Stony Brook Homes for Sale
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The character and charm of Stony Brook real estate is the result, in part, of philanthropist Ward Melville who turned the fishing community of Stony Brook into a model New England Village complete with white clapboard and quaint shops and Colonial Williamsburg homes. Melville donated the land and the money for building the State University of New York at Stony Brook as well as for the local school district.
Stony Brook real estate is primarily a residential market. The area has virtually no industrial or commercial base due to current zoning laws. The attractive North Shore village of hills, harbors and beaches offers a mix of the past and the present with its historical scenic location and the lively atmosphere created by students and professionals. Stony Brook Village is a showcase of quaint shops, fine dining and breathtaking harbor views.
Stony Brook visitors and residents alike enjoy Sand Street Beach, a duck pond, a historic grist mill (c. 1751), as well as the newly created Avalon Park, which has a fabulous boardwalk, trails, landscaping, and a year-round groundskeeper. Additionally, the Long Island Museum is billed as one of the largest Carriage Museums of its type in America. The Museum has more types of horse drawn carriages than you might ever imagine.
Stony Brook Residential Listings
Jolie Powell Realty Inc.
406 Main St
Port Jefferson, NY 11777
Stony Brook is a hamlet and census-designated place (CDP) in the Town of Brookhaven in Suffolk County, New York, on the North Shore of Long Island. Begun in the colonial era as an agricultural enclave, the hamlet experienced growth first as a resort town and then to its current state as one of Long Island’s major tourist towns and centers of education. Despite being referred to as a village by residents and tourists alike, Stony Brook has never been legally incorporated by the state. The population was 13,740 at the 2010 census.
The CDP is adjacent to the main campus of Stony Brook University, a major research center within the State University of New York, and also The Stony Brook School, a private college preparatory school. It is also home to the Long Island Museum of American Art, History, and Carriages and the Stony Brook Village Center, a privately maintained commercial center that was planned in the style of a traditional New England village.
History (Stony Brook NY)
Stony Brook was first settled in the late 17th century. It was originally known by the native name Wopowog and then as Stoney Brook, with both names likely referring to the interconnected bodies of water at the hamlet’s western edge. It began as a satellite community of adjacent Setauket, New York, the Town of Brookhaven’s first settlement, and its land was included in the initial 1655 purchase from the native Setalcott tribe.
The Three Village Inn, housed in the c.1751 Richard Hallock home
A grist mill was built in 1699 on the water body now known as the Mill Pond. The current structure, which replaced the original in 1751, ground grain into the 1940s and has since been repurposed for public tours. For religious services and education, the hamlet’s original residents had to attend institutions in the neighboring communities of Setauket and St. James. In the latter half of the 18th century, activity began to shift from the mill area north toward the Harbor as new residences, a number of which still stand, were constructed.
Stony Brook was a remote area through the 18th century aside for a modest amount of commerce near the mill at the intersection of Main Street and Harbor Road. The community’s development was stalled by its poorly accessible harbor relative to nearby Setauket and Port Jefferson. In the 1840s, local painter William Sidney Mount led a call for the harbor’s dredging. This was completed twice, but after the harbor filled in both times the effort was abandoned. Lacking the resources of its neighboring harbor settlements, Stony Brook based its economy on agriculture and the cordwood industry.
The Long Island Rail Road reached Stony Brook in the 1870s, creating an easy link between New York City and the citizens of Stony Brook. Stony Brook quickly became a popular summer resort for city dwellers attempting to escape the hazards and stress of urban life. The establishment of the Stony Brook Assembly in 1909 also helped to draw more residents to the local area. A number of these newcomers constructed houses and cottages, many of which were either originally made for year-round use or have since been converted to such.
The local post office, centerpiece of the Stony Brook Village Center
Nevertheless, the majority of residences were local farmers and businessmen who depended on all necessities being in easy reach. Most businesses were then located on the compact plot that would become the contemporary village green. Unlike today, the shops in this area were utilitarian and haphazardly arranged.
The history of the unincorporated “village” is closely linked to that of Ward Melville, a local businessman who owned what would become the CVS Corporation. At one point owned much of what his family coined as the Three Village area (consisting of Stony Brook, the hamlet of Setauket, and the incorporated village of Old Field).
Shops in the Stony Brook Village Center
Beginning in 1939 with the creation of his Stony Brook Community Fund, Melville used his wealth to begin the transformation of part of the hamlet into his idea of an idyllic New England village, the Stony Brook Village Center, with white clapboard buildings and quaint stores. The focus had been in the previous center of the village’s commerce, which now consists of a village green and a crescent of stores embellished with stone walkways and seasonal gardening. To accomplish this, Melville moved many of the existing shops in the plot into the crescent and modified their details for consistency, a design model similar to that of Colonial Williamsburg. As a centerpiece to the crescent, Melville built the Stony Brook Post Office, decorated by a large eagle that flaps its wings to mark each hour.
The main alley across the Stony Brook University campus
Stony Brook University Hospital
Melville donated the land and funds to New York State for establishing a branch of the State University of New York in the area. This led what was then called the State University College on Long Island, at the time in constrictive Oyster Bay quarters, to relocate and change its name to Stony Brook University. Melville also donated land and funds for the local school district. The Three Village Central School District today serves several communities in the vicinity and has named its flagship Ward Melville High School after the philanthropist.
Tourist attractions include the Stony Brook Grist Mill and the Long Island Museum of American Art, History, and Carriages, a large complex of buildings originally known as the Stony Brook Carriage House and Suffolk Museum. Other Stony Brook attractions are the 19th-century William Sidney Mount House, the St. James Episcopal Chapel, and the West Meadow Beach Historic District.