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Idlehour, the second try by William Kissam Vanderbilt (Credit: Dowling College Library)

Idlehour, the second try by William Kissam Vanderbilt to build in Oakdale (the first mansion burned down), was completed in 1901 and no expense was spared in the process. Marble was imported from Italy, 24-carat gold-leaf accented woodwork was imported for the salon, elaborately carved screens and panels stood in the lounges and drawing rooms, and ornate plaster work adorned ceilings and walls. The mansion had 110 rooms and a final cost exceeding $9.5 million dollars. The mansion is now part of Dowling College. (Undated)

Long Island historic houses of the South Shore

"Long Island Historic houses of the South Shore," by Christopher Collora, features 115 mansions and historic homes on the South Shore.

Idlehour, the second try by William Kissam Vanderbilt
(Credit: Dowling College Library)

Idlehour, the second try by William Kissam Vanderbilt to build in Oakdale (the first mansion burned down), was completed in 1901 and no expense was spared in the process. Marble was imported from Italy, 24-carat gold-leaf accented woodwork was imported for the salon, elaborately carved screens and panels stood in the lounges and drawing rooms, and ornate plaster work adorned ceilings and walls. The mansion had 110 rooms and a final cost exceeding $9.5 million dollars. The mansion is now part of Dowling College. (Undated)

The original structure of La Grange Inn in
(Credit: West Islip Historical Society)

The original structure of La Grange Inn in West Islip dates back to 1750, which was a hotel and tavern. Toward the end of the 20th century, it evolved into a catering hall. Today there is a proposal to relocate the Inn a few hundred feet to the back of the lot and build a CVS Pharmacy in its spot, but the plan is controversial because preservationists believe the structure would not survive the move. (Undated)

The Jones
(Credit: Historical Society of the Massapequas)

The Jones "Brick House" was the first brick home on the South Shore, built in 1696 by Major Thomas and Freelove Jones (namesakes of Jones Beach). After Thomas Jones' death in 1713, the house was thought to be haunted. In 1836 it was demolished and replaced with Massapequa Manor. The site is currently Saints Peter & Paul Church on Merrick Road and Biltmore Boulevard. (Undated)

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Sagtikos Manor in Bay Shore is the oldest
(Credit: Suffolk County Parks Department)

Sagtikos Manor in Bay Shore is the oldest house in the town of Islip, with its first section built in 1697. On April 21, 1790, George Washington spent the night at the Manor while he was touring Long Island. The house was expanded into its present form in 1902. In 2002, Suffolk County purchased the property from the foundation to keep it from being sold to a developer. Today The Sagtikos Manor Historical Society gives tours of the house. (1902)

Christopher M. Collora, of West Islip, author of
(Credit: Heather Walsh)

Christopher M. Collora, of West Islip, author of "Long Island Historic Houses of the South Shore," holds a page from his book showing a picture, on the upper right page, of East Islip's Brookwood Hall in its glory, while in the background is the mansion today. (April 17, 2013)

Christopher M. Collora, of West Islip, author of
(Credit: Heather Walsh)

Christopher M. Collora, of West Islip, author of "Long Island Historic Houses of the South Shore," poses in front of the 41-room Georgian Revival-style mansion named Brookwood Hall that is now the home to the Islip Arts Council, the Islip Art Museum and the Town of Islip Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs Departments in East Islip. (April 17, 2013)

The Frank Buck Jungle Camp was built in
(Credit: Historical Society of the Massapequas)

The Frank Buck Jungle Camp was built in Massapequa in 1934 by Frank Buck, hunter, "collector of wild animals," movie actor, director, writer and producer. The only thing that still stands is the Lion House, which is now part of a shopping center on Montauk Highway next to John Burns Park. (1930s)

Pleasure Island, built on an island in Champlain
(Credit: The Pless Family)

Pleasure Island, built on an island in Champlain Creek in East Islip, was the home of Schuyler Parsons, Jr., who could have been known as a real-life South Shore Gatsby because of the people he knew and the parties he held there between 1924 and 1928. Among those who visited were Charlie Chaplin, Rudolph Valentino, Cole Porter, Helen Hayes, Noel Coward, Douglas Fairbanks, George Gershwin and Charles Lindbergh. In the 1980s, the house was moved, and later demolished. The house in this photo was built afterwards and is owned by the Ruffino family. (Undated)

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Bayard Cutting Arboretum State Park in Oakdale is
(Credit: East Islip Historical Society)

Bayard Cutting Arboretum State Park in Oakdale is one of the last remaining estates on the South Shore of Long Island. It has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places since 1973. The house at the center of the property was built to look like an English country home, while the grounds were designed around an arboretum that was planted with the horticultural specimens of William Bayard Cutting and landscaped by Frederick Law Olmsted in 1887. (Undated)

This French chateau-inspired mansion named Wereholme was built
(Credit: Islip Hamlet Historical Society)

This French chateau-inspired mansion named Wereholme was built in 1917 in Islip by Harold Hathaway and Lousine Peters-Weekes. It was designed by architect Grosvenor Atterbury. In 1984, Adeline Hathaway Scully (who had inherited the house from her parents) willed the property to the National Audubon Society. In 2004, Suffolk County purchased the mansion and converted it into the Suffolk County Environmental Interpretive Center, otherwise known as the Scully Estate. (Undated)

Indian Neck Hall was a 1,000-acre estate in
(Credit: East Islip Historical Society)

Indian Neck Hall was a 1,000-acre estate in Oakdale designed by Ernest Flagg and built for Singer Manufacturing magnate Frederick Gilbert Bourne between 1897-1900. It was reputed to have been the largest estate on Long Island's South Shore at the time, housing an 80-foot long greenhouse, a bowling alley, a swimming tank and a Turkish bath. Frederick Law Olmsted landscaped the grounds. In 1926, the estate was sold and transformed into LaSalle Military Academy. In 2001, it was sold to St. John's University. (Undated)

Sewan was the home of George Stanton Floyd-Jones,
(Credit: Massapequa Historical Society)

Sewan was the home of George Stanton Floyd-Jones, who built it in the late 1800s. Eventually the property and mansion were left to the Catholic Church, which sold it to the Massapequa school district, which used the house and the carriage house as schools until 1952 -- when the school district tore it down to build Massapequa's first high school. (Undated)

This is one of ten
(Credit: Bay Shore Historical Society)

This is one of ten "villas" completed in 1901 on 100 acres of land in Islip called Bayberry Point, by sugar industrialist Harry Havemeyer, who wanted to make the property into a modern Venice with relatively low-cost houses that fronted a canal opening into Great South Bay. (Undated)

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This mansion was the West Islip summer home
(Credit: Katie Hafele)

This mansion was the West Islip summer home of Minor C. Keith, a railroad businessman. The little girl standing in front is Katie Whalen Hafele, whose father, Martin Whalen, was superintendent of the estate. She lived on the estate for several years and remembers, "It was a beautiful time to see all these mansions along Montauk Highway." The house was demolished around 1937. (Undated)

Namkee was built in 1891 for Captain Edward
(Credit: Bayport Heritage Association)

Namkee was built in 1891 for Captain Edward Gillette. In this photo, the family poses outside on the porch. (Undated)

This is the central part of the Plumb
(Credit: East Islip Historical Society)

This is the central part of the Plumb Estate that was moved from its original locale in East Islip to Bay Shore's Main Street. It is now on the Historic Register. (Undated)

This 400-acre estate, named Deer Range Farm in
(Credit: East Islip Historical Society)

This 400-acre estate, named Deer Range Farm in East Islip, became a story-book, castle-like structure in the hands of James Neale Plumb in the years between 1877 and1899. After his death, his family sold it. Parts of the estate were recycled and moved to neighboring towns such as a storefront in Bay Shore. But most of the mansion is no longer standing. In the 1920s, the land became Heckscher State Park. (c. 1884)

The Foster Estate was built in 1909 by
(Credit: Town of Babylon)

The Foster Estate was built in 1909 by J. Stanley Foster II, president of Bowery Bank. It was a 40-room Mediterranean-style villa that sat on 142 acres on the south side of Montauk Highway. The estate no longer stands. (Undated)

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This mansion, called Acadia, was built in 1888
(Credit: Bayport Heritage Association)

This mansion, called Acadia, was built in 1888 by Charles F. Stoppani, who was one of the partners of Consolidated Exchange at a time when Bayport was part of the "Hidden Gold Coast" on the South Shore of Long Island, extending from the border of Nassau County all the way to the Bayport. (Undated)

The Julian Davies estate in Great River was
(Credit: Suffolk County Parks Department)

The Julian Davies estate in Great River was built in 1882 and set on 300 acres of land, but "it has changed so much that you'd never recognize it," says Christopher Collora, author of "Long Island Historic Houses of the South Shore." Today it serves as the clubhouse of the Timber Point Country Club and Golf Course, whose founders were Horace Havermeyer, Buell Hollister and W. Kingsland Macy. After Davies' death in 1920, the family put the house up for sale, advertising in the classifieds of Country Life. (September, 1920)

(Credit: Bay Shore Historical Society)

"The Oaks" was the summer residence of Louis Bossert, a Brooklyn lumber dealer and real estate developer. The estate covered 400 acres with 1 mile of private bayfront, held a working farm, had private railroad access, sat on a 64-foot wide canal off the bay and housed an elaborate carriage house, squash court and its own sewage and drainage plant. The main house could seat 100 guests for dinner and was originally designed by Calvert Vaux. What is left of the mansion today is the Southward Ho Country Clubhouse. (1908)

In 1942, Brookwood Hall turned into a home
(Credit: East Islip Historical Society)

In 1942, Brookwood Hall turned into a home run by the Orphan Asyllum Society of Brooklyn, serving 500 children. But with the rise of the foster home system, the home closed in 1965. In this 1952 photo, boys study in one of the mansion's light-filled rooms. (April, 1952)

Brookwood Hall is a grand Georgian Revival house
(Credit: East Islip Historical Society)

Brookwood Hall is a grand Georgian Revival house built in 1903 for Harry K. Knapp of Manhattan, one of the city's many millionaire businessmen who chose the South Shore of Islip as a summer retreat. The original site extended over 80 acres. The building is now home to Islip town offices, the Islip Art Museum and the Islip Arts Council. (Undated)

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This is the cover of
(Credit: Handout)

This is the cover of "Long Island Historic Houses of the South Shore" by Christopher Collora (Arcadia Publishing), which covers 115 mansions and historic homes from Massapequa to Mastic. (2013)

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