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Photo of the Week


"How shall we know it is us without our past?"
- John Steinbeck

by Wendy Polhemus-Annibell, Head Librarian

Polish Town Fair Map, "Visit a European Village Without Leaving the U.S.A.," Riverhead, 1980.  (From the Collection of the Suffolk County Historical Society Library Archives. Image © copyright Suffolk County Historical Society. All rights reserved.)

With Riverhead's annual Polish Town Fair under way this weekend, we found a map of the area in a 1980 Polish Town Fair Supplement in our library collection. The publication's front cover reads: WITAMY Means Welcome to Polish Town, USA!

How it all started: Back in 1975, a small group of Riverhead citizens of Polish descent met to discuss plans for the national bicentennial celebration, and came upon the idea of a street fair to be held in the section of Riverhead known as Polish Town, home to generations of immigrants from Poland beginning in the late nineteenth century. The idea was to create a street fair that gave visitors the experience of a Polish village--through music, dance, and, of course, traditional foods. The fair was also intended as a tribute to the original Polish immigrants, men and women who came to Riverhead to work on farms, build a beautiful church, and grow a community. St. Isidore's Church, built in 1906, is the oldest Polish Catholic church on Long island.

The Suffolk County Historical Society's Research Library
is seeking to grow its genealogy resources on Polish immigrants
to the Riverhead area and all of Suffolk County.
If you can help, please contact our library staff at
631-727-2881 x103 or librarian@schs-museum.org


The Suffolk County Historical Society’s PHOTO OF THE WEEK Series is created by head research librarian Wendy Polhemus-Annibell using historic primary source materials from our local history library’s extensive archives. To subscribe, visit our website or send an email request to Wendy at librarian@schs-museum.org 

Interested in seeing more historical documents from the Collection of the Suffolk County Historical Society? Spend an afternoon at our Local History Research Library perusing our extensive collections. We're open Weds. - Sat., 12:30 - 4:30 PM.

To view our Photo of the Week archives, visit our website at www.SuffolkCountyHistoricalSociety.org.

Last chance to register for our upcoming Book & Bottle lecture on the Recovery of the Bald Eagle on Long Island and Beyond with William Konstant. Thursday, August 24, 6:00 PM.

Call 631-727-2881 x100 to reserve.

If you've been enjoying our Photo of the Week, please consider becoming a member of SCHS.

From the Civil War to civil rights, revolutions to restorations, spies to suffragists, boatbuilders to bootleggers, and whalers to wineries, Long Island's history comes alive at the Suffolk County Historical Society!

The Suffolk County Historical Society, founded in 1886, collects and preserves the rich history of Suffolk County and beyond. We offer a history museum, art galleries, a research library and archives, and a multitude of exhibits, programs, and educational lectures and workshops year-round. Our unique collections reflect more than three centuries of Long Island history. Click here to learn about Member Benefits!


Copyright © 2017 Suffolk County Historical Society. All rights reserved. No part of this electronic document may be reproduced in any form without the written permission of the Suffolk County Historical Society.