Irene Naudus,Matt Paccione, Barbara A. Volpe-Ried
According to the United States Census Bureau, the village has a total area of 1.5 square miles (3.9 km2), of which, 1.5 square miles (3.9 km2) of it is land and none of the area is covered with water.
The village of Island Park is part of the Outer Barrier of Long Island and is bordered on the west by a man-made canal running parallel to Suffolk Road. Its northern, eastern, and southern borders are delineated by the rails of the Long Beach Branch of the Long Island Rail Road. The Island Park LIRR station provides commuters with a direct link to New York City.
Even though it is an Island itself, Island Park is situated in the Long Island section of New York.[clarification needed]
Island Park is a small Island in southern Nassau County located between the mainland and the Island of Long Beach. It has been known as Hog Island, Barnum Island and Jekyll Island. In 1926, Island Park became an incorporated village.
The Island Park community covers a little over one and a half (1.5) square miles.. In the early days, the Rockaway Indians used the island to raise pigs and cattle. They also fished and clammed in the surrounding marshlands and waters. Since so many shellfish were available, these Indians produced wampur from the shells.
During the colonial times, the Europeans came to the area, driving the Indians to the east. The English were the first white settlers in the area. They raised hogs in drier areas, and therefore, the island was named Hog Island. The name was used from 1665 through 1874.
When the American Revolution began, Hog Island's role in history changed abruptly. Patriots on Long Island realized the strategic importance of Hog Island and they posted a guard boat off its coast shortly before the Battle of Brooklyn. However, the battle gave Long Island to the British. After the patriots lost Long Island, they made repeated coastal attacks on the Tories camped there. Often these attacks occurred at Hog Island. A fierce battle occurred on July 11, 1780 when the British warship Galatea pursued a patriot sloop through Jones Inlet and forced it ashore on Hog Island. The crew of 52 went ashore and then defeated and captured most of them as well as their sloop. At least four times during the war, patriots landed at Hog Island seeking to establish a position from which they could attack the Tories. Each time they failed.
After the war ended the farmers of Hempstead and Oceanside brought their hogs to this island to graze. They also had private clam beds in the area. There were no roads connecting any of the surrounding island, transportation was by boat only.
In 1870, the Long Island Railroad laid a single track through Island Park to Long Beach. Trains ran only in the summertime and the New York and Long Beach Railroad, as it was known, crossed Reynolds Channel.
Between 1851 and 1870, Peter C. Barnum gained ownership of the southeastern lands of Long Island which were then part of Queens County. In 1874 his widow, Sara Ann, purchased Hog Island and sold it to the county for $13,000. The property became the site of the county's poor farm (Miele's Camp) and also a smallpox hospital. It was at this time that Hog Island was renamed Barnum Island in her honor.
Local residents have their own folklore of how Island Park developed. The following is one version recorded in the Historical Review of Island Park 50th Anniversary 1926–1976.
Phineas T. Barnum became interested in the locale as a winter home for his circus and he bought the island in 1889. He built a home here for his frail sister, Phoebe, about 1893 before removing his circus to wintering quarters in Bridgeport, Connecticut. Phoebe Barnum lived in the building for a few years before deeding it to Queens County for use as an "Alms House".
This story is pure fiction but, one enjoyed by local residents. P.T. Barnum died in 1891 and never had a sister named Phoebe Ann.
In 1910, Frank Lawson, a developer, and William Austin had a vision: to develop Island Park as the "Venice of the United States". They planned to have canals running throughout the Island. However, World War I occurred and the plans had to be cancelled.
In 1921, the land was purchased by Island Park-Long Beach Corporation and Barnum Island was renamed Island Park. The island was to be a resort center.
The management of this development company was assigned to Edgeworth Smith, a New York realtor. The Island Park-Long Beach Corporation started work by dredging the Island Park Canal and the Island Park Bay to provide soil to fill in the low-lying marshlands. A giant dredge pumped in mud five feet deep. After the mud dried, the island resembled a large, desolate desert.
At the time the company was formed, Island Park was totally undeveloped. The backfilling operation, which took more than a year and at a high cost, left the island a sandy desert. The company planted weeds around the island in an effort to keep the sand in place. During the first year they established an electric light plant and water works in Island Park at the rear of Kildare Road, which supplied the island with electric current from 5 to 11:00 p.m. and water all day. From then on, Island Park was on the map. Fifteen homes were built along Kildare Road near the railroad tracks.
Between 1922 and 1926, a major building boom started at the southern end of the island. Since so many people moved to this section of the island, the railroad station was located from the northern end of the island to its present site.
In 1926, when the village was incorporated, there were fewer than 1,000 property owners. The waters that surrounded the island cooled the air and it became a great summer recreational area. In time, some summer residents decided to become year round residents.
Since there were only a few fishing shacks in Harbor Island, the western part of the island, and on Barnum Island, now the eastern portion of the island, only the center portion of the island was incorporated.
Once the village was incorporated, Charles N. Talbot was the first Mayor and served for 12 years. The office building used by the former builders and developers was converted to a village hall and a post office.
The village continued to develop with some summer bungalows and homes built in the 1920s. Long Beach Road, near the railroad station, developed into a small business area. A volunteer fire department, a small school, and a site for religious observations were erected in the area. However, because Island Park was developed as a recreational area, the beach, boating, and fishing and other water activities were of great importance to people who purchased property. Many people had their main homes in other areas and used their homes in Island Park mainly for vacationing during the summer.
There is a strong sense of community in the village, with majority of residents being multi generational "Island Parkers". Resident drivers know to stop on the villages main street, Long Beach Road, for a usual summer time traffic tie up half a dozen children waiting with their bikes to cross. The community prides themselves on their traditional values and being an all-American town. The village boasts many cultural events throughout the year. The San Gennaro Feast is hosted by Sacred Heart Catholic church along with the Incorporated Village of Island Park. There are rides, games, gambling, and traditional Italian cuisine. This is one of the biggest events for the community. The Island Park Business Chamber holds a street fair with vendors and rides in mid June. To kick off the beach season, there is a 5K race that starts and ends at Masone Beach, on opening day. There are also many summer concerts, and movie nights at the beach as well as the end of year labor day games and fireworks show.
The mayor is Michael G. McGinty (R). The village clerk Constance L. Conroy (R) runs the day-to-day operations of the village. The village board votes on all resolutions in the village.
|U.S. Decennial Census|
As of the census of 2010, there were 2,032 people, 1,603 households, and 1,872 families residing in the village. The population density was 8,865.7 people per square mile (4,937.9/km²). There were 1,715 housing units. The median home value was $721,600. The racial makeup of the village was 94.6% White, 1.9% African American, 0.2% Native American, 0.5% Asian, 0.2% from other races. 1.8% were from two or more races. 2.5% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. The primary ethnicities are mainly Italian and Irish.
There were 1,685 households out of which 33.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.3% were married couples living together, 13.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.8% were non-families. 23.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.69 and the average family size was 3.17.
In the village, the population was spread out with 22.1% aged 19 and under, 6.1% from 20 to 24, 33.6% from 25 to 44, 27.8% from 45 to 64, and 13.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40.8 years. Female population was 51.1% and male population was 49.9%.
The median income for a household in the village was $162,500, and the median income for a family was $192,765. Males had a median income of $157,018versus $177,764 for the female population per capita income. The per capita for the village was $28,149. 8.6% of the population and 0.1% of families were below the poverty line. 0.01% of those people were under the age of 18 and 11.1% were 65 and older.
The Island Park Union Free School District provides education to all children in the Village of Island Park. Grades K-4 attend the Francis X. Hegarty Elementary School, and grades 5-8 attend Lincoln Orens Middle School, For students in grades 9–12 they have the choice of attending either Long Beach High School or West Hempstead High School. The district also has a comprehensive Pre-K Program. Tara Byrne is the School Board president and Rose Bovino is the superintendent of schools. Also many students attend private Catholic schools such as, Long Beach Catholic Regional School, Chaminade High School, Kellenberg Memorial High School, St. Agnes School, among the most popular.
The Public Works team (DPW) is responsible for all infrastructure maintenance in the village. The Superintendent is in charge of the departments employees. The Village Garage is located on 580 Long Beach Road, just inside village lines, there is also an auxiliary garage located at Masone Beach. The DPW maintains streets included but not limited to, sweeping, line striping, pothole and road repairs, signage, streetlights, some traffic signals, sidewalk repairs, tree removal/maintenance, storm water management, etc. The village DPW also maintains all village parks, vehicles and buildings belonging to the village.Their overall goal is to have a safe, good looking village for all. The village DPW also collects Residential and Commercial garbage.
The village Code Enforcement is the chief law enforcement agency in the village. The Job of this department is to enforce all village, county, state and federal laws.
Their job is to issue all building permits and to inspect all homes in the village to make sure they are up to code. The Department staff is under the direction of John Rocco the buildings Superintendent as well as village clerk Constance L. Conroy.
This department runs all recreation programs in the village as well as oversee parks in concert with the Public Works Department.
The Island Park Fire Department has been proudly providing FIRE/EMS protection to the community since 1924. Edward Madden Serves as Chief.
Constance L. Conroy currently serves as the village clerk of the Incorporated Village of Island Park. The village hall located at 127 Long Beach Road is home to the village hall which houses the Clerk's office, police justice court, village board of trustees, building department and code enforcement department. The clerk's office staff includes the deputy village clerk, police justice court clerk, village comptroller, and their respective secretaries.
The village boasts some of the best bays, swimming, water fun and of course parks on all of Long Island. The Department of Beach and Recreation along with the Department of Public Works, works very hard to make sure all village parks are in tip top shape at all times.
Considered the "crown jewel" of the village parks, it is located on picturesque Island Park Harbor. The beach is named after Micheal Masone the former Superintendent of the Department of Public Works, who took great pride in his community and its residents and went to extreme measures to keep it beautiful. The beach is home to a playground dedicated to a victim of the Sandy Hook shootings. There is also a splash park the village installed in 2014, which is widely popular with children and teens as well as the adults. The basketball and handball courts are also popular with the youngsters. As well as a splash park there is also a large picnic area with barbecues. For larger groups there is a gazebo pavilion that can be reserved for the day. The beach is an excellent spot for swimming. There is a pier and two floats to swim to. There is also an expert lifeguard staff on duty from June 28 until September 8 and after that weekends until the second weekend in October. The beach also hosts concerts, movie nights, swimming lessons, arts and crafts, and basketball clinics.
Beach gates are open from 9am-9pm with lifeguards present from 10am-6pm, and beach tags required from 9am-9pm. The season runs from the end of June until early September. The beach is also open on weekends until November. Beach tags are on sale at the Village Hall or the Beach Office.
More commonly known as Landgraf Park, a new playground for kids in the village. The park was recently renovated after Hurricane Sandy. The park has many age appropriate play equipment including a swing set. The park is open 9 am – 9 pm year round weather permitting.
A brand new state of the art playground, basketball court, running track, baseball fields and multipurpose fields. Open school days 4pm until 9pm all other days 9am-9pm weather permitting.