History goes beyond academia and the classroom setting and can also be found while visiting different towns across New York. For those who are interested in learning about local history, a starting point can be historic signs and markers. Public history allows for a more informal education, sparking interests and giving those who desire the tools to research further. While visiting the town of East Rockaway on Long Island, most of the historic signs were in good shape, and the historic signs, makers, and memorials, stood out as perfect representations of the town’s history.
One favorite was the site of the Alexander Davison Home, the son of a revolutionary soldier, as that is my favorite time period. It is important to note that Alexander Davison, bought the Grist Mill from Joseph Haviland in 1818. This Grist Mill is now located in Memorial Park.
Another was the marker indicating where the first grist mill and saw mill stood. Created by Joseph Haviland in 1688, the mill was a great success for the town, increasing activity. And later on it became a place for boats to stop before heading to their final destination with their goods and supplies. Then in 1962, as town members did not want to see such an important building succumb to ruin, the town of East Rockaway took ownership of the building.
The town of East Rockaway, equally excelled in honoring their fallen firemen. In regards to the memorials found in Memorial Park as well as the in front of the Liberty Hose Company #2 firehouse, the fallen heroes are represented and respected, in a manner that informs and educates.
The Liberty Hose Company #2 firehouse, has been a part of my life since before I could talk, my dad is a volunteer fireman for the company, so of course, the company and firefighting is extremely important to me. Not only do I respect the courage necessary for the job, I think it is equally important to remember the fallen heroes that sacrificed their life to save others. Which I feel the town of East Rockaway did an amazing job remembering that no one forgets.
Signs can highlight important events in history that should never be forgotten. Tragically, the Town of East Rockaway lost some heroes in the terror attacks of 9/11. The memorial which can be found in Memorial Park is a reminder to all of what happened and the sacrifice that some had to make.