Wantagh Preservation Society

and the Wantagh Museum

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About the Wantagh Preservation Society

The Wantagh Preservation Society (WPS) is a non-profit organization based in Wantagh, Long Island. It maintains the Wantagh Museum and engages in other activities to improve the historical and environmental values of the community. The Wantagh Preservation Society was founded in 1965, in order to save Wantagh's Victorian Railroad Station from demolition, when plans for the present elevated railroad crossing called for its removal.

The WPS is responsible for maintain the museum grounds that include:

  • Old Wantagh Rail Road Station
  • “Jamaica” Parlor Car
  • Recreated 1904 Wantagh Post Office

WPS Officers:

  • President: Tom Watson
  • Vice President: Bob Meagher
  • Recording Secretary: Mary Corrigan
  • Treasurer: Wayne Wagner
  • Curator: Carol Poulos
  • Newsletter Editor and Webmaster: Jim Colotti
  • Trustees: Zack Brauer, Bob Cook, Fred Parola, Norene Parola, Barry Rivadue, Paul Sigler, Matt Susco, Mary Wagner, Elaine Yarris

As paraphrased from our first Newsletter in September 1966: The idea of preserving some of this town’s historic past, through the old Long Island Railroad Station, has blossomed into a much wider and far-reaching endeavor. From a small band of dedicated citizens the Wantagh Preservation Society has grown into a broad-based, permanent educational society, chartered by the State of New York, dedicated to the beatification and restoration of our community.

See Our First Newsletter

About the Wantagh Museum Grounds

The Wantagh Museum resides in three structures, The Station, The "Jamaica" Railroad Car and the Recreated 1904 Wantagh Post Office. The Station was built in 1885 and originally stood on Railroad Avenue, east of Wantagh Avenue. In 1966, The Station was moved to its current location to save it from demolition when the Wantagh Railroad service was expanded. After this move, The Station was restored to its 1904 appearance, and in 1982, the Wantagh Preservation Society opened the structure to the public as a museum. The ticket booth in The Station was restored to reflect the presence of Emma Whitmore, the first woman to serve as ticket agent in the Wantagh Station.


Built in 1912 for the Long Island Rail Road (LIRR), The "Jamaica" was a magnificent parlor car complete with solarium, cooking facilities and an ice-cooled air conditioning system. It was donated by the LIRR to the Wantagh Preservation Society in 1972. The moving process, from the storage site at Grumman in Bethpage to the museum grounds, lasted two days and required several trucks, two dollies and a crane. Time and equipment were donated by local companies to complete this move, and to set the Car on its bed of hand-hewn ties and 80-pound rails.


Across from The Station stands the recreated 1904 Wantagh Post Office. This 10 x 12 foot structure was built in 1907 and once stood on the corner of Wantagh and Railroad Avenues. (This location is now occupied by Mulcahy's.) At the time of its construction, Wantagh was a relatively rural town populated mostly by farmers. Used until the mid-1920s, the Original Post Office was operated by one person, who sorted mail into slots. Gertrude Ballem was the last person to work in the Original Post Office.


Together, the Railroad Station, the "Jamaica" and the Post Office offer visitors an opportunity to see important parts of everyday life from an era 100 years ago. The Station contains displays including a collection of turn-of-the-century photographs that depict life in early Wantagh. Several display cases feature memorabilia from Wantagh's past and exhibits of historical themes.

Join Us!

The money raised through membership is used for maintenance of our museum and grounds. You are not just joining the society - you become a supporter of history by enabling the society to continue its work to educate residents, especially children, on Wantagh's past. Thanks!

Gallery

These photos can give you a general idea of what the Wantagh Museum has to offer. But to truly experience our displays, please visit us. There is no admission charge.

  • All
  • Museum Interior
  • Museum Grounds
  • Jamaica Interior
Wantagh Museum Grounds during autumn

Wantagh Museum Grounds

during autumn

Recreated 1904

Recreated 1904 Wantagh Post Office

Wantagh Post Office

Field of Honor at the Wantagh Museum

Field of Honor

Summertime flag display by 6-12 Assoc

Display Case inside the Wantagh Museum

Display Case

Showing historical area artifacts

Historical Landmarks in Wantagh

Historical Landmark Display

Highlights the many area historical landmarks

Map Display Wall in the Wantagh Museum

Map Display Wall

Area maps from 1904 to current day

Historical Apparatus on display at the Wantagh Museum

Historical Apparatus

Corn Sheller, Scale, Hand Planter

Interior of Wantagh's original PO

Interior of the recreated

1904 Wantagh PO

Wantagh Station's Original Ticket Booth

Ticket Booth

in the Train Museum

Observation Room in the Jamaica

Observation Room

in the Jamaica

Bedroom in the Jamaica

Bedroom

in the Jamaica

Dining Room in the Jamaica

Dining Room

in the Jamaica

Autumn at the Wantagh Museum

Wantagh Museum Grounds

during autumn

Winter at the Wantagh Museum

Wantagh Museum Grounds

during winter

Santa visits Wantagh

Santa

waves from the Jamaica

The Jamaica during spring

The Jamaica

during spring

Wantagh's Original PO during Winter

Recreated 1904 Wantagh PO

during winter

Join the Wantagh Preservation Society Today!

By joining the WPS, you are helping us to maintain our museum and grounds. By joining you also help us continue our efforts to educate residents, especially children, on Wantagh's past. We also invite you to become an active member of the society. Thanks!

Join Online

  • Fast and Easy
  • All Major Credit Cards
  • Select Membership Level and click Join
Pay with PayPal

Join by Postal Mail

  • Click "Get Form"
  • Print and fill out form
  • Mail with check to address on form

Fun Facts about Wantagh and the WPS

Click the topic or the down chevron on the right of the topic to learn more about these interesting facts.

Contact and Hours

In addition to being open on Sunday afternoons from mid-April to mid-September, the Museum hosts many special events throughout the year. Hours are subject to change, as the Museum is staffed by all volunteers.

Location:

1700 Wantagh Avenue
Wantagh, Long Island, NY 11793

Mail Address:

PO Box 132
Wantagh, Long Island, NY 11793

Email:

wantaghmuseum@gmail.com

Call:

(516) 826-8767

Facebook:

Our FB Group

Hours:

Sunday, 2 PM - 4 PM
Mid-April to Mid-September
No admission Charge