesque Revival Water-Pumping Station to Be Expanded and Made Into 48 Condominiums." The New York Times. 7 September 1986: 56.

"New Promise for Neglected Landmark." Newsday. 20 January 1995: D1.

Krieg, Cynthia J. and Regina G. Feeney. Freeport. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2012.

"Then......Now." The Leader. August 12, 2010, 1. Accessed May 13, 2017.

"Village Settles Water Works Lawsuit for $3.5 Million." The Freeport Baldwin Leader. November 19, 2009, 22. Accessed May 13, 2017.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, May 13, 2017.

Brookside Avenue

Brookside Avenue was called previously called Treadwell's Lane.


Historic Freeport: 70th Anniversary Issue. [1962].

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, May 28, 2016.


Brough, Frank T. (Dr.)

Dr. Frank T. Brough (1858-1930) was the physician who took over Dr. Edwin T. Carman's medical practice in 1929 after the latter lost his license for performing an abortion.  On September 13, 1930, Brough was arrested for malpractice after his patient, Sarah Ackerman, ended up in the hospital.  It was suspected that the doctor had performed an abortion on Ackerman. While in police custody, Brough's collapsed and died. A prison guard saw him swallow a pill with a glass of water he requested. It was suspected Brough tried to commit suicide by ingesting morphine.  However, an autopsy failed to find morphine in his system and tests for other substances were not done. Cause of death was said to be from a heart condition.

According to Robert Schmidt, a friend of Ackerman who accompanied her to Dr. Brough's office, the doctor charged $50 for the procedure. 

Brough was born in Bridgewater, NY. He graduated from the London School of Pharmacy and later the Columbia School of Medicine in 1889.  He and his wife had two sons, Hazen and Frank.  Frank was killed in World War I while serving with the Marines in Belleau Woods.

Brough supported family planning. In a letter to the editor in 1929, he criticized opponents of birth control. 

Early in Brough's career he was arrested in Manhattan and charged with "committing a nuisance."  According to Brough, he had been working with another physician "helping him to do something for someone who was doing something for the poor." 

At the time of his death, Brough was 73 years old.  He lived at 53 West Merrick Road. He was cremated and buried with his wife, Harriet, at the First Dutch Reformed Churchyard in Hackensack, NJ.  

Sarah Ackerman was 23 years old and divorced.  She lived on West Avenue in Hicksville with her mother.  Though newspapers reported her condition as "critical" and that she "was not expected to recover," additional information about her death or recovery were not reported.



"Doctor Accused of Malpractice Collapses in Jail." Brooklyn Times Union. September 19, 1930, 42. Accessed June 9, 2022.

"Doctor, Held in Freeport Case, Dies." The New York Times. September 21, 1930, 32. 

"Dr. Brough Died of Heart Malady." Brooklyn Times Union. September 21, 1930, 58. Accessed June 9, 2022.

"Dr. Frank T. Brough" [advertisement]. The Nassau Daily Review. February 15, 1929, 2. Accessed June 9, 2022.

"Freeport Doctor Held By Police." The Nassau Daily Review. September 19, 1930, 3. Accessed June 9, 2022.

"Jailed Physician Who Killed Self To Be Cremated." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. September 21, 1930, 16. Accessed June 9, 2022.

"Letter to the Editor." The Nassau Daily Review." November 23, 1929, 4. Accessed June 9, 2022.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, June 9, 2022.

Brown, Delwin F.

Delwin F. Brown (1829-1903) was a teacher of penmanship, drawing, and bookkeeping who lived on Grand Avenue near Babylon Turnpike.  He was associated with the Adelphi Academy in Brooklyn for 16 years (1878-1895).  He left Adelphi in 1895 and began working for the Freeport Schools in 1896. 

While living in Brooklyn in 1854, Brown won an award at the Crystal Palace for "best specimens off hand commercial and ornamental penmanship and pen-drawing, with special approbation for uneducated skill in his art."

He was well known for his India ink production of the Lord's Prayer which won a medal at the World's Fair. This large calligraphic work, featuring the Lord's Prayer and surrounded by vignettes of famous religious paintings, took Brown six years to create.  The work sold for $10,000.  Brown purchased the piece back after the owner's death for $6,000 and donated it to the Adelphi Academy.  The work was destroyed in a fire at Adelphi.

Brown's son, Delwin T. Brown, was arrested in 1896 for assaulting his wife and a neighbor while intoxicated. The following year, Brown paid a $5.00 fine on behalf of his son; this time the son was arrested for clubbing a horse as he drove it through the village.

It was reported that after Brown suffered an injury to his right hand, he gave up his pen work and devoted his time to gardening. Brown died at the age of 75 and is buried in Greenfield Cemetery, Uniondale, NY. 



"Adelphi's Outlook." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. September 19, 1895, 6. 2. Accessed December 13, 2017.

"Awards at the Crystal Palace." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. January 20, 1854, 2. Accessed December 13, 2017.

"Delwin F. Brown." The New-York Tribune. November 30, 1903, 14. Accessed December 13, 2017.

"For Clubbing a Horse." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. July 18, 1897, 12. Accessed December 14, 2017.

"Interfered to Help a Woman." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. April 20, 1896, 5. Accessed December 14, 2017.

"Long Island School News." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. September 1, 1896, 5. Accessed December 13, 2017.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, December 14, 2017.

Brown, Letitia E.

Letitia Ernestine Brown (circa 1894-?) (also known as Letty, Lettie, or Tish), was an African American woman who gained international notoriety in the late 1920s when she sued her White millionaire boyfriend, Carleton Curtis, for alimony.  Though their marital status was not questioned in court (because they were never officially married) it was established that Curtis purchased a home for Brown on Colonial Avenue in Freeport and, on November 11, 1923, established a $250,000 trust fund for her.  According to newspaper accounts, the trust fund gave Brown a monthly income of approximately $1,000.  During the years they were together, Curtis assumed the name Harry Brown.

In the early 1930s, The New York Amsterdam News published a series of articles chronicling the relationship between Brown and Curtis.  According to the articles, Letitia Brown said she was born in Florida and was married at age 14 to James Brown at Port Tampa. Six months later, her husband died, leaving her pregnant. Her child died soon after childbirth.  She found employment as a maid with the Diaz family and travelled with them to New York.  After the Diaz family left for Spain, Brown found employment with a Mrs. Shaw who lived in Harlem.  It was here she met and became the girlfriend of Leon Travers.  In September of 1911, she met Carleton Curtis.  Curtis' visits to Brown's apartment caused her landlady so much concern that she asked Brown to move out in November 1911.  Curtis rented her an apartment at 357 West 54th Street.  Brown claims that it was at this apartment that couple exchanged vows.  Though Curtis maintained his own apartment at 49 West 55th Street, he spent enough time at Brown's residence that it made an impression on Brown's neighbors.

Curtis and Brown first lived together on West 54th Street.  Brown claimed Curtis gave her some of his family heirlooms including a silver fruit bowl bearing the Curtis family crest that had been given to Curtis' mother as a wedding present. Brown's Harlem apartment was furnished with expensive draperies and art that was paid for by Curtis. 

In 1914, after a "lovers quarrel," Brown sailed to France alone.  After locating her in Normandy, Curtis followed her abroad and was able to convince her to return home with him.

Curtis purchased a house in Freeport in 1917 because he feared the Germans would bomb New York City.  According to Freeport tax documents, the house and property at 22 Colonial Avenue were in Letitia Brown's name.

Brown began an affair with Garland Patton after they met in Atlantic City in 1924, while Curtis was travelling abroad.  She and Patton spent time together in Paris where she purchased a pedigreed dog named Tirko for the sum of $500 for Patton. Brown spent so much money on gifts for Patton that she began to run out of money.  When Curtis retuned to Freeport, she told him the Ku Klux Klan had threatened her and she need to pay blackmail money to them.  It was reported that she used that money to buy Patton a new car. She also took out at $5,000 mortgage on the Freeport home and financed a trip to Los Angeles for Patton that included a chauffeur.

Brown's affair with Patton came to light when Patton's wife, Helen, sued Brown for $25,000 for alienation of affection.  It was reported that Brown convinced Curtis that she and Patton were only friends and that she was being extorted for money. Believing Brown, Curtis paid attorney Augustus Meier to represent Brown in the lawsuit.  In addition to getting Patton's wife to agree to accept a $1,500 settlement, Meier got the original copies of Brown's letters to Patton. The letters made it clear that Brown made up stories to get Curtis to give her more money that she then used to buy gifts for Patton.  This ended Brown and Curtis' romantic relationship.  The loss of Curtis' financial support promoted Brown to sue him for alimony.

During the trial about 25 Freeporters were called to testify that Brown and Curtis were a couple.  Some of those called to testify included James Cozzens, George Reynold, Charles Fritz, Ernest Ault, Elva Myrtle Wallace, and Dr. Edwin Carman.

Brown told a reporter from The New York Amsterdam News that she regretted suing Curtis.  Even after the affair came to light, he still provided her with an income of $100 a week.  To avoid photographers before the trial Brown went to Bermuda.  It was alleged in the article, but not confirmed by Brown, that Carleton gave her $500,000 to let the court decision stand and not file an appeal. What became of Brown is unknown.  She speculated to the reporter that she might go back to Russia to resume her dance career or travel to Egypt to write her memoirs. Other accounts said that Brown died broke and an alcoholic.  

The negative publicity surrounding the case caused Curtis to retreat to Asbury Park, NJ where he rented a room.  In August 1929, Curtis changed his will and left his landlady and her family $500,000.  Brown was not mentioned in the will.

Carleton Curtis (1872-1929) was the son of Jeremiah Winslow Curtis and Mary Estelle Curtis. In 1901, newspapers reported that Curtis paid the fine for Annie Kramer (also known as Sadie Gold), a 19 year old woman charged with begging.  It was reported that after he paid her fine, he took her to dinner. According to Curtis, he wanted to help her because it was the Christmas season and he enjoyed charity work.  When he found out that Kramer was most likely a professional beggar and had $300 in the bank, he regretted his actions.  

Curtis died on November 18, 1929 and is buried in his family's plot in Woodlawn Cemetery, Bronx, NY.

Garland Patton had a few run-ins in with the law in the 1930s. He was sentenced to four years in prison for burglary and was involved in a white-slavery prostitution ring (which he avoided conviction by providing testimony at the trial). 

Garland later became a waiter on cruise ships to Europe. In the 1950s he became the first African American Chief Steward for the United States Lines. He retired in 1965 and died four years later at the age of 78.  He and his wife Helen divorced.  She married John W. Coleman in 1935.  According to her 1974 obituary, “During the 1920s she travelled extensively throughout Europe and always retained her love for Paris, the city that recognized her as the beautiful and gracious woman she was.”



"Commonlaw Wife Sues Carl Curtis, White Millionaire." The Enterprise. March 23, 1928, 1. Accessed April 29, 2022.

Cooke, Marvel. "Real Life Story of Romance Intrigue, Blackmail, Death,: Love--Doublecross--Blackmail." The New York Amsterdam News. May 20, 1939, 13. 

"Curtis' Dusky Queen Loses to Kiss Echo."  Daily News. March 20, 1928, 3. Accessed April 28, 2022.

"Frantic Depositors Plead for Their Savings." The New York Times. December 12, 1901, 16. Accessed April 28, 2022.

"Garland Patton, Gigolo." The New York Amsterdam News. December 16, 1931, 1. 

"Garland Patton, Gigolo." The New York Amsterdam News. December 23, 1931, 1. 

"Garland Patton, Gigolo." The New York Amsterdam News. December 30, 1931, 1. 

"Garland Patton, Gigolo." The New York Amsterdam News. January 6, 1932, 11. 

"Garland Patton, Gigolo." The New York Amsterdam News. January 13, 1932, 11. 

"Garland Patton, Gigolo." The New York Amsterdam News. January 20, 1932, 11. 

"Garland Patton, Gigolo." The New York Amsterdam News. February 3, 1932, 11. 

"Garland Patton, Gigolo." The New York Amsterdam News. February 17, 1932, 10. 

"Garland Patton, Gigolo." The New York Amsterdam News. February 24, 1932, 11. 

"Garland Patton, Gigolo." The New York Amsterdam News. March 2, 1932, 11. 

"Garland Patton Among Those Held By Gov't. As Alleged White Slavers." The New York Age. May 2, 1936, 1.

"Garland Patton Dies." The New York Amsterdam News. September 13, 1969, 28.

"Gigolo Patton Pleads Guilty to Burglary." The Chicago. March 6, 1932, 13.

"Loses Alimony Suit Against Millionaire." The Enterprise. March 30, 1928, 1. Accessed April 29, 2022.

"Millionaire is Sued as Common-Law Mate." The Washington Times. March 16, 1928, 2. Accessed April 29, 2022.

"Millionaire's Colored 'Wife' Denied Cash." The Nassau Daily Review. July 28, 1927, 6. Accessed April 29, 2022.

"Miss Carey Presses her Case."  New-York Tribune. December 12, 1901, 6.  Accessed April 28, 2022.

"Mrs. Helen Coleman Dead at 78." The New York Amsterdam News. December 7, 1974, C4.

"Scandal Suit Coming." The New York Amsterdam News. July 27, 1927, 1.

"Subpoenaed to Testify in Suit of Negro 'Wife.'" The Nassau Daily Review. March 16, 1928, 1. Accessed April 28, 2022.

Whitney, Baynard. "Half Million May End Sensational Suit." The New York Amsterdam News. October 17, 1928, 1. 

"Wonder What Became of Sweet Mama Letitia." Afro-American. May 2, 1936, 12. 

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, May 24, 2022.

Updated by Regina G. Feeney, August 11, 2022.

Updated by Regina G. Feeney, March 31, 2023.

Brown, Walter G. "Jumbo Brown"

Walter George "Jumbo" Brown (1907-1966) was a professional baseball player and Freeport merchant.  He began his major league career in 1925 as a pitcher for the Chicago Cubs.  He later played four seasons with the New York Yankees, including the World Series winning teams of 1932 and 1936.  Brown ended his career with the Giants in 1941.

Brown lived in Freeport and ran a sporting goods store, which was located at 15 West Sunrise Highway.  He died on October 20, 1966.

Click here for images related to Walter "Jumbo" Brown."

Click here for Walter "Jumbo" Brown's Career Statistics.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, December 19, 2017.


Brownie was a dog owned by the Freeport Police Department.  Since Freeport's K-9 Unit was not established until 1962, Brownie was a considered a mascot or pet and not a working dog. Brownie walked into the Freeport Police headquarters one summer and became the department's pet. Brownie was said to accompany police officers on their rounds.

Brownie's breed was unknown.  In one source, Brownie was described as being a Chow/Shepherd mix; in another he was said to a "a little bit of everything".  In 1944, Brownie disappeared for a few days, but was returned to Freeport after he showed up at the Hempstead Police Department.

Brownie died in 1945 and was buried in the Bide-a-Wee Pet Cemetery, Wantagh, NY.

See Also:

Law Enforcement



"'Brownie' Pet of Police, Back at Freeport Station." Nassau Daily Review-Star. November 27, 1944, 5. Accessed September 11, 2019.

"The Cops' Dog Goes to Its Last Resting Place." Nassau Daily Review-Star. April 7, 1945, 11. Accessed September 11, 2019.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, September 11, 2019.

Brunnella Street

Brunnella Street was named for Brunnella Meister. Her father was Albert Meister, the developer of Meister Beach.

See Also:

Meister Beach

Researched by Cynthia J. Krieg, May 23, 2016.

Buck's Delicatessen

Buck's Delicatessen was located at 372 Atlantic Avenue. This location was advertised as the William Buck Delicatessen in 1948 and Buck's Delicatessen in 1955.

Click here for images of Buck’s Deli.



Buck's Delicatessen [advertisement]. The Leader. May 26, 1955, 9. Accessed October 11, 2018.

William Buck Delicatessen [advertisement]. The Leader. November 11, 1948, 9. Accessed October 11, 2018.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, October 18, 2018.

Buckley, Edwin S.

Edwin S. Buckley (1902-1969) was the owner of Ed Buckley's West End Boat Yard.

Buckley, who was born in Brooklyn and had lived in Westbury, was a graduate of Pratt Institute.  In the early 1940s, Buckley worked as a photographer and columnist for Newsday.  His bowling column for Newsday was entitled "Down the Alley."  Buckley was a life member of the National Press Photographers Association.  He also was a press photographer for the Nassau Review-Star and the Brooklyn Daily Eagle.

In the 1930s and 40s, Buckley was the president of the Jones Beach Surf Fishing Club, later called the Jones Beach Fishing and Game Club.

Buckley was a spokesman for the rights of fishermen and boat owners.  In 1961, he successful challenged the summons he received for having his registration number affixed to the windshield of his boat.  Buckley believed that the New York State navigation law codified in 1960 was ambiguous as to where the registration was to be placed.  The law said "bow" but did not define that location.  After giving as evidence the dictionary definition of "bow," which is defined as the "forward part of the vessel," Buckley was acquitted in First District Court.

Buckley, who moved to Freeport in 1932, lived at 419 Southside Avenue and was a past patron of the Order of the Eastern Star, a member of the Spartan Masonic Lodge, the A. M. Kismet Temple, Long Island Scottish Rites, and the Freeport Elks Club. He is buried in Greenfield Cemetery, Uniondale, NY.



"Boatman Sails Craft Into Teeth of the Police." Newsday. June 6, 1961, 29.

"E. Buckley, 66, Boater, Columnist." Newsday. January 4, 1969, 24.

Edwin S. Buckley [obituary]. The Leader. January 9, 1969, 7.  Accessed December 27, 2018.

"Rod and Gun." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. February 4, 1947, 14. Accessed December 27, 2018.

Vasil, Eddie. "News and Views." The Leader. January 9, 1969, 2.  Accessed December 27, 2018.

Researched by Regina G. Feeney, December 27, 2018.


Barbers and Hairdressers