Friday, June 8, 2018

Republic Airport

Republic Airport was developed by Sherman Fairchild as the Fairchild Flying Field in East Farmingdale in late 1927 as his airplane and airplane engine factories and 10-acre flying field on Motor Avenue in South Farmingdale were inadequate to support the mass assembly line production he desired for his FC-2, Model 21, Model 41 and Model 71 airplanes. Fairchild's Faircam Realty, Inc. purchased property on the south side of Route 24-Conklin Street and had the Fairchild Flying Field's original layout plan prepared on November 3, 1927. Airplane manufacturing in Farmingdale originated with Lawrence Sperry in the village of Farmingdale in 1917 and continued in South Farmingdale from 1921 until his tragic death in December 1923.

During World War II, 1-19 was Republic's longest runway- stretching almost to Route 109. Conklin Street at Republic was closed to the public in January 1941 by the Suffolk County Highway Department to permit the construction of the massive Republic industrial complex.  In 1942, Republic Aviation built a 900' "dogleg" around the factory after Ranger Engine had built in the Conklin Street roadbed. The "dogleg" allowed workers in carpools driving east access to the Southern State Parkway via New Highway. Conklin Street was re-opened to the public in 1965 when Republic was taken over by Fairchild Hiller. The cumbersome "dogleg" was ended in the late 1990's when the Republic factory complex was razed and Conklin Street was straightened.

In 1965, Fairchild Hiller Corporation acquired Republic Airport and sold it to Farmingdale Corporation. In December 1966, the airport became a general aviation airport. By March 1967, the airport was of interest to the Metropolitan Commuter Transportation Authority as a means of meeting demands of aviation on Long Island. Recognizing the airport as an asset, Metropolitan Transportation Authority two years later acquired the airport at the cost of $25 Million.

The MTA installed an instrument landing system (ILS) on runway 14-32, built the Republic Airport Terminal building cooperated with the Federal Aviation Administration, which built the new 100' high control tower, convinced the US Government to transfer 94 acres to the airport in 1971, and purchased the 77-acre Lambert property on the north side of Route 109 and the Breslau Gardens property between New Highway and Route 109 in 1972. 

After complaints that the MTA was not contributing taxes to local governments and questions about MTA deficits at Republic, ownership of the airport was transferred to the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) by the New York State Legislature in April 1983.

Companies that have existed at the Airport:

The Fulton Truck Company was the earliest manufacturer at the airport
Years Active: 1916-1925

Sherman Fairchild chose the new location for his company after surveying the site by air.
Years Active: 1925 -1931

Sherman Fairchild started his engine company
Years Active: 1928 -1955

Leroy Grumman moved from Valley Stream To Farmingdale 
Years Active (at the airport): 1932-1937

Alexander De Seversky founded a new aircraft company
Years Active 1935-1939

Seversky was dismissed from the company and the board of directors re-named it Republic Aviation
Years Active 1939-1965

Fairchild-Hiller Corporation
Years Active 1965-1972

Fairchild Republic Corporation
Years Active 1972-1987


“New – LI Republic airports.” Google Sites.

Republic Airport - Long Island's Executive Airport – History.

Friday, June 1, 2018

South Oaks Hospital

On March 1, 1881, a group of men met to discuss plans to form The Long Island Home Hotel for Nervous Invalids. Among the original founders were David S. S. Sammis, Adolphus G. Bailey, Townsend Cox, William Blake, Stephen R. Williams, Prince H. Foster, and Daniel J. Runyon. On April 12, 1881, these Trustees met at the Grand Union Hotel in New York City and agreed to purchase 14 acres of land in Amityville.

The first patient was admitted on January 26, 1882. In 1894, physician-in-charge Dr.  O. J. Wilsey’s emphasis on keeping up with the times resulted in the construction of a separate cottage built to accommodate seven patients. The Villa was opened in 1895 and was later renamed Sammis Cottage. This same cottage was later renamed Hope House.

In 1948, Griffing Hall (named for Board Member, Robert P. Griffing) was erected with offices for administration, doctors, social services, admissions and medical records.

In the 1950’s, The Long Island Home transitioned from a long-stay sanitarium to a psychiatric hospital. At that time, the hospital became known as South Oaks Hospital was born. In 1952, the Board of Directors decided to convert Searle Cottage into a nursing home. This facility was renamed Broadlawn Manor Nursing Home.

In July 1970, South Oaks established Hope House, a specialized inpatient unit for young men and women who were addicted to drugs. In March 1971, recognizing the needs of adolescents with emotional problems, the hospital opened an Adolescent Pavilion for young people between the ages of 13 and 20. In 1972, South Oaks set up a Training Program for Alcoholism Counseling. The Institute of Alcohol Studies at South Oaks was formed in 1972 and was chartered by the Board of Regents of the New York State Education Department.

In June 1980, South Oaks established Sage House, a rehabilitative program for young men aged 13 to 20 who had a history of abusing more than one drug, in combination with alcohol. In 1981, South Oaks conducted an extensive study and three-part program on compulsive gambling. With the advent of this program, South Oaks became one of the first hospitals in the country to offer services for compulsive gamblers and their families.

In 1995, Broadlawn Manor opened its medical model and social model daycare programs to support the frail and elderly during the day while allowing them to remain active in the community.


“History.” The Long Island Home.