Long Island proms of the past: 1960s

+-

Dust off your Rat Pack-style tuxedo or that chiffon dress with the draped sash. It's time to travel back in time to attend Long Island proms of the 1960s. Explore the eccentric fashion, some unusual themes and the nostalgic moments from local high school proms that took place between 1960-69. Want to submit your vintage LI prom photos? Send them to rachel.weiss@newsday.com or josh.stewart@newsday.com.

Wearing crowns and capes fit for royalty, the
(Credit: Merrick Public Library)

Wearing crowns and capes fit for royalty, the prom king and queen of the Class of 1960 at Wellington C. Mepham High School in Bellmore reign over the affair.

The 1960 prom king and queen of W.
(Credit: East Meadow Public Library)

The 1960 prom king and queen of W. Tresper Clarke High School in Westbury pose with their impressive crowns.

The prom for Class of 1960 at W.
(Credit: East Meadow Public Library)

The prom for Class of 1960 at W. Tresper Clarke High School in Westbury appeared to be a patriotic one as students spent the night celebrating under stars and stripes.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISE HERE
Seniors at Islip High School take the slow
Buy photo
(Credit: Newsday / Jim Cavanagh)

Seniors at Islip High School take the slow train to Montauk on the Long Island Rail Road for their prom on June 23 and 24, 1961. Here, kids sing to the music as they wait in line at the bar for hot dogs, hamburgers and sodas.

Seniors at Islip High School take the slow
Buy photo
(Credit: Newsday / Jim Cavanagh)

Seniors at Islip High School take the slow train to Montauk on the Long Island Rail Road for their prom on June 23 and 24, 1961. The kids danced all night long to a rock 'n roll band in a baggage car and to an electric organ in the bar car. The rock 'n rollers where doing what they called the "Railroad Rock."

Seniors at Islip High School take the slow
Buy photo
(Credit: Newsday/ Jim Cavanagh)

Seniors at Islip High School take the slow train to Montauk on the LIRR for their prom on June 23-24, 1961. When the train pulled into Montauk, the kids made use of the pool at the Montauk Surf and Cabana for a dawn dip.

Seniors at Islip High School take the slow
Buy photo
(Credit: Newsday/ Jim Cavanagh)

Seniors at Islip High School take the slow train to Montauk on the LIRR for their prom on June 23-24, 1961. As the All Night Party on Wheels made its way back to Islip, many of the kids slept as best they could in the seats.

Seniors at Islip High School take the slow
Buy photo
(Credit: Newsday/ Jim Cavanagh)

Seniors at Islip High School take the slow train to Montauk on the LIRR for their prom on June 23-24, 1961. Here, Seniors Gayle Cherveny, Ellen School and Eddie Surbeck look out from the rear of the train as it leaves Montauk on its way back to Islip.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISE HERE
Seniors at Islip High School take the slow
Buy photo
(Credit: Newsday/ Jim Cavanagh)

Seniors at Islip High School take the slow train to Montauk on the LIRR for their prom on June 23-24, 1961. Here, two members of the party (Gerry Slavik and Larry Yaeger) take time out for a stroll along the beach in Montauk.

Tired seniors from Islip High School disboard the
Buy photo
(Credit: Newsday/ Jim Cavanagh)

Tired seniors from Islip High School disboard the train after partying all night on the slow train to Montauk on the LIRR for their prom on June 23-24, 1961.

Kids from Islip High School dance to rock
Buy photo
(Credit: Newsday/ Jim Cavanagh)

Kids from Islip High School dance to rock and roll music on the baggage car of an LIRR train as part of their "Rolling Prom" on June 24, 1961. A local businessman came up with the idea to hold the prom aboard a train bound from Islip to Montauk, and a donor paid the $3,700 Lloyds of London insurance for the 12 mph trip.

Couples dance in formal fashion while attending the
(Credit: Freeport Public Schools)

Couples dance in formal fashion while attending the 1960 Freeport High School senior prom.

White tuxedos were the choice of garb for
(Credit: Valley Stream Central High School District)

White tuxedos were the choice of garb for these gentlemen, sitting with fellow students at the 1962 Valley Stream Central High School Senior Prom.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISE HERE
Susan Amrhein and Russ Mulroy get ready to
(Credit: Provided by Russ Mulroy)

Susan Amrhein and Russ Mulroy get ready to leave for the Levittown Memorial High School senior prom at the Huntington Townhouse in May 1961.

Islip High School students dance to rock and
Buy photo
(Credit: Jim Cavanagh)

Islip High School students dance to rock and roll music on the baggage car of a Long Island Rail Road train during their "Rolling Prom" on June 24, 1961. A local businessman came up with the idea to hold the prom aboard a train bound from Islip to Montauk, and a donor paid the $3,700 Lloyds of London insurance for the 12 mph trip.

Long gowns with modest necklines and white gloves
(Credit: Seaford Public Library)

Long gowns with modest necklines and white gloves were the attire of choice for the ladies in the royal court at Seaford High School's junior prom for the Class of 1966.

Mary Ellen Sullivan was crowned queen of Huntington
(Credit: Huntington High School)

Mary Ellen Sullivan was crowned queen of Huntington High School's 1967 Christmas prom.

In 1967, Huntington High School had a very
(Credit: Huntington High School)

In 1967, Huntington High School had a very jolly prom tradition -- Christmas prom, held during the holiday season. Santa even made an appearance and took a picture with some of the prom royalty.

Couples grabbing drinks at a fountain smile for
(Credit: Seaford Union Free School District)

Couples grabbing drinks at a fountain smile for the camera while attending the 1964 Seaford High School Junior Prom.

Big smiles are flashing all around at the
(Credit: Patchogue-Medford Union Free School District)

Big smiles are flashing all around at the Patchogue-Medford High School Class of 1963's senior prom.

East Islip High School's 1967 senior ball was
(Credit: East Islip Public Library)

East Islip High School's 1967 senior ball was "for most couples ... just the beginning of a very wonderful and memorable evening," according to the class yearbook.

A musical group called
(Credit: Oceanside Public Library)

A musical group called "The Genies" provided the entertainment at the junior prom for Oceanside High School's Class of 1961.

We can only imagine how many cans of
(Credit: East Islip Public Library)

We can only imagine how many cans of Aqua Net hair spray were used to create these beehives at East Islip High School's 1966 senior ball.

Farmingdale High School's Class of 1963 celebrated its
(Credit: Farmingdale Public Library)

Farmingdale High School's Class of 1963 celebrated its junior prom in the "deep South" on the "pre-Civil War plantation of Tara," according to their yearbook. Undoubtedly the theme was borrowed from the classic book and movie, "Gone with the Wind," and Lynn Gilmore (center), dressed like a Southern belle, was crowned prom queen.

The entertainment for Hampton Bays High School's 1963
(Credit: Hampton Bays Public Library)

The entertainment for Hampton Bays High School's 1963 junior prom consisted of a drummer, a guy on a guitar and a woman playing an upright piano.

Chivalry was not dead in 1961, as two
(Credit: Oceanside Public Library)

Chivalry was not dead in 1961, as two Oceanside High School students tend to their dates at the senior ball.

Oceanside High School students entered their junior prom
(Credit: Oceanside Public Library)

Oceanside High School students entered their junior prom in 1960, held inside the school's gymnasium, through giant cutouts of snow people.

Oh, and how did students go about raising
(Credit: Farmingdale Public Library)

Oh, and how did students go about raising funds for their prom? Well, Farmingdale High School's Class of 1965 sponsored the annual donkey basketball game. Yes, those are students inside the school's gymnasium playing basketball while riding donkeys. And they weren't the only ones. This was also a popular tradition at Port Washington's Paul D. Schreiber High School as evidenced by photos and a brief recap in the school's 1971 yearbook. (That year, the teachers won.)

Guests entering the 1961 Massapequa High School Junior
(Credit: Massapequa Union Free School District)

Guests entering the 1961 Massapequa High School Junior Prom were greeting by hostesses dressed in nautically-inspired outfits, as the evening's theme was "Ebb Tide."

Couples danced under a
(Credit: Port Washington Public Library)

Couples danced under a "glowing autumn sunset, as shadows of a nocturnal landscape were projected over rolling fields" inside Paul D. Schreiber High School's gymnasium in Port Washington for the Class of 1964's senior ball, according to the class yearbook. The theme was "Golden Harvest."

A candid photo captured couples slow-dancing during the
(Credit: Levittown Public School District)

A candid photo captured couples slow-dancing during the Levittown Memorial High School Class of 1960's junior prom.

Get the Newsday Now newsletter!

The best of Newsday every day in your inbox.

Sign up

By clicking Sign up, you agree to our privacy policy.

Related Media

In 1979, the theme of the North Babylon Long Island prom rewind, the 1970s Michelle Aranow and Robert Keenan attend the Sachem LI prom rewind: 40 photos from the 1980s A student sparkles in a glittery pink halter-neck 59 unforgettable LI prom photos from the 1990s

Comments

Newsday.com now uses Facebook for our comment boards. Please read our guidelines and connect your Facebook account to comment.

By using this site, you agree to our Privacy policy.

OK
Sorry to interrupt...

Your first 5 are free

Access to Newsday is free for Optimum customers.

Please enjoy 5 complimentary views to articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.

LOGIN SUBSCRIBE