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About
Douglaston/Little Neck

Douglaston & Little Neck: Then & Now

Join neighborhood historian Michael Kurucz for a photo “tour” of historic Douglaston and Little Neck, along with views of the same spots as they exist today. Explore a wonderful collection of photos, postcards, ephemera and maps, and bring your own family’s stories and photos to share. The Queens Memory team will be on hand to scan and save ...

May 2 @ 6:00 PM, May 4 @ 11:00 AM

Comics Drawing Session and Author Talk with Kristen Gudsnuk

Come and join us for a fun workshop with the comics writer and illustrator Kristen Gudsnuk, creator of the series Henchgirl and Making Friends. Join Kristen and play an imagination-enhancing doodle game, and then brainstorm suggestions for character and story and make a three-panel comic strip!
Ms. Gudsnuk will also talk about her ...

May 17 @ 3:30 PM

Apr
20
11:00AM

--to--

12:00PM

ShapeUp NYC: Low-Impact Dance Cardio for Adults

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

ShapeUp NYC instructor Lucette leads this low-impact fitness class that uses fun music and high energy movement to help sculpt and stretch your body. Beginners and higher levels are welcomed. Wear comfortable clothing, and bring a towel and water bottle. Space is limited. Participation is on a first-come, first-served basis.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


Apr
20
2:00PM

--to--

4:00PM

Family Fun Time (Playroom)

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Please join us for hours of fun and games for the entire family. Come and play board games, Legos, puzzles, and much more. Space is limited; registration is not required.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


Apr
22
3:00PM

--to--

5:00PM

Douglaston Discovery Zone

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Please join us for fun after-school activities. Activities include problem solving, puzzles, coloring, games, and more for children in elementary and middle school.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


More...
Apr
22
3:00PM

--to--

4:00PM

Knitting and Crocheting Club

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Have fun while learning to knit your very own creations! Please bring your own yarn and needles.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


Apr
23
2:00PM

--to--

5:00PM

Mail-A-Book Informational Table

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Mail-A-Book will be visiting our Douglaston branch to answer any questions in the community and offer information on the services they offer for senior citizens and the homebound.


Apr
24
10:30AM

--to--

11:00AM

Toddler Time!

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Come and join us for toddler time! Here, children will play with others their age while also doing educational activities! This is designed for children that are 18 months to 5 years old.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


Apr
24
11:00AM

--to--

11:30AM

Toddler Craft

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Come and join us for toddler arts and crafts! This program is designed for children that are 18 months to 5 years old.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


Apr
24
3:00PM

--to--

5:00PM

French Conversation Circle

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Improve your French with the French Conversation Circle.

Rejoinds Robert et les autres pour un peu de conversation français à la bibliothèque Douglaston/Little Neck. Un niveau intermédiaire à locuteur natif préferé mais tous sont les bienvenus. Nous parlerons français seulement.

Join Robert and others for a little French conversation at the Douglaston/Little Neck library. An intermediate to native speaker level is preferred but all are welcome. We will speak French only.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


Apr
25
3:00PM

--to--

4:00PM

Kids' Cards

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Children and caregivers are welcome to join in a friendly card game.


Apr
25
4:00PM

--to--

5:00PM

Boys' Book Club

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Are you interested in reading and discussing books? Come and join our Boys' Book Club! All are welcome.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


Apr
26
10:30AM

--to--

11:15AM

Storytime and Me

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Children between the ages of 8 months to 18 months and their caregivers are welcome to enjoy a storytime and activity time together.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


Apr
26
3:00PM

--to--

5:00PM

Movie Time: "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone"

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Please join us for an afternoon of fun and adventure featuring “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone” (2001, PG). All are welcome; space is limited.


Apr
26
4:45PM

--to--

5:45PM

Girls' Junior Book Club

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

This is a book club for girls reading at second to third grade level! Come join in the book discussion and encourage healthy reading habits. Please pick-up and read the month's selection for the club meeting.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


Apr
30
3:00PM

--to--

4:30PM

After-School Fun and Activities

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Join us as we do fun activities after school!

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


May
1
10:00AM

--to--

6:00PM

Ladies From Your Past: A Traveling Exhibit on the Contributions of Outstanding Women

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Please join us and view this amazing traveling exhibit "Ladies from Your Past" on the contributions of outstanding women in today's world. It is on display to educate, inspire, and motivate women, men, and children.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


May
1
2:30PM

--to--

5:00PM

Douglaston Discovery Zone

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Please join us for fun after-school activities. Activities include problem solving, puzzles, coloring, games, and more for children in elementary and middle school.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


May
2
1:00PM

--to--

2:00PM

Mandarin Chinese Conversation Class

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Do you want to learn Mandarin Chinese? Please join our Mandarin Chinese conversation class for beginners. This class introduces the basic elements of the Chinese language. Space is limited; registration is required.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


May
2
6:00PM

--to--

7:30PM

Douglaston & Little Neck: Then & Now

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Join neighborhood historian Michael Kurucz for a photo “tour” of historic Douglaston and Little Neck, along with views of the same spots as they exist today. Explore a wonderful collection of photos, postcards, ephemera and maps, and bring your own family’s stories and photos to share. The Queens Memory team will be on hand to scan and save them to a free flash drive that you can take home. Light refreshments provided by the Friends of the Douglaston / Little Neck Community Library.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


May
3
10:30AM

--to--

11:30AM

Storytime and Me

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Children between the ages of 8 months to 18 months and their caregivers are welcome to enjoy a storytime and activity time together.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


May
6
1:00PM

--to--

3:00PM

Monday Movie Matinee

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Join us and watch the movie "At Eternity's Gate" (2018, PG-13). Famed but tormented artist Vincent van Gogh spends his final years in Arles, France, painting masterworks of the natural world that surrounds him.


May
7
10:30AM

--to--

11:30AM

Basic Computer Class for Adults

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Topics include basic introduction to the computer, introduction to Microsoft office, and navigating the Internet. Registration is required.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


May
7
3:00PM

--to--

4:00PM

DIY Jewelry Beading

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Children ages 8-15 are welcome to do some beading! Make a creation with us!


May
8
1:00PM

--to--

2:30PM

Louise's Book Club

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

This is a book club for book discussion and reading inspiration. Everyone is welcome!

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


May
9
3:00PM

--to--

3:45PM

Create a Bracelet

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Our adult craft this week will be to design beautiful bracelets. Make a creation with us!


May
10
3:00PM

--to--

5:15PM

Movie Time

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Join us for an afternoon of fun and adventure featuring “Black Panther” (2018, PG-13).


May
10
3:30PM

--to--

4:30PM

Music and Dance from China performed by Ba Ban Chinese Music Society of NY

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

In a performance by world-class Chinese musicians and dancers from the Ba Ban Chinese
Music Society of New York, the audience will gain knowledge of the relationship between
Chinese music and folk dance, history, culture, making instruments from materials and dance
props, basic techniques, and the Eastern thought behind them.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


May
11
12:00PM

--to--

3:00PM

Douglaston Book and Plant Sale

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Friends of Douglaston/Littleneck Presents:
Spring Book and Plant Sale
All sales proceeds will go to funding library programs and materials for all ages.


May
14
3:00PM

--to--

4:00PM

Tissue Paper Flower

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Join us in doing the easy and fun crafts with tissue paper. This program is for children of all ages


May
17
3:30PM

--to--

5:15PM

Comics Drawing Session and Author Talk with Kristen Gudsnuk

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Come and join us for a fun workshop with the comics writer and illustrator Kristen Gudsnuk, creator of the series Henchgirl and Making Friends. Join Kristen and play an imagination-enhancing doodle game, and then brainstorm suggestions for character and story and make a three-panel comic strip!
Ms. Gudsnuk will also talk about her books and answer questions about the way she creates her characters. Bring your drawing pads and pencils. Books will be available for sale and signing.


May
21
3:00PM

--to--

4:00PM

Memorial Day Crafts

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Come and join us to make an after-school craft for your Memorial Day. All ages are welcome.


May
28
3:00PM

--to--

4:00PM

Dreamcatcher

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Join us in making easy and fun crafts after school! This program is for children of all ages.


Jun
3
1:00PM

--to--

3:15PM

Monday Movie Matinee

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Join us and watch the movie "A Star Is Born" (2018, R), an American musical romantic drama produced and directed by Bradley Cooper (in his directorial debut), starring Bradley Cooper, Lady Gaga, and Dave Chappelle. It marks the third remake of the original 1937 film.


Jun
4
3:00PM

--to--

4:00PM

Origami Ladybug

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Come join our arts and crafts event for children of all ages.


Jun
5
4:30PM

--to--

5:30PM

Joys of Beekeeping: Lecture and Honey Tasting Demonstration

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Ruth Harrigan presents the joys of beekeeping and importance of apians in the global environment.


Jun
11
3:00PM

--to--

4:00PM

Crafts for Father's Day

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Come make crafts for Father's Day. All ages are welcome.


Jun
14
3:00PM

--to--

6:00PM

Movie Time

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Join us for an afternoon of fun and adventure featuring “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets” (2002, PG).


Jun
14
3:30PM

--to--

4:15PM

Bring Your Story: Create Your Family Flag

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Families can celebrate Immigrant Heritage Month on Flag Day by creating their own family flags.


Jun
18
3:30PM

--to--

4:30PM

Space! The Cosmos For Kids

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Space! The Cosmos For Kids is a techno-space-dance-party for kids. Each song includes dancing, music technology and information about our solar system to a thumping beat. This program is free. Space is limited. Pre-registration is required. For children ages 6 to 12.


Jun
20
5:00PM

--to--

6:15PM

Bring Your Story: An Afternoon of Japanese Culture

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Traditional Okinawan dancer, singer, and musician Junko Fisher performs choreographed dance pieces using Okinawan and Japanese dance forms to tell the story of historical places or events in Japanese culture.


Jun
25
3:00PM

--to--

4:00PM

Yarn Bookmark

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Come join our arts and crafts event for children of all ages to make DIY yarn bookmarks.


Jun
27
5:30PM

--to--

7:00PM

Ukulele for Kids

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Registration for is required for this six-class session. Please contact the branch directly to register.
Children 10 to 15 years old can join in these beginner's ukulele lessons. Ukuleles will be provided and registration will be first-come, first-served.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


Jul
2
2:30PM

--to--

3:30PM

Summer Reading K-2: Fourth of July Crafts

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Come and join us to make easy crafts for celebrating your Fourth of July.


Jul
5
2:30PM

--to--

3:30PM

Summer Reading: Star Constellations

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Children in 3rd to 5th grade can celebrate summer reading by discussing books and participating in the space-related constellation project.


Jul
6
10:30AM

--to--

11:15AM

Early Childhood Summer Reading

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Children 0 to 5 years old can celebrate summer reading with space-themed crafts, activities, and stories.

Additional Program Dates/Locations
This is a recurring program. If registration is required, you must register individually.

Additional Dates


Jul
9
2:30PM

--to--

3:30PM

Summer Reading K-2: Origami Whale

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Come join this crafts event for children of all ages.


Jul
11
2:30PM

--to--

3:30PM

Teens' Summer Reading: Alien Invasion

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Teens can celebrate summer reading by discussing books and working with fun Space Invasion craft kits.


Jul
16
2:30PM

--to--

3:30PM

Summer Reading K-2: Spaceship Crafts

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Children are welcome to make the spaceship craft.


Jul
19
2:30PM

--to--

3:30PM

Summer Reading: Force Awakens

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Children in 3rd to 5th grade can celebrate summer reading by discussing books and participating in the space-related light saber project.


Jul
23
2:30PM

--to--

3:30PM

Summer Reading K-2: Foxy Pasta Necklace

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

All children are invited to join us for the craft.


Jul
25
2:30PM

--to--

3:30PM

Teens' Summer Reading: Paper Circuits

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Teens can celebrate summer reading by discussing books and participating in a paper circuit STEM program.


Jul
26
2:30PM

--to--

3:30PM

Summer Reading: Space Diorama

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Children in 3rd to 5th grade can celebrate summer reading by discussing books and participating in the space-related diorama craft. You can bring your own shoe box or small cardboard box to work with.


Jul
30
2:30PM

--to--

3:30PM

Summer Reading K-2: Make a Flying Rocket!

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Come join this craft event for children of all ages.


Aug
8
2:30PM

--to--

3:30PM

Teens' Summer Reading: STEM Kit

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Teens can celebrate summer reading by discussing books and participating in a space-themed STEM program.


Aug
9
2:30PM

--to--

3:30PM

Summer Reading: Space Painting

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Children in 3rd to 5th grade can celebrate summer reading by discussing books and creating space- themed small canvas paintings.


Aug
10
10:30AM

--to--

11:30AM

End of Summer Reading Party: Early Childhood

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Children 0 to 5 years old can celebrate the end of our summer reading program with a space-themed party.


Aug
16
2:30PM

--to--

3:30PM

End of Summer Reading Space Party: 3rd - 5th Grade

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

Children in 3rd to 5th grade can celebrate the end of our summer reading program and all of the exciting books they have read with a party!


Oct
21
1:00PM

--to--

2:00PM

A Caregiver's Guide to Alzheimer's/Dementia

Location: Douglaston/Little Neck
Registration: Not required

This program will help you better understand the basics of Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia, including the warning signs, stages, symptoms, and behaviors of the person for whom you are caring. All are welcome.


Free computer access is available at all the libraries.

The Douglaston/Little Neck Community Library has:

  • 14 public computers
  • Free Internet access
  • Microsoft Office software
  • Limited free printing

 

Queens Library Public Internet Use Policy.

TBD

TBD

TBD

TBD

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International Language Collections at the Douglaston/Little Neck Community Library include:

  • Chinese
  • Korean

 

Special Interest/Noteworthy Collections at the Douglaston/Little Neck Community Library include:

  • Classics
  • Cooking
  • Large Print
  • Audio Books

 


Child Care / Preschools
Community Board
Community Organizations & Services
Fire Department
Local Hospitals
Local Newspapers
Parks and Playgrounds
Police Department
Post Office
Private / Parochial Schools
Public Elementary Schools
Public Intermediate / Junior High Schools
Senior Centers
Elected Officials
History
Special Services

Child Care / Preschools
ABC Early Learning Center
54-25 Little Neck Parkaway
Little Neck NY , 11362
phone: (718) 225-8044
Community Church of Douglaston Universal Pre-Kindergarten
39-50 Douglaston Parkaway
Douglaston NY , 11363
phone: (718) 229-2169
Community Church of Little Neck Universal Pre-Kindergarten
46-16 Little Neck Parkaway
Little Neck NY , 11362
phone: (718) 229-9389
fax: (718) 357-2860

Community Board
Community Board District #11
46-21 Little Neck Parkway
Little Neck NY , 11362
phone: (718) 225-1054
fax: (718) 225-4514
  

Community Organizations & Services
Little Neck Pines Civic Association, Inc.
P.O. Box 331
Little Neck NY , 11363
phone: (917) 373-0921
Westmoreland Association, Inc.
251-31 42nd Avenue
Little Neck NY , 11363
 

Fire Department
Engine 306
40-18 214 Place
Queens NY , 11361
Engine 326 Battalion 53
64-04 Springfield Blvd.
Bayside NY , 11364
 

Local Hospitals
Long Island Jewish Hospital
270-05 76th Avenue
New Hyde Park NY , 11040
phone: 718 or 516 470-7000
North Shore University Hospital (NSUH) / Manhasset
300 Community Drive
Manhasset NY , 11030
phone: (516) 562-0100
 

Local Newspapers
Little Neck Ledger
  

Parks and Playgrounds
Alley Pond Environmental Center
228-06 Northern Boulevard
Douglaston NY , 11363
phone: (718) 229-4000
Louis Pasteur Park
248 Street and 51st Avenue
Little Neck NY , 11632
Sy Seplowe Playground (PS 94)
42 to 43 Avenues and Little Neck Parkway
Little Neck NY , 11362
Udalls Cove Park
Northern Boulevard and 244-247 Streets, Douglas Rd
Little Neck NY , 11362
  

Police Department
NYPD 11th Precinct
45-06 215th Street
Bayside NY , 11361
phone: (718) 279-5200
  

Post Office
Horace Harding Post Office
56-01 Marathon Parkaway
Little Neck NY , 11362
phone: (718) 224-4492
Little Neck Post Office
250-10 Northern Boulevard
Little Neck NY , 11362
phone: (718) 229-8573
 

Private / Parochial Schools
Divine Wisdom Catholic Academy
45-11 245th Street
Douglaston NY , 11363
phone: (718) 631-3153
  

Public Elementary Schools
PS 94 David Porter School
41-77 Little Neck Parkway
Little Neck NY , 11363
phone: (718) 423-8491
fax: (718) 423-8531
PS 98 Douglaston School
40-20 235 Street
Douglaston NY , 11363
phone: (718) 423-8535
fax: (718) 423-8550
PS 221 North Hills School
57-40 Marathon Parkway
Little Neck NY , 11362
phone: (718) 423-8825
fax: (718) 423-8841

Public Intermediate / Junior High Schools
MS 67 Louis Pasteur Middle School (Grades 6-9)
51-60 Marathon Parkway
Little Neck NY , 11362
phone: (718) 423-8138
fax: (718) 423-8281
Benjamin N. Cardozo High School (Grades 9-12)
57-00 223rd Street
Bayside NY , 11364
phone: (718) 279-6500
 

Senior Centers
Samuel Field Y
58-20 Little Neck Parkaway
Little Neck NY , 11362
phone: (718) 225-6750 ext. 232
  

Elected Officials
NYC Council
Hon. Paul Vallone
District19@council.nyc.gov
District Office Address 42-40 Bell Boulevard, Suite 507
Bayside NY, 11361
phone: (718) 619-8611
fax: (718) 631-4100
Manhattan Office Address 250 Broadway, Suite 1792
New York NY, 10007
phone: 212-788-7250
fax: 212-788-1860
NYS Assembly
Hon. Edward C. Braunstein
BraunsteinE@nyassembly.gov
District Office 213-33 39th Avenue, Suite 238
Bayside NY, 11361
phone: (718) 357-3588
fax: (718) 357-5947
Albany Office LOB, Room 557
Albany NY , 12248
phone: (518) 455-5425
fax: (518) 455-4648
Boro President
Hon. Melinda Katz
Info@queensbp.org
  
Mayor
Hon. Bill de Blasio
  
US Congress
Hon. Thomas Souzzi
District Office 250-02 Northern Boulevard
Little Neck NY, 11362
phone: (718) 631-0400
Legislative Office 226 Cannon HOB
DC Washington , 20515
phone: (202) 225-3335
fax: (202) 225-4669
NYS Senate
Hon. John Liu
liu@nysenate.gov
District Office38-50 Bell Boulevard, Suite C
Bayside NY, 11361
phone: 718-357-3094
fax: 718-357-3491
 

History

In colonial times, the Little Neck area was named for the geographical feature of the small peninsula extending into Little Neck Bay. A larger peninsula just to the east was called Great Neck. In the early 1900’s developers wanted residents to sign a petition to change its name to Westmoreland, but the majority declined. The original area of Little Neck has been reduced twice: once in 1872 to create Douglaston and again in 1928 when Nassau County changed the name on its side of its boundary with Queens County to Great Neck.

In 1872, Douglaston was named for William P. Douglas, who inherited the estate on the peninsula for which Little Neck was named from his father, George Douglas. When the Flushing Railroad, now the Long Island Rail Road, decided to create an additional stop one mile west of their Little Neck depot, William moved the former Van Zandt chapel to serve as its station. In exchange, he asked that the station and the surrounding village be named Douglaston.

When Henry Hudson sailed to Manhattan in the early 1600’s, the Matinecoc Indians lived in northern Long Island. Seafood, game, and corn were plentiful. Abundant clam shells for making wampum made them the wealthiest Indians on Long Island. The Matinecoc made white wampum from the periwinkles and the more valuable black wampum from quohog.

The Dutch West India Company encouraged settlement in the New Netherlands. A circular of the time promoted Long Island as Eden-like with “deer, sixteen hands high, buffaloes which could be ridden and broken to the plow, large turkeys, 500 to the flock, and clear spring waters equal to light Dutch beer.”

Thomas Foster had fled from England to Holland due to religious persecution. He and his family were the first to settle on the northern shore on Long Island. In 1637 they built a small stone house with one window and wooden shutters where “the Alley” now meets Northern Boulevard.

New Englanders Richard Cornell, a Quaker from Rhode Island, and Thomas Hicks from Massachusetts were two of the earliest landowners in Little Neck. Thomas Hicks used force against the Matinecoc to secure his holdings.

In 1664 the Dutch surrendered the New Netherlands to a British fleet of 24 ships. New Amsterdam became New York. Queens was named for Catherine of Braganza, queen of their new ruler, the British monarch, Charles II. Britain ruled the area for the next one hundred and nineteen years.

Agriculture continued to be the mainstay of life. The Allens operated a mill that shrank and tightened homespun woolens woven on hand looms. The woolens could then be made into cloth. In 1752, James Hedges began to operate a gristmill in the Alley.

Cornelius Van Wyck built a house on his estate in 1735. Today it is noted for its hand-hewn shingles and salt box type roof. The interior has been restored. It is one of the few surviving Dutch colonial houses within New York City, and is designated a New York City Landmark.

The British occupied Long Island throughout the Revolutionary War, from August 28, 1776 to Nov. 21, 1783. They and their Hessian mercenaries used it as a staging and supply area. Everything was at British disposal; private homes, horses, livestock, crops, and forests. As the record says, “Soon there wasn’t a picket fence or a four-legged animal, except dogs, left standing.”

Hessians looted the Foster homestead and hung elderly Thomas Foster, descendant of the original settler, from an apple tree. Company commander Foster rescued him and personally “ran through” one of the Hessian soldiers with his sword.

General Washington designated Colonel Benjamin Tallmadge to create a network of spies among the occupying British forces. These spies included a merchant, an innkeeper, a farmer and several housewives. All risked the fate of Nathan Hale. One recruit used clothing on her clothesline to relay signals. Another gave dinner parties “to honor” British officers and gleaned information from their conversations. Couriers rode the dangerous muddy roads in the dark of night. This network helped foil Benedict Arnold’s plan to surrender West Point. Finally the British were defeated and withdrew.

In 1790, recently inaugurated President George Washington visited the Alley. He acknowledged a welcome and had refreshments at the tavern.

The Alley Pond settlement continued to grow and was the great center of the way of life in Little Neck. By 1813 it included gentlemen farmers, small “truck” farmers, merchants, artisans and oystermen.

In 1819 Wynant Van Zandt III, a wealthy New York merchant and alderman, purchased the peninsular estate on Little Neck Bay and built a large square mansion for his wife and fifteen children. Ten years later, he donated part of the funds and the land to build the Zion Episcopal Church.

When Van Zandt died in 1831, his heirs sold his estate in two parts. It time, the southern part became Douglaston Hill and the northern part Douglas Manor.

Joseph De Forest purchased the southern part and resold it to Cortland Van Beuren, who in turn sold it to Jeremiah Lambertson. Lambertson divided the land into generous 200 ft. by 200 ft. lots with streets named for trees. On July 23 and 27, 1853, he sold the lots to eighteen buyers. However, for the next fifty years very little building was done.

George Douglas, a wealthy Scot, bought the northern peninsula section and began to plant trees imported from all over the world. In 1862 when he died, his eighteen-year-old son William inherited his estate. “Willie” was known as a playboy and sailor of big yachts. For “Willie” the estate was a social hub for entertaining the wealthy and powerful of New York, including Gordon Bennet, publisher of the New York Herald, and financier J. P. Morgan. Their yachts were often moored on the Bay. In 1871 Willie won the first America’s Cup aboard the Sappho.

In 1866, when the Flushing Railroad reached Little Neck, the Old Depot served as its station. Soon the railroad created an additional stop one mile to the west. William donated the former chapel of the Van Zandt family to serve as its station. In exchange, he requested that the station and the village around it be named Douglaston.

Twenty years later, in 1887, “Willie” and resident subscribers funded a Queen Anne-style building and landscaping for the new Douglaston depot. Travelers still needed to take the ferry between Long Island City and New York since the rail line still had not reached Manhattan.

The great years of Little Neck clamming began in the 1860s. Capt. Christian W. Kirkman, a Danish sailor and fisherman, found he could increase the clam yield by planting oyster beds among them. The clams burrowed under the oyster beds to spawn, and multiplied at an incredible rate. These small hard clams were served in the best restaurants of New York and several European capitals. The industry was ruined by pollution from the city in the 1890s.

In 1898, Queens County became part of New York City. Many homes were built in anticipation of a direct route to Manhattan. Two major public works were finished by 1910, the Pennsylvania Railroad tunnel under the East River and the Queensborough Bridge. The city’s building of roads and bridges spurred tremendous suburban growth.

In 1905, The Rickert-Finlay Company bought the Benjamin Woolley farm and created the Westmoreland Development. They laid out streets and building lots. The 270 homes were given covenants and restrictions with their property deeds to preserve the atmosphere of comfortable living close to New York. These homes were advertised with the not quite accurate slogan “only 26 minutes to Manhattan”.

The following year, in 1906, William Douglas sold his property to the Rickert-Finlay Company. They developed the 175-acre estate into a carefully planned garden suburb town called Douglas Manor. The manor house served as a clubhouse and social center. Each home was within one mile of the station. Its 550 single-family homes include Queen Anne, Colonial, Tudor, and Mediterranean Revival architecture.

Douglaston Hill consists of the area between Douglas Manor and Northern Boulevard, bounded by Douglaston Parkway to the west, and 244th Street to the east. In the late 1800’s it was occupied by a variety of people, including summer residents, local tradesmen, and free blacks that worked in the oyster industry. In the early twentieth century most homes were built in anticipation of the completion of the railroad tunnel under the East River to create a direct route to Manhattan. Architectural styles in the area include Queen Anne, Craftsman, Bungalow, American Foursquare, Tudor Revival, and Colonial Revival. The oldest property in the district is the Zion Episcopal Church.

The rest of Douglaston and Little Neck developed rapidly, mostly with one family houses. The increased population needed increased services. Telephones, a volunteer fire department, a Mothers Club, Christian Endeavor Societies, schools, the American Red Cross, a library, a bank, a Girl Scout and a Boy Scout Troop, a newspaper, a garden club, and several places of worship were active by the middle of the 1930s.

When Northern Boulevard was widened in 1930, the remains from a Matinecoc Indian burial ground were reinterred on land at the Zion Episcopal Church.

With improved transportation to Douglaston and Little Neck, the importance of the Alley settlement waned. The City of New York Parks Department acquired much of the land. During the 1930s, through the Parks efforts to convert the area for recreational use and through the construction of the Long Island Expressway and Cross Island Parkway, several of the older structures were cleared and much of the marshland filled in. This marshland is now recognized as a vital link in nature’s ecosystem.

In 1974, the Parks Department created the Wetlands Reclamation Project and began rehabilitation of the natural wetlands of the park. Alley Pond Environmental Center, a National Environmental Study Area since 1976, has encouraged awareness of the environment. It serves families and over 20,000 students annually, offering hiking, birding, lectures, workshops, and tours. Alley Pond Park contains over 635 acres of forested hills, ponds, meadow, and salt marshes.

Since the 1970s, environmentalists have actively sought to preserve the salt marshes in Udalls Cove for the sake of Little Neck Bay. The Udalls Cove Preservation Committee was formed to lobby city planners to keep the cove as a national wildlife preserve.

A 600-year-old White Oak tree, the oldest tree on Long Island, stands at 233 Arleigh Road in Douglas Manor.

During the 1990’s, the Douglaston/Little Neck Historical Society headed the drive to preserve the two unique residential developments of Douglas Manor and Douglaston Hill. As of 2004, each area is designated as a New York City Historic District.

Sentiments spoken by a resident a few years ago still seem relevant, “What people here want is a continuation of the community this has been for years and whose essence is a rustic New England type town. Our community is the bay, the wetlands, large old trees and the beauty of nature around us that provides a sense of openness and of peace and quiet.”

In 1914, the Queens Borough Public Library opened a small branch in a Douglaston real estate office with 587 books. The next year, through the efforts of the Mothers Club and the school principal, the collection was moved to P.S. 94. Additional moves included the Community Church and 248-04 Northern Boulevard. On April 4 1962, the Douglaston/Little Neck Branch opened its doors in its new improved and expanded quarters at its present location of 249-01 Northern Boulevard.

Sources:

Douglaston Little Neck Historical Society: http://www.dlnhs.org

Flux, James A. and Levine Ty, Bayside Its Yesterdays and Tomorrows, the History of Bayside, Bayside, New York 1957

“The Fosters Made Their Mark on Early Queens” by Joan Brown Wettingfeld who is a historian, free-lance writer and member of the Borough President’s History Advisory Committee, Times/Ledger, May 5, 1994.

Fowler, George C. and Ernestine, Through the Years in Little Neck and Douglaston, Angle Offset, 1963.

Gubernick, Loys, Little Neck Then...and Now, Loys Gubernick, 1982.

Historical Walking Tour, 1975

History of Little Neck, 1952

Little Neck, Douglaston—In profile, by Gene Gleason of the Herald Tribune Staff, Herald Tribune, Dec. 22, 1963.

Long Island Division, Queens Borough Public Library, 89-11 Merrick Boulevard, Jamaica, NY

Queens Scape, Douglaston/Little Neck, Carol Polsky, Newsday, Sunday Dec 31, 1989

Shaman, Diana, If You’re Thinking of Living in: Douglaston, New York Times, March 25, 1990.