Long Island: Our Story

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Two decades ago, Newsday began publishing the first pages of “Long Island: Our Story,” our celebrated 273-part series that told the history of this island we call home, from the Ice Age to the Space Age. Now, 20 years later, we’re proud to once again share this remarkable story with a new generation of Long Islanders.

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Chapter 1

The birth of Long Island

Our story

The birth of Long Island

From a glacier as tall as a skyscraper to a fish-shaped island awaiting its first inhabitants

Chapter 1 of “Long Island: Our Story” is available here.

In the belly of the earth

In the belly of the earth

Water tunnel offers rock-hard and ages-old clues about the formation of LI

Bill Davis/Newsday

The evolution of Long Island Sound

The evolution of Long Island Sound

Once a river, a valley, a lake, and recently the body of water we know today

Steven Sunshine

Long Island - Not really an island?

Long Island - Not really an island?

A decision was rendered by the Supreme Court in 1985

NASA

Washed to the sea

Washed to the sea

Despite humanity's best efforts, erosion poses a relentless threat

Bill Davis/Newsday

More floods in the future?

More floods in the future?

If sea levels keep rising, many LI communities can expect wet changes

Bill Davis/Newsday

When the island was new

When the island was new

Before people arrived, a pristine land of wildlife and sweet vegetation

Bill Davis/Newsday

Chapter 2

The first Long Islanders

Our story

The first Long Islanders

Some 550 generations across 12 millennia occupied the Island before Europeans arrived

Chapter 2 of “Long Island: Our Story” is available here.

Untangling a myth

Untangling a myth

Europeans apparently mistook Indian place names for tribal labels

Steve Madden/Newsday

Masters of agriculture

Masters of agriculture

Indian communities grew corn, beans, squash and tobacco in Long Island soil

Southold Indian Museum

Gods of the Indians

Gods of the Indians

Old Dutch writings relate to some of what original Long Islanders believed of life and the afterlife

Boston Public Library

Keepers of a lost culture

Keepers of a lost culture

A dying language once heard on Long Island is spoken by a few on a Canadian reserve

Bill Davis/Newsday

Jefferson's lost legacy

Jefferson's lost legacy

A robbery foils his work to save some of the Island's Algonquian language

Independence National Historical Park

Indian names were his fame

Indian names were his fame

William Wallace Tooker's quest to recover lost words

Jermain Memorial Library Photo