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Ghosts of the Past

Certainly there are some very old inns left in the Hamptons, but have you ever wondered about the hotels that used to be there? Fire seems to have been the main enemy of these antique hostelries.

Apaquogue Hotel
72 Apaquogue Road, East Hampton
Abraham Candy (1801-1880) settled in East Hampton about 1829 and was a teacher (and sometime principal) of Clinton Academy. He was also a farmer. In the mid-nineteenth century Abraham Candy began accepting summer boarders at his farm on Apaquogue Road. Candy's property was acquired after his death by E.A. LaForest in 1882, but the boarding house burned in the fall of that year. In 1884, the LaForests opened the Apaquogue on the same site, a boarding house with 22 guest rooms. The Apaquogue continued as a hotel until 1912; it was later adapted as a summer home, which it still is today. Abraham Candy is buried in South End Cemetery.

The Sea Spray
East of Ocean Avenue , East Hampton
The Sea Spray Inn was originally on Main Street; the house was moved to the dunes in 1902. It opened in 1888 as a boardinghouse and was popular with artists. In 1978, the Sea Spray burned down. The cottages remain; they belong to East Hampton town and are rented out via lottery.

The Irving
Corner of Hill Street and First Neck Lane, Southampton
Built as a hotel in 1889 and burned to the ground in 1960. It began as a twelve-room boardinghouse and eventually was enlarged to have 150 rooms. Roosevelts, Vanderbilts, du Ponts, and Kennedys all stayed there.

Sea View Hotel
Indian Wells Highway, Amagansett
Built in 1898, burned down in 1924.

Montauk Inn
Signal Hill, Montauk
In 1899 the Long Island Rail Road, expecting Montauk to become a deepwater port, built the Montauk Inn for $40,000. Mr. and Mrs. Theodore Conklin, who lived at Third House, left there and ran the inn until 1925, when Carl Fisher's Montauk Beach Development Company bought the inn. The inn burned down in 1926, and the Montauk Manor was built on almost the same spot.

The Maidstone Inn
Maidstone Lane, East Hampton
The Maidstone Inn, a three-story Shingle-Style building designed by I.W. Green Jr., was East Hampton's first large hotel. It was built next to the Maidstone Club in 1901. It burned down in January 1935.

Commercial Hotel
Main Street, Southampton
That's all we know: the location. Please email us if you have more information.

Hampton Manor
Northwest corner of Main Street and Nugent Street, Southampton
Its restaurant was a popular gathering spot for the local community as well as summer visitors. In the 1950s the main part of the building was demolished to make way for the shopping center that occupies the corner today. A wing was preserved and moved on skids, an operation that took three days and required the cutting of phone and electric cables in its path. It survives on Hampton Road about a mile east of its original site. (Thanks to Mary Cummings of the Southampton Historical Society for this information.)

Wyandanee Inn
By the Point (Turtle Cove), Montauk
There were several inns and restaurants in Montauk called Wyandanee or Wyandanch or Wyandank. The first was the Wyandank restaurant by the Point, which was run by Knowles and Hilda Smith (old family friends of this writer) starting in 1918. It burned down in 1924. The Smiths then started the Wyandanch, now the Surfside Inn, on Old Montauk Highway. In 1926, the Smiths opened the Wyandanee, also by the Point. The Wyandanee, which operated during Prohibition, had the largest basement on the East End, and became a haven for bootleggers. Mary Smith, their daughter, described hiding booze in a car with a false bottom and shipping it up-island as a teenager.

Tam O'Shanter
300 Montauk Highway, Southampton.
Now the Hampton Hamlet Inn.

Bill's Inn
Edgemere Road, Montauk
Formerly owned by Cliff and Rita Stanley, Bill's, which called itself Montauk's most popular dining place, was moved over by Fort Pond and is now East by Northeast.