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The Way We Were: Visit Hamptons & North Fork Historical Societies This Summer

These 11 East End historical societies will take you back in time.

The summer months mean extended hours and exciting events for many of the East End’s 11 historical societies. If you have a love of the past and its relationship to our present and future, these historical societies, and their museums, can take your summer back in time.

Oysterponds Historical Society
1555 Village Lane, Orient
631-323-2480, oysterpondshistoricalsociety.org

This summer, the Oysterponds Historical Society will hold a Summer Benefit and Art Action August 3 from 5–8 p.m. The gala will be held outdoors on the historical society grounds and features donated works by artists from Orient, East Marion and other spots around the North Fork.

Shelter Island Historical Society
16 South Ferry Road, Shelter Island
631-749-0025, shelterislandhistorical.org

Each Saturday from May through September, the Shelter Island Historical Society hosts a farmers market. When not at the market, visit them to learn about this secluded island’s unique past.

Downs Carriage House, Southold Historical Society
Downs Carriage House, Southold Historical Society

Southold Historical Society
54325 Main Road, Southold 
631-765-5500, southoldhistoricalsociety.org

Check out the Treasure Exchange, a consignment and antique shop operates out of the Southold Historical Society’s Prince Building at the Maple Lane Museum Complex.

Mattituck-Laurel Historical Society
18200 Main Road, Mattituck
631-298-5248, mlhistoricalsociety.org

The New Egypt School on site at the Mattituck-Laurel Historical Society is named as such because its location is so far from the population center of Mattituck that people began referring to that part of town as “Egypt.”

Visitors explore the Lower Level of the Quogue Historical Society Pond House
Visitors explore the Lower Level of the Quogue Historical Society Pond House

Quogue Historical Society
114 Jessup Avenue, Quogue
631-996-2404, quoguehistory.org

The one-room schoolhouse on display by the Quogue Historical Society has been moved three times in its 191-year history and is said to be the oldest surviving in Suffolk County.

East Quogue Historical Society
580 Montauk Highway, East Quogue
631-653-5517, eastquoguehistorical.org

Those who wish to engage with the East Quogue Historical Society need not leave their homes, as they’ve launched their first online exhibit on life in East Quogue in the 1920s and 1930s.

Rogers Mansion in Southampton
Rogers Mansion in Southampton, Photo: Oliver Peterson

Southampton History Museum
Rogers Mansion, 17 Meeting House Lane, Southampton
631-283-2494, southamptonhistory.org

Headquartered in the old Rogers Mansion, the Southampton History Museum is 120 years old this year. One of their most fun activities is their ghost hunting program, but they’re also home to dozens of wonderful educational events at multiple locations, including the 1680 Halsey House. Join their annual Insider’s View house tour to get a look at some truly stunning Southampton homes and properties.

East Hampton Historical Society brought a scale model of The Clinton Academy, the society headquarters constructed in 1784, to float up Main Street for the Santa Parade.
East Hampton Historical Society’s scale model of The Clinton Academy, their headquarters constructed in 1784.

East Hampton Historical Society
101 Main Street, East Hampton
631-324-6850, easthamptonhistory.org

The East Hampton Historical Society is made up of seven museums, workshops and buildings, some of which are available to rent for weddings and other events. Enjoy Mulford Farm, the Clinton Academy, the Thomas Moran House, East Hampton Town Marine Museum, Osborn-Jackson House and more.

The Bridgehampton Museum's William Corwith House
The Bridgehampton Museum’s William Corwith House

The Bridgehampton Museum
2368 Montauk Highway
631-537-1088, bhmuseum.org

Each year, the museum hosts the Bridgehampton Road Rally,  a combination vintage car show, parade and road race, like those of historic Bridgehampton.

Sag Harbor Historical Society
174 Main Street, Sag Harbor
631-725-5092, sagharborhistorical.org

Located in the historic Annie Cooper Boyd House, the Sag Harbor Historical Society has an extensive library of books, family histories, house histories, deeds and ledgers.

Montauk Point Lighthouse, the oldest lighthouse in New York State. Completed on November 5, 1796. The Montauk Point Lighthouse became a National Historic Landmark in 2012.
Photo: Sylvana Rega/123RF

Montauk Historical Society
Montauk Lighthouse: 2000 Montauk Highway, Montauk
Second House Museum and Montauk Indian Museum: 12–24 2nd House Road, Montauk

The Montauk Historical Society manages three different structures, including the famous Montauk Point Lighthouse, which flashes every five seconds and can be seen a distance of 19 nautical miles.

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