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06/22/17 6:00am
06/22/2017 6:00 AM

The Old House in Cutchogue has been promoted for more than a decade as the oldest English-style house in New York State, but scientific research may soon shave nearly 50 years off its age, local historians said.

The building, said to have been constructed in 1649, might actually have been built in 1698, according to Zach Studenroth, director of the Cutchogue-New Suffolk Historical Council. He said the new date first came to light in 2006 during research conducted by the Oxford Dendrochronology Laboratory in Oxford, England, and that information is currently being verified.

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04/27/15 8:00am
04/27/2015 8:00 AM
George Cork Maul, a Southold Town 375th Anniversary Committee member, in front of a mile markers along Main Road in Peconic. (Credit: Jen Nuzzo)

George Cork Maul, a Southold Town 375th Anniversary Committee member, in front of a mile markers along Main Road in Peconic. (Credit: Jen Nuzzo)

There were a lot of things Benjamin Franklin accomplished in his life.

The Founding Father invented bifocal lenses and the lightning rod, was a successful newspaper printer, served as America’s diplomat to Paris during the Revolutionary War and signed both the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution.

But one thing he did not do, local historians now say, was place mile markers along Southold Town’s Main Road.  (more…)

12/16/14 5:54pm
12/16/2014 5:54 PM
(Credit: Katharine Schroeder)

Hudson Kaufer, 11, of Cutchogue lights a menorah Tuesday, the first night of Hanukkah. (Credit: Katharine Schroeder)

North Fork Reform Synagogue and Cutchogue New Suffolk Historical Council commemorated the start of Hanukkah Tuesday afternoon with a menorah lighting celebration at Cutchogue Village Green.  (more…)

10/31/14 10:00am
10/31/2014 10:00 AM
Jason Tang, left, with David Markel of Southold the morning after they met during a nor'easter last week. (Credit: Joe Werkmeister)

Jason Tang, left, with David Markel of Southold the morning after they met during a nor’easter last week. (Credit: Joe Werkmeister)

In this week’s edition of our North Fork in the News podcast, we look at one story that spans the globe and another close to home.  (more…)

10/21/12 11:00am
10/21/2012 11:00 AM

KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTO | Howard Kroplick (driving) and Theodore Reina in a 1909 Alco Black Beast. This car competed in the first-ever Indie 500 in 1911.

The Cutchogue-New Suffolk Historical Council held its Back in Time Before ’49 antique car and fashion show on the Village Green in Cutchogue on Saturday.

Dozens of pre-1949 vehicles were on display alongside antique bicycles and children’s pedal cars. Volunteers and visitors in period costumes roamed the Village Green while a barbershop quartet performed and several brave fellows gave demonstrations on how to ride high wheeler bicycles.

The Old House, Wickham Farm House, and other historic buildings were open for free tours. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Historical Council.

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12/04/11 7:16am
12/04/2011 7:16 AM

KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTO | Light-up on the Cutchogue Village Green Saturday evening.

The Cutchogue-New Suffolk Historical Council held its annual Christmas tree lighting on the Village Green Saturday night.

As the switch was turned on to light the magnificent tree that graces the Green, carolers sang traditional Christmas songs.

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03/17/11 4:10pm
03/17/2011 4:10 PM


TIM KELLY PHOTO | Cutchogue-New Suffolk Historical Council volunteer Richard Jordan sifts through soil at Cutchogue Village Green Tuesday in search of artifacts as work commenced on a new garage for antique vehicles.


When is a garage project more than just a garage project? When it’s an architectural dig.

On the surface, the Cutchogue-New Suffolk Historical Council’s addition of a two-car garage on the Village Green seems simple enough. But when a crew started excavating Tuesday, the focus shifted to what lies below.

In keeping with the town’s dictate, the council brought in an archaeologist — in this case, JoAnne McLean of Flanders — to sift through the soil for any Native American artifacts or remains that might be unearthed. None were found, which came as no surprise given that the land was disturbed for the construction of several homes and businesses in the first half of the 20th century, according to council trustee Mike Malkush.

Tuesday’s digging uncovered a variety of artifacts including bottles, broken plates, metal objects such as the head of pickax and a spoked car wheel.

The soil also surrendered five horseshoes, believed to have originated at a blacksmith shop that stood on the green during the 1920s and ’30s. Edward Grathwohl, grandfather of council member and local historian Jim Grathwohl, was the village smithy back then.

“The doors of the smithy opened to the south and kids on their way to and from school would stop and he’d show them what he was working on,” Mr. Grathwohl said.

Edward Grathwohl was only 58 when he died in the early 1940s.

A tinsmith’s building also once operated on the property, which the historical council acquired in 1960. It was moved to a nearby Main Road parcel in the early 1930s.

At one time several houses hugged the northern side along Main Road, including the home of a Turkish merchant who sold goods out of his house and later from a horse and buggy and a pickup truck. The property was unused and overgrown when the society acquired it.

Centuries earlier the Corchaug Indians called the property “the broad field” and “grew corn and beans there,” Mr. Grathwohl continued.

“Early historians said the Corchaugs had their council fires there,” he said. “That was pretty much their headquarters.”
The mid-19th century schoolhouse, which is just west of the garage site, once stood across the street on the north side of Main Road. It was sold in 1903 and moved to the other side of Cutchogue to become farm laborers’ housing. The council brought it to the green shortly after clearing the land in 1960, said Mr. Grathwohl.

The artifacts found this week were probably left as trash, he added.

“Back then people just threw stuff out the back door in their own private little dumps,” Mr. Grathwohl said.
Even so, Ms. McLean will catalogue and analyze the material, some of which will be displayed inside the new building as part of an exhibit on the early 20th century, said Mr. Malkush.

Ms. McLean will return in upcoming weeks when the digging starts for the building’s drainage system.
“Who knows who might have thrown something out there?” said Mr. Malkush.

The council plans to host a ribbon-cutting for the new garage in mid-May. When it’s complete, it will house a 1926 Model A truck donated by Parker Wickham of Mattituck.

Eventually, the second bay will hold a 1931 Willys touring car once owned by Cutchogue’s own Douglas Moore, a Pulitzer Prize-winning composer. Each summer the council hosts a concert on the green in honor of Mr. Moore.

Restoring the Willys could take several years, according to Mr. Malkush. In the interim, vintage vehicles owned by local collectors will be part of a rotating display.

“It’s surprising how many people out here have antique cars,” he said. “A lot of people are taking an interest in what we’re doing and it’s exposing the buildings and the green to many more people in the community.”

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