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Historic Building is Gone

Footnotes to Long Island History

Historic Building is Gone

by

Thomas R. Bayles


       The picture is of the old Woodhull homestead at Setauket and according to Miss Kate Strong the smaller end of the house was built by the first Richard Woodhull, who died in 1690. When the rest of the house was built seems to be unknown but it was always owned and occupied by members of the Woodhull family

                Richard Woodhull was one of the foremost men among the settlers of Brookhaven town and the facts of history concerning him are the modest but unaltering witnesses to a character which for principles of honor and justice, unselfish motives, far seeing discretion, kindliness of manners and constant zeal in public service has few superiors among the honored names that grace the pages of American history. He was born in Northamptonshire , England September 13th, 1620 and came to this country when a young man. His first appearance in this country was in Southampton in 1644 where he was very active in the public life of the town. His name appears in the records of Brookhaven town in 1657, when on the 20th of July of that year he arranged the purchase of two necks of meadow at Mastic from the Indians for the town.

                He was appointed a magistrate for the town by the court at Hartford on may 16th,1661 which position he continued to hold for many years. He was one of the patentees of the town and he was appointed to numerous offices and acted on many important commissions. One of the most conspicuous of which was that masterly stroke of diplomacy by which the title of the town to the whole northern part was forever freed from the complication of Indian claims under which it was liable to fall.

                Abraham Woodhull one of Washington spies during the revolution lived in this old house and operated under the name of Mr. Culper.

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