Lost Northport

Remembering Buildings and Businesses Lost to History

The beauty of Northport Village and the neighborhoods that make up our community is found in the layers of history so many of the old buildings hold. The tower of the Thompson Building, the church spires, the trolley tracks and the beautiful Victorian homes and old farmhouses provide stories about the families and businesses who contributed to the history and character of the town.
Here we will look at some of the properties that have been lost to development and change, and remember what used to be.

The Carll cabbage farm house and barns
The Carll Homestead on Clay Pitts Road
One of the largest farms in East Northport was the Carll homestead. Built by family members of Northport shipbuilder Jesse Carll, the main building was built facing Clay Pitts Road (then called Water Street) in the 1800s. For many years this large two-story home was surrounded by farmland full of cabbage fields.
The last residents of the Carll farm were three unmarried siblings: Richard, Grace, and Mabel Carll. Mabel, the youngest, remembered walking the family cows to graze on the Carll land between Fifth Avenue and Pulaski Road with her brother and sister on the way to school. In the 1940s, Grace and Mabel sold that parcel of land to a builder named Hewitt, who developed it into the Hewitt Square shopping center.

The Carll farmhouse shortly before demolition in 1998

Mabel was very involved in her church community. In 1956 she heard that the Salvation Army was looking for a place to create a mission in the area, and so she donated the Carll homestead and three acres of land for them to build on. The Carll homestead was torn down in the 1990s, but a historic marker can be seen near the spot where it once stood.


Leighton's East Northport Hotel on Laurel Road
The creation of the East Northport train station in 1873 changed life in East Northport from that of a sleepy collection of farms to a bustling agricultural export center. Many shops were built along Laurel and Larkfield Roads so that railroad travelers could find everything they needed as soon as their travels ended. This meant that between the late 1800s and the 1920s East Northport had at least two hotels on this busy thoroughfare.
One of the most lavish was Leighton’s East Northport Hotel, located north of the train tracks on Laurel Road on the east side of the street. It had previously been owned by a man called Dixon, but in 1908 was bought by Roscoe Leighton who employed celebrated East Northport architect Frederick Tiivola to add a second floor and expand and modernize the building to include such luxuries as indoor plumbing. Many locals and visitors held parties at the hotel, including a 1917 party celebrating soldiers returning from Mexico.
The building was eventually torn down to make room for the row of buildings currently occupying the space.

The original 1893 East Northport Larkfield School building
Old Larkfield School on Larkfield Road 
Long-time Northport residents may think of “Larkfield School” as the building on Cheshire Place now housing the East Northport Atria; however, the first Larkfield School stood where the current East Northport Library stands today.
In 1893, the Gildersleeve family of East Northport donated land at the corner of Larkfield and Pulaski Road to build a school for an ever-increasing student population. This building replaced an older school that had been located north of the train tracks on Laurel Road. Originally this was a one-room schoolhouse with multiple grade levels all learning in one space. There was one teacher and almost no support staff, so students took turns doing chores like ringing the school bell and tidying up.

The 1909 dark brick East Northport Larkfield School with its 1924 building addition on the right

The Larkfield School gained additional rooms in 1909, 1924, and 1928, before moving students to the newly built school on Cheshire Place in 1939.
That year, the school board gave the old Larkfield building to the recently formed Library Association of East Northport to become their home. The old building was burned in a fire in 1945, but the collection was saved by Boy Scouts who passed the books from hand to hand out of the blaze.

The home of William Chesebrough- facing the harbor with anchor shaped hedge on the rolling hillside 
The Chesebrough Estate
There were several Chesebrough homes that were situated along the bluffs east of James Street, between what is now Bluff Point Road and Asharoken Avenue. The majestic home of William Chesebrough, which sat on the hillside between Ocean Avenue and Northport Bay, was destroyed by fire in 1962.

Other buildings on the estate like Elizabeth Chesebrough's home (located on the site of the parking lot of Steers Beach) were razed by Steers Sand and Gravel Corp. after the company purchased the land overlooking the bay to expand their sand mining operations.
The land was later developed, creating a new residential neighborhood called “The Pit.”


The Gun Club
Frederick Richter, a German immigrant who established Richter’s Orchard off Pulaski Road, helped establish a Gun Club, located on what is now Gun Club Road, off Old Bridge Road, in the late 1880s. Many of its members and their families came out from New York City to spend weekends and vacation there.
Each shareholder was assigned a room in the large building. While the women and children occupied themselves with activities at the club, the men went out hunting in the woods. The building was torn down in 1945.

The large wooden building pictured is the original First Presbyterian Church- moved to Woodbine Avenue after 1872
The First Presbyterian Church and Businesses along Woodbine Avenue
The First Presbyterian Church was built in 1794 and originally stood on the corner of Makamah Road and 25A. The building was then moved to the area around Waterside Avenue and Main Street in 1829 to follow the population of the Village. In 1872, the church building was sold to Henry Scudder Sammis, who moved it down to the waterfront along Woodbine Avenue at the request of Edward Thompson who needed space for his new publishing company. (Thompson later moved across the street into his new brick building.)
The two-story wooden building served as commercial space for several businesses, including the Post Office at one time. Despite an attempt by the Northport Historical Society to save Northport’s oldest public building, it was razed in 1964.

Businesses along the harbor, across from the Thompson Building

Parking in the Village became an issue with the growing population, so the land along the harbor, which was (and still is) owned by the Town of Huntington and leased to the Village, was converted into parking. All the buildings, some of which were there since the mid-1800s, were torn down along the waterside along Woodbine Avenue. One building, S & G.A. Robbins Furniture Store was moved to Scudder Avenue and is currently part of Snug Harbor Marine Supply.

The Photo Collection

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