Starting in January, The Point Lookout Chamber of Commerce will publish excerpts from The Point Lookout Historical Publication, "The Lookout".
The "Lookout" was previously published in 2006 by The Point Lookout Historical Society and includes historical journals and stories that disseminate the memories and anecdotes of the community of Point Lookout, NY.
In the coming months, we will feature a monthly installation about the bankers, bootleggers, businesses, bars, bay shacks and clubs of the past of Point Lookout, NY.
We hope to bring to light the stories that make our community unique and irreplaceable.
Our first installation starting in January 2012 will trace the humble beginnings of Point Lookout, NY when it was simply known as "Nassau by the Sea".
October 2006 | Vol. 1 No. 1 | Point Lookout, NY
Point Lookout NY Historical Society:
Historical Synopsis of Pt Lookout NY
The hamlet of Point Lookout, NY is located at the east end of a barrier island lying between Reynolds Channel and the Atlantic Ocean. Jones Inlet separates it from Jones Beach Island, while Lido Boulevard connects Point Lookout to the hamlet of Lido Beach and the city of Long Beach.
The humble beginnings of Point Lookout dates back as far as 1634 when earlier settlers negotiated parts of Long Beach Island from the Native American inhabitants of the Island.
In 1721 a whaling outpost was established at Jones Inlet with the sole purpose of tracking whales off the coast of Long Island.
In 1855, The United States Coast Guard established a Coast Guard Station Point Lookout as “Station Short Beach,” the station took its original name from a small spit of land just east of Jones Inlet. The original building built by the U.S. Life Saving Service was a wood framed structure, which was later replaced as a two story brick building complete with a connected watch tower, and a second building serving as the boathouse with a marine railway system.
The railroad connecting Long Beach to Point Lookout was completed in 2 months and made it's inaugural run in 1881. Between 1881-1851 Real Estate speculators built a series of hotels and cottages to appeal to vacationers, but this initial venture proved unsuccessful and failed by 1886.
Rail service was re-established by 1887 and was subsequently destroyed by "The Great September Gust" -- a hurricane that wiped out the tracks. In 1892, the Point Lookout Hotel burned to the ground.
In general, the attempts of creating a recreation destination of Point Lookout had been unsuccessful.
By 1900, a commercial fishing industry began to prosper in and around the waters of Point Lookout. By that time, there were approximately 27 cottages that made of the hamlet.
Point Lookout's first post office was officially chartered in 1906. Around this time real estate speculators returned to the barrier island and coined the area as "Nassau-by-the-Sea". A board-walk appeared of the bayside of town that boasted a newly erected church. In addition, marshy sections of town were filled in with the dredging that occurred nearby in Reynolds Channel.
By 1927, with the arrival of electricity and water lines extended to Point Lookout, development in earnest began in the community. By 1928, the remnants of Nasau-by-the-Sea were plowed over by sand and approximately 100 homes sprung up around the hamlet.
Merolas opened it's market in May of 1930 and remains as the only surviving business continually run in the community.
Local government was established in 1931 with the formation of The Point Lookout Civic Association.
Over the course of the next decade, a slew of development occurs with the construction of the Meadowbrook Causeway and The Meadowbrook Parkway. By 1940, the community acquired the rights to the beach with the creation of a stone jetty to protect Jones Inlet and Point Lookout.