Nassau County Town Profiles

Nassau County Hospitals

North Hempstead Town

Supervisor: May Newburger, 516-869-7700.
Town Board: Doreen Banks, 516-747-0680; Anthony DUrso, 516-869-7692; Angelo P. Ferrara, 516-869-7697; James OConnor, 516-869-7696.
Comptroller: Michael Locorriere, 516-869-7765.
Receiver of Taxes: Ann M. Galante, 516-869-7800.
Town Attorney: Howard Miller, 516-869-7600.
Town Clerk: Michelle Schimel, 516-869-7646.

Buildings: David Wasserman, Commissioner; 516-869-7679.
Highways: Thomas Tiernan, Superintendent; 516-739-6708.
Parks and Recreation: Gerard R. Olsen, Commissioner; 516-327-3110.
Public Works: Matt Miner, Commissioner; 516-739-6711.
Finance Department: Helene Raps-Beckerman; 516-869-7741.

Animal Shelter: 516-944-8220.
Public Safety: 516-739-2345.
Community Services: 516-869-7718.
Planning and Economic Development: 516-869-7753.
Police: Nassau 6th Precinct (northwestern part), 516-573-6600; 3rd Precinct (southern part), 516-573-6300.
Village police in Floral Park (northern tip), 516-326-6400; Great Neck Estates, 516-487-7700; Kensington, 516-482-0480; Kings Point, 516-482-1000; Lake Success, 516-482-4600; Old Westbury (southwestern part), 516-626-0200; Port Washington, 516-883-0500; Sands Point, 516-883-3100.
Public Affairs: 516-869-7710.
Recycling: 516-767-4600.
Solid Waste: 516-767-4608.
Seniors: 516-869-7718.
Lighting: 516-739-6710.
Zoning Board: 516-869-7668.

History and Facts

A major role-player in Long Island's Gold Coast days of lavish living by the wealthy, North Hempstead owes its origins to more plebeian instincts - a revolutionary fervor in pre-Revolutionary days.

North Hempstead was part of the town of Hempstead then. The tract bought from the Indians for Hempstead's first 30 settlers in 1643 stretched from Long Island Sound to the sea, and for more than a century north and south Hempstead shared a slow progress.

But when rebel fever began to spread in the 1770s, sentiments in the north clearly favored independence. As a result, when the British occupied the town, northern Hempstead residents suffered far more than the Tory-leaning southerners. Division was inevitable; after the war, in 1783, the legislature approved North Hempstead township.

George Washington paused in Roslyn on his 1790 tour of Long Island to express his gratitude to the fledgling town. We were kindly received and well entertained, he noted in his diary. He stayed at the home of mill-owner Henry Onderdonk, whose paper mills produced the first American-manufactured paper used for U.S. currency.

In the 19th Century North Hempstead gained another distinction: It became the seat of Queens County, which then included Hempstead, North Hempstead and Oyster Bay. Not until the end of the century, when New York City boundaries were drawn to include the western third of Queens, did the eastern towns move to form Nassau County.

Meanwhile, North Hempstead was growing steadily. Steamboat service to the city began in 1836. Clamming and oystering were major enterprises by mid-century. The LIRR opened stations at Hempstead (now Mineola) and, later, Roslyn and on the Port Washington line.

By the turn of the century, wealthy city-dwellers had begun recognizing the natural beauty of the North Shore, now more easily accessible. They bought up huge tracts of farmland and began building their great Gold Coast estates. Among the millionaire settlers here were Vanderbilts and Whitneys, Goulds and Guggenheims, Pratts and Morgans. The Roaring Twenties roared no louder anywhere else than here; estates to rival the splendor of Europe entertained with abandon. Great writers of the day arrived, too: Sinclair Lewis, F. Scott Fitsgerald, Ring Lardner and more.

Meanwhile, North Hempstead's population had been growing rapidly - thanks in large part to extension and electrification of LIRR lines. Commuting became a realistic option for thousands of New Yorkers. By 1930 North Hempstead's population had nearly quintupled from 1900, and many new communities were formed. When the Gold Coast era began to unravel amid the economic woes of the Thirties, more land was sold to developers and population growth continued. In an effort to preserve their character, many of the communities incorporated as villages, 30 in all.

Many residents - the new commuter population - began to cluster along the highway and railroad routes. That population mushroomed anew in the postwar period. North Hempstead's agricultural character is now largely behind it, but the primary magnet remains: A plethora of fine residential communities across the North Shore, savoring a suburban pace close to the big city.

Vital Statistics

Area: 58 square miles, on Long Island Sound in northwestern Nassau.
Population: 211,393 (adjusted figure) (LIPA 1999 estimate 213,209).
Census Breakdown (1990):
White, 182,940 (80.6 percent);
Black, 14,082 (6.7 percent);
Asian, 11,357 (5.4 percent);
American Indian, 238 (0.1 percent);
other, 2,672 (1.3 percent).
Population of Hispanic origin, 12,373 (5.9 percent).

Median Age: 39. Median house value: $291,600.
Median family income: $68,631 (adjusted 1997 estimate $89,762).
Year round households: 74,587 (LIPA 1999 estimate 75,955).
Estimated average household size: 2.80 (LIPA 1999 estimate 2.78).
Residents over 25 with bachelor's degree: 39.8 percent.
Average Commute: 31 minutes.
Vehicles per household: 1.82.
Households with married-couple families: 67 percent.

Supervisor and 4 town board members. Town Hall: 220 Plandome Rd., Manhasset; 516-627-0590.

30, including Baxter Estates, East Williston, Flower Hill, Great Neck, Great Neck Estates, Great Neck Plaza, Kensington, Kings Point, Lake Success, Manorhaven, Munsey Park, North Hills, Plandome, Plandome Heights, Plandome Manor, Port Washington North, Roslyn, Roslyn Estates, Russell Gardens, Saddle Rock, Sands Point, Thomaston, Westbury, Williston Park and parts of East Hills, Floral Park, Garden City, New Hyde Park, Old Westbury, and Roslyn Harbor.

Board meets approximately twice a month on Tuesdays, at 7:30 p.m. Zoning Board meets twice monthly, usually at 9:30 a.m.Statistical information in these listings is derived from U.S. census data for 1990. Population figures have been adjusted, where noted, to reflect corrections made by the Census Bureau and the Long Island Regional Planning staff; census breakdown does not reflect this adjustment. The census figures for family income have been updated by the LI Regional Planning Board, based on the Consumer Price Index. The LIPA 1999 population estimates are derived by taking 1990 U.S. census figures and factoring in meter counts and demographic changes, as well as corrections by the Census Bureau and the LI Regional Planning Board. Median home and income figures are for year-round residents only, thus excluding many homeowners in the Hamptons and other areas who stay seasonally. Married-couple families include children over 18 as well as under 18.


This page was last updated March 27, 2001.