Historic and unforgettable Long Island street names
You won't have a care in the world while cruising down this street in West Sayville.
One would think that this forested East Hampton road has some spooky origins, but really, this road came to be on the whims of Dan's Papers publisher Dan Rattiner. As chronicled in his third memoir: "Still in the Hamptons, More Tales for the Rich, the Famous and the Rest of Us," Rattiner tells the story of his 1968 endeavor to draw a map of uncharted areas of East Hampton up to Montauk Point. In his travels, he discovered an abundance of unmarked "trustee roads," or dirt roads in the woods connected to main roads. For fun, Rattiner would name them on his map — giving them whimsical names like "Lois Lane" or "Lost Cow's Journey" and "Werewolf Path."
While the majority of those names didn't catch on in the community, Werewolf Path actually stuck, and now exists as a paved path off of Old Sag Harbor Road.
Scuttle Hole Road
"Memorials of old Bridgehampton," a 1916 book authored by James Truslow Adams, attributes the naming of this area to the legend of an old peddler who once broke his wagon after getting the wheels stuck in a hole. According to the tale, the peddler had to "scuttle" to get himself out of the mess, and only spoke ill of the place afterward.
Washington's Spy Trail
From Queens to Riverhead, Route 25a goes by a handful of different names -- Northern Boulevard, Jericho Turnpike, Fort Salonga Road, and even simply, Main Street in some places. But this North Shore road also has a historical nickname, "Washington's Spy Trail," named for the Culper Spy Ring patriots who would send intelligence to George Washington during the Revolutionary War.
Although its name might imply that this road has a self-esteem issue, in fact Weesuck Avenue in East Quogue takes its name from the nearby Weesuck Creek, a body of water once known by Native Americans as "Wesuck" or "Achabuchawesuck," which refers to its one-time recognition as a boundary (back when East Quogue was known as "Fourth Neck").
Idle Hour Boulevard
In the late 1800s, William Kissam Vanderbilt commissioned famed architect Richard Howland Hunt to build Idle Hour, a large estate used for hunting and recreation, on his property in Oakdale. The original structure burned down and was rebuilt in 1899. The estate now exists as part of Dowling College, but the road remains.
Skunks Misery Road
This North Shore road in Lattingtown shares its name with a slice of South Shore history. Before Malverne was incorporated in 1921, the area was made up of mostly farmland. Manure from the farms was shipped to the southern part of the town for disposal, creating a large field of waste. People who lived in the area were so disgusted by the smell of the manure pile that they referred to the area as "Skunk's Misery" because the odor was comparable to, if not worse than, a skunk's.
This colonial road is named in honor of Esther "Granny" Dickerson, a regional doctress. One story depicts Granny as a woman in a red cloak, riding on a white horse to visit patients in need. Another story tells of when Granny rode a half-broken colt to man's house in order to save him from bleeding to death.
Fish Thicket Road
Don't bring your fishing rod and bait down to Fish Thicket Road in East Patchogue. Contrary to what its name implies, there are no fishing spots here. The road is actually named after the Fish Thicket Land Preserve, more than 100 acres of bird and wildlife habitat, which is looked after by Patchogue-Medford High School students.
If you're trying to figure out how to get to Sesame Street, it turns out you won't have to go far. This quaint dead-end side street is located off Route 25A in Kings Park, right near the local high school. No reported sightings of Big Bird or Grover, though.
Black Gum Tree Lane
Streets named after trees are some of the most common road names in suburban America, according to a 2011 study done by real estate website Trulia.
But while we're typically used to seeing streets boasting names like Oak, Peach and Birch, Black Gum Tree Lane in Kings Park is a bit different from its other arbor-based species. The Black Gum tree grows primarily on the eastern coast, making this long-living hardwood a lesser-known piece of flora.
Quaker Meeting House Road
There are historic ties to the early days of Long Island behind the meandering Quaker Meeting House Road that runs through Farmingdale and Bethpage. It runs past the Quaker Meeting House, which was built in 1698 by the area's first settler Thomas Powell, who sought to create a refuge where he could practice his Quaker faith.
Hungry Harbor Road
The shoreline in the area that is now part of southwest Valley Stream was once called Hungry Harbor, a named coined from the abundance of hungry squatters who made that area their home. The area also hosted rich and fertile farmland, giving the name a double meaning.
Bread & Cheese Hollow Road
The name of this Northport road was inspired by the lore surrounding the founding of the Town of Smithtown.
Legend has it that in the mid-1600s, Richard "Bull" Smythe made a pact with local Native Americans that he could keep any land he circled in a day's time. So Smythe, being the clever man he was, chose the longest day of the year and climbed on his trusty bull Whisper to undertake the task. At around noon, Smythe stopped alongside the road to eat a meal of bread and cheese with his bull, inspiring the name of the road.
The tale is purely fiction, placing Smythe in the ranks of other legendary folklore heroes like Paul Bunyan and Johnny Appleseed. Truth be told, Smythe acquired the land that is now Smithtown in the aftermath of a peace agreement between Lyon Gardiner and the Wyandanch Indians in 1663.
But even if it's bull, Smithtown still embraces the tale. In the 1940s a statue of Whisper the Bull was erected at the intersection of Route 25 and 25A in Smithtown, where it still stands.
Wolf Hill Road
In colonial times, this stretch of road in Huntington was occupied by a pack of wolves that made their home on top of a pile of rocks along the path. According to an article published by the LI Forum in 1960, the wolves would frequently attack local farmers and their cattle, prompting an organized attack on the wolf pack to clear them out of the area.
Whooping Hollow Road
There are several legends surrounding the origin of this road, which is named for Whooping Boy's Hollow, a low area of land off the Sag Harbor-East Hampton Turnpike. One legend claims the area was named after a boy who escaped from an Indian attack by yelling loudly as he ran along the hollow, causing the Indians to give up their pursuit.
Another more sinister version claims the shrieking child was murdered, with his ghost haunting passersby as they traveled along the then-unpaved and lonely road.
Though the exact origin of this cross street in Stony Brook remains unknown, the two traffic signals hanging across the intersection are a pretty telling sign, or a fitting addition. The stop is one of the first and only traffic signals travelers will hit while driving down Christian Avenue, a typically quiet side street between Route 25A and West Meadow Beach.
Kings Point Village has long been suspected as the setting for the classic F. Scott Fitzgerald novel, "The Great Gatsby," which certainly inspired the ritzy name for this byway. When Great Neck native and real estate developer Stuart Hayim was working on a division of properties in the area through the 1980s, he chose the name to pay homage to the 1920s novel. According to a 2013 article in The New York Times, Gatsby-related property names convey a sense of wealth and glamour, making the theme popular among developers looking to court high-end clientele.
Who is this 'Guy?'
If you follow Guy Lombardo Avenue down from Merrick Road in Freeport, you'll find yourself at the start of the Nautical Mile -- a popular hot spot known for its restaurants, live music scene and bustling nightlife.
In the 1950s, Freeport was home to famed musician Guy Lombardo, who often performed at the newly built Jones Beach Marine Theater (now known as Nikon Theater at Jones Beach). Lombardo also owned a seafood restaurant on the Nautical Mile strip, and was a successful speedboat racer -- making his Freeport residence a fitting choice.
The baseball section
Ruth Boulevard, Gehrig Street, Cobb Lane and Vance Street are all team players in what is known among Long Island realty circles as the "baseball section" of Commack. Ruth Boulevard (named after Yankee great Babe Ruth) serves as the main vein in this suburban neighborhood dedicated to baseball greats, with Gehrig as its major cross street.
Along with Cobb Lane (named after Ty Cobb of the Detroit Tigers) and Vance Street (after Dazzy Vance), you can also find streets named after Carl Hubbell, Paul Waner and Mel Ott of the New York Giants.
Harding and Kerrigan Roads
These roads in Copiague are reminiscent of an infamous Olympic incident from 1994. Although the roads are not named after the figure skaters -- Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan -- this intersection is picture-perfect. Newsday reports that Harding Road may derive from President Warren G. Harding's name, while Kerrigan Road's roots are unknown. Long Islanders living in the area have embraced the hilarious coincidence.
Mark Twain Lane
"Take any road you please," said American writer Mark Twain. Twain was the pen name of Samuel Langhorne Clemens, who might be surprised to find this road named after him in Setauket-East Setauket.
It's a good bet that Kriss Kringle has no problem finding Claus Avenue in Riverhead, a small local road with a big, holiday-friendly name.
This sweet section of Commack serves up a number of routes named after coveted confections. Caramel Road intersects with Candy Lane and Marshmallow Drive, which leads into a curvy Peppermint Road. Directions around this neighborhood could pose the question: Are they directions or dessert?
In Central Islip, there's a whole bunch of fruit-inspired street names. In addition to Banana, you'll find Peach, Pear, Apple, Orange and West Plum streets, all in the same neighborhood.
For some in Dix Hills, this beloved snack has become home.
Some open a bottle of Chardonnay. Here in East Quogue, they live there.
While Gin Beach is in Montauk, Gin Road is a short drive from Cooper's Beach in Southampton.
Legend has it that jars of whiskey were placed in certain areas along the proposed road as a reward for the slaves who were working on the road. But where those jugs were planted wasn't exactly well-planned. Each time a new jug was placed as a marker for the trail the path changed directions, resulting in a crooked, uneven path.
In Levittown, this complex shoots for the stars with its choice in street names. In addition to Jupiter Lane...
Astronomy Lane and Constellation Road
...You could live on Astronomy Lane or Constellation Road ...
...Or Universe Drive...
Satellite Lane and Meridian Road
...or Satellite Lane and Meridian Road. Other contenders in this Levittown complex include: Neptune Lane, Comet Lane, Solar Lane, Celestial Lane, Horizon Lane and Compass Lane.
Winter Way, Spring Lane and Seasons Lane
You can walk along the four seasons in this Southampton neighborhood near Sunrise Highway. The area is home to Seasons Lane, Winter Way, Spring Lane, Fall Court and Summer Drive.
Ivy League Lane, Fraternity Lane and Freshman Lane
You don't have to go through rush week to live in this Stony Brook neighborhood. Fraternity Lane, Ivy League Lane and Freshman Lane can be found moments away from Stony Brook University's campus, along with Sophomore Lane and College Lane.
Walk along fabled roads such as Storyland Road and Cinderella Lane in St. James. Street names in this section are named after fairy tales and mythical legends including King Arthur's Court, Camelot Lane, Lancelot Court and Fable Road.
Blink and you might miss Princess Gate in Oakdale: a narrow path filled with homes reminiscent of classic fairytale cottages. There is also a Princess Gate located in Stony Brook, located right off Mill Pond Road.
The Storybook Section
If you are still waiting for your prince to come, you may find him waiting at the corner of Prince Charming Road and Galahad Lane in Nesconset. This section of the community, off Gibbs Pond Road, has streets inspired by classic stories and fables including Robin Hood Court, Canterbury Lane, Excalibur Lane and Guinevere Lane.
Merlin Lane and Storyland Lane
There's a tale of wizardry waiting to be told at the corner of Merlin and Storyland lanes in Stony Brook. Maybe Merlin got his degree from the nearby Stony Brook University...
Enchanted Forest and Ginger Bread Road
You might run into Hansel and Gretel frolicking near the corner of Enchanted Forest Road and Ginger Bread Road in Kings Park. While there's no trail of bread crumbs to tell where they went, Accompsett Middle School and Accompsett Elementary School are in walking distance.
Long Bow Lane, Fawn Lane East, Stillhunter Lane and Bear Lane
This residential area in South Setauket is fit for a hunter with street names like Long Bow Lane, Fawn Lane East, Stillhunter Lane, Bear Lane, Antler Lane, Elk Lane, Trapper Lane and Tracker Lane.
Camel Hollow Road
Camel Hollow Road is right off of West Neck Road in Huntington.
Have you ever seen a quail run? In East Islip, you can. Or at least, you can picture such a sight while walking down this road.
Wolf Swamp Lane
Though Wolf Swamp Lane in Southampton doesn't appear to be home to any swamps or wolves, it is only a quick walk from Big Fresh Pond.
Chicken Valley Road
The Brookville Country Club and Planting Fields Arboretum are both located along Chicken Valley Road in Glen Head. However, no chickens were spotted crossing the road when this photo was taken.
Just a swim off of Locust Avenue, there's certainly something fishy about this street in Oakdale...
Big Fresh Pond Road
This Southampton street name is nothing if not honest. Big Fresh Pond Road is home to -- you guessed it -- a big, fresh pond.
Springy Banks Road
Springy Banks Road is a winding street nestled in East Hampton. Werewolf Path isn't too far away, but this route seems cheerier.
Suffolk County is home to two Beaverdam Roads: One in Islip (pictured) and one in Brookhaven, off South Country Road.
You can take a walk down Memory Lane -- err, Memory Way -- on this Stony Brook street.
Wagon Lane East
Right off of Eastwood Boulevard in Centereach, Wagon Lane East is one of three Wagon Lanes surrounding Hunter Lane and Picket Lane. While there is a Wagon West and South, there is no Wagon Lane North.
Stirrup Lane and Saddle Lane
Despite the names of these Centereach streets off Eastwood Boulevard, you won't see any horses or hear the sound of hooves.
Wyoming Street and Nevada Street
In Selden, you'll find several streets named after states. Not pictured here but in the same neighborhood: Texas Street and Iowa Street.
Ballad Circle, Clarinet Lane and Flute Lane
There is a symphony of streets playing in Holbrook: Ballad Circle, Clarinet Lane and Flute Lane. Trumpet Lane can be found in the same neighborhood, as well.
Bugle Lane and Harp Lane
Venture down these musical streets next time you're in Sayville, just a few beats away from Broadway Avenue.
A stroll along this South Setauket street may have you singing Sinatra. "I did it my way..."
The bonus for Riverhead's Pirate Street? It's only two streets away from Treasure Road.
This holy road in Manhasset Hills, connects Queens Lane and Shelter Rock Road. Finding any salvation along its path is up to you.
It would have been a "pleasure" if these paths had actually criss-crossed. Oddly enough, the street separating Criss Street and Cross Street in Lake Ronkonkoma is Pleasure Avenue.
This lovely road in Huntington isn't too far away from Bittersweet Place.
This little lane in Oyster Bay is right off Cove Road. Bayport, Sayville and Rocky Point also have streets that are simply called The Lane.
Edelweiss Road and Foxglove Road
These roads may both be named after flowers, but only one of them will have you humming a beloved tune from "The Sound of Music" as you pass through West Islip.
Knickerbocker Avenue, located in Holbrook, is just moments away from the Ronkonkoma train station.
Druid Hill Road
If you are curious about the mysteries of Stonehenge, you might try seeking an answer on Druid Hill Road. This street is located in the quiet North Shore village of Belle Terre.
This secluded street in East Islip is bookended by Suffolk Lane and Bayview Avenue.
This street name is a bit out of place among Edgewater Road and Forest Avenue in Oakdale -- however, Miami Road is just a few blocks away.
This Rocky Point road's name has more to do with fauna than with a musical instrument of a similar name. In English, "xylo" is a prefix meaning "wood," derived from the Greek word "xulon" of the same meaning.
Bookended by the Great South Bay and the bustle of Montauk Highway, Handsome Avenue in Sayville certainly lives up to its name with plenty of lovely homes lining the road.
For the full experience while cruising down this road in Holbrook, look out for Danny Zuko and the rest of the T-Birds getting ready to race, or just play the Bruce Springsteen classic with your windows rolled down.
Surely, all the cool kids must hang out at Rebel Drive in Blue Point. This residential street is moments away from the excitement of Montauk Highway.
Just off of Dena Drive in Blue Point, the quirky Corky Court contains a cul-de-sac of homes and hides away from its conventionally named neighbors like Bell Avenue.
You won't have a care in the world while cruising down this street in West Sayville.
Toilsome Lane -- located in East Hampton -- just may be the exact opposite of Easy Street.