Virtual Lecture Series

2021 Virtual Lecture Series Brings Renowned Speakers to Living Rooms Near and Far

The Three Village Historical Society lecture series hosts prominent and emerging historians, authors, genealogists, archeologists and storytellers from around the nation and presents topics related to local history, heritage conservation, social justice, art history, and more.  For decades, TVHS public programming has provided a stimulating environment for the exploration of history and ideas that permeate the culture and community of the Three Village area, and beyond.

In early 2020, when the world went on “lock-down”, TVHS shifted gears and began hosting this treasured event virtually via Zoom on a monthly basis and the Society will continue to do so for 2021. Unless otherwise noted, all lectures begin at 7:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time and will be held on Zoom and moderated by Mari Irizarry, TVHS Creative Services Director.  The Virtual Lecture Series is open to public, with a $5 general admission suggested donation and is free for TVHS members, though registration is required.

Creation of a Campus: An Early and Architectural History of Stony Brook University

Monday, April 19th, 2021 - 7pm

Beginning in the 1940s, comprehensive planning by the State University of New York (SUNY) transformed public higher education and created new educational opportunities across the state. Long Island was identified as a geographic region in need of colleges and universities to serve the growing population of the region. Stony Brook was selected as the site for the only university in the SUNY system to begin de novo - to be established on undeveloped land. In just a few decades, woodlands were dramatically transformed into a major research institution. Kristen Nyitray will discuss this history with archival photographs, maps, and documents to illustrate the early years of Stony Brook University, with an emphasis on construction and architecture through 1980. 

With Author and Archivist

Kristen Nyitray

Exploring Long Island's Jewish History

Monday, July 19th, 2021 - 7pm

Jewish life on Long Island reflects the transition from an agricultural region to the suburban dream. The research reflects the roles of peddlers, local businesses, synagogues, social organization, individuals and families. 


This presentation will take the reader through the historical changes on Long Island through use of genealogical material, such as draft registrations, census, and records from the National Jewish Welfare Board. Jewish Community of Long Island shows how genealogical research can augment historical data to create a richer narrative.

With Author and Genealogist

Rhoda Miller

The Devil in New York: The Withcraft Trial of Goody Garlick

Monday, October 18th, 2021 - 7pm

The most famous American witch-hunt began in 1692 in Salem, Massachusetts. Yet, more than three decades before that notorious event, Long Island had its very own witchcraft trial – the trial of Goody Garlick! Accusations of flying on poles and cavorting with the Devil ran rampant in the colonies during the 17th century and led to hundreds of accusations of witchcraft. To understand what happened during these trials, we must first understand the stresses of ordinary 17th century life in New York and why the fear of witches existed. The trial of Goody Garlick will act as a lens to understand the hysteria associated with these accusations.

With Lecturer

Tara Rider

Culper Spy Ring and Long Island Revolutionary War Sites: "George Washington’s Long Island Spy Ring: A History and Tour Guide."

Monday, May 17th, 2021 - 7pm

Join Pulitzer prize winning journalist as he discusses the true story of the successful Culper Spy Ring that helped to win the Revolutionary War and George Washington’s earlier attempts at gathering intelligence including Nathan Hale as detailed in his newly released  book “George Washington’s Long Island Spy Ring: A History and Tour Guide.” (The History Press, 2021)

With Author 

Bill Bleyer

Jupiter Hammon Project: Confronting Slavery at Preservation Long Island's Joseph Lloyd Manor

Monday, August 16th, 2021 - 7pm

The presentation outlines the development, execution, and findings of Preservation Long Island's three virtual roundtables which took place from August to October in 2019. The project strove to derive an appropriate direction for the reinterpretation of the Joseph Lloyd Manor to encourage responsible, rigorous, and relevant encounters with Jupiter Hammon’s story. 

With Preservation Long Island

Darren St. George

Green-Wood Cemetery’s Civil War Project

Monday, November 15th, 2021 - 7pm

In August of 2002, The Green-Wood Historic Fund rededicated New York City’s Civil War Soldiers’ Monument after a year of restoration. It was originally dedicated in 1876 on the Cemetery’s Battle Hill. The Historic Fund’s Civil War Project, an effort to identify and remember Civil War veterans buried at Green-Wood, was born of the enthusiasm felt at the rededication ceremony.

With Author and Historian

Jeff Richman

 Long Island’s Vanished Heiress: The Unsolved Alice Parsons Kidnapping 

Monday, June 21st, 2021 - 7pm

 Alice McDonell Parsons was the heir to a vast fortune among Long Island’s wealthy elite when she was kidnapped from her Long Meadow Farm in Stony Brook in 1937. The crime shocked the nation and was front-page news for several months. J. Edgar Hoover assigned his top FBI agents to the investigation and within a short time, Parson’s husband and their line-in Russian housekeeper, Anna Kupryanova, had become suspects. Botched ransom attempts, clashes between authorities and romantic intrigue kept the investigation mired in drama. The crime remained unsolved and has captivated Long Island Audiences ever since. The author, former Suffolk County detective Steven C. Drielak, reveals new information from previously classified FBI document and pieces together the mystery of the Alice Parsons kidnaping. 

With Author 

Steven C. Drielak

A Struggle For Heritage:  Archaeology and Civil Rights in Long Island Community

Monday, September 20th, 2021 - 7pm

Based on ten years of collaborative, community-based research, this book examines race and racism in a mixed-heritage Native American and African American community on Long Island's north shore. Through excavations of the Silas Tobias and Jacob and Hannah Hart houses in the village of Setauket, Christopher Matthews explores how the families who lived here struggled to survive and preserve their culture despite consistent efforts to marginalize and displace them over the course of more than 200 years. He discusses these forgotten people and the artifacts of their daily lives within the larger context of race, labor, and industrialization from the early nineteenth to the mid-twentieth century.

A Struggle for Heritage draws on extensive archaeological, archival, and oral historical research and sets a remarkable standard for projects that engage a descendant community left out of the dominant narrative. Matthews demonstrates how archaeology can be an activist voice for a vulnerable population's civil rights as he brings attention to the continuous, gradual, and effective economic assault on people of color living in a traditional neighborhood amid gentrification. Providing examples of multiple approaches to documenting hidden histories and silenced pasts, this study is a model for public and professional efforts to include and support the preservation of historic communities of color.

With Archaeologist 

Christopher Matthews

While our doors remain closed, your support means more to us than ever.  Please consider making a gift today to help us continue our mission of sharing and preserving Long Island's history with our community.



Currently Closed due to COVID-19 



Currently Closed due to COVID-19




93 N. Country Road

Setauket, NY 11733

Tel: 631-751-3730


Special thanks to our 2021 Printing Sponsor!

Copyright © 2021 Three Village Historical Society

  • Facebook Basic Black
  • Twitter Basic Black
  • YouTube - Black Circle
  • Black Instagram Icon