THE ILLUSTRATED HISTORY OF THE MORICHES BAY AREA
Van and Mary Field
Although I have shown this book before on another page, I wanted to give it some additional exposure. It really has become more and more important to me as I've explored the relationship between the Moriches and the Mastics and have continued to use photos from it to illustrate my point. Not to mention Van and Mary have always been there to answer my questions or provide another angle on the story. Here are a just a few more of the many varied photos through the years and centuries that are in it.
This was the Phone Company Office on Railroad Avenue. They had a huge mechanical switchboard there. Center Moriches provided the original phone service for Mastic and Mastic Beach up until about 1950. Both my mother (briefly) and sister were telephone operators here.
THE OPERA HOUSE BUILT IN THE EARLY 1880's WAS ON EAST MAIN STREET AND LATER MOVED OVER TO RAILROAD AVENUE. THIS IS A TINTYPE
Boats, Homes, Estates, Stores, Churches, Schools, and Moriches, Center Moriches, East Moriches & Eastport people are all in here. Aerial and street level views are presented along with some old property maps. That is a Naptha engine in this boat on the Senix.
We used to eat here fairly often in the 1950's . I recall the huge mural of Custer's Last Stand they had which always seemed a little odd for a dining room subject. The photos span from 1800's till 1970's.
"Doctor" Van Field taught electronics next door to my auto mechanics class at the BOCES vocational school on Station Road in Bellport in the 1960's. We used to work on his big HEMI 1950's Chrysler there. Van has recently reprinted this book that he and his wife Mary put out about 20 some years back. The Fields are life long residents of the Moriches area and have been the Historians for it for many years.
I initially saw this book on my first trip into the Moriches Library in 2001 when I was just starting this project. As I have learned more and more about the inter relationship of the people and towns of Moriches area to the Mastic area, with many of the estate workers coming from Moriches, this book has become a valuable asset to my studies. Not to mention its plain enjoyable, because Moriches figured strongly into my childhood also. My uncle lived there, my sister graduated from high school and worked there at the phone company switchboard. My mother worked there as a cook for the St John's convent and I worked there after school at the Hill's supermarket in 1962. I saw first run movies like 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea in Center Moriches. Through this book I learned that the movie theatre I was sitting in 1954, was none other than Senix Hall built in 1884 and it was moved quite a distance from Main St. over to Railroad Ave! No easy task with logs and horses. The "BIG MO" on the books cover was located at the corner of Main St & Railroad Ave. The movie house wasn't moved there yet, but that house behind "The Mo" became telephone company my sister worked in.
Van passed away in 2007 Though not readily available in bookstores, I'm sure if you write to Mary Field, she will be happy to fix you up with one. It has 288 Pages, some valuable first person accounts, and Umpteen Hundred High Voltage Photos! going way back into the 19th century. You can contact Mary at firstname.lastname@example.org or 17 Inwood Road, Center Moriches, NY 11934