On Main Street

Footnotes to Long Island History


Main Street

Thomas R. Bayles



UPTON SERIES – Thomas R. Bayles, who writes “Footnotes to Long Island History” for The Long Island Advance, has heard from a reader regarding his current series on the construction of Camp Upton. He was called by Mrs. James Scott, 86, and still active, who said she well remembered that twentieth of June in 1917, when the first engineers came to look over the site for Camp Upton.

            She and her neighbor down the street had to prepare dinner for the 18 men, and in those days there was no fresh meat available in Yaphank, so she had to kill chickens they had for the meat course. This she had never done before, but getting a sharp axe, she cut their heads off and dressed them and saved the day for a fine dinner for the engineers.

            She said she used to chaperone the girls who went from Yaphank to the dances at the camp and to other activities.

            “So these stories bring back memories from people who were active in those colorful years when Yaphank was an important suburb of Camp Upton,” Mr. Bayles said.    

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