YELLOW WOOD ROAD
In the early 1900's there were automobile racetracks made out of wood, many of these board tracks were located in the Brooklyn and Queens area. They would last only three or four years at best and most were not rebuilt with wood because of the maintenence. There was also a portion of Merrick Rd. aka Montauk Highway in Queens around Springfield Gardens and Lawrence paved with wood. In fact at one time it bore the name of Plank Road. A recent diary of one Irma Newey of Brookhaven discovered by Marty Van Lith tells the tale of another wood road much closer to home.
JUNE 11, 1904
"Mr. Wm Smith took me driving down to Dr. Robert's place Mactic (sic) through the most lovely wood road I ever was on. The wood was nearly as hard and smooth as a wooden floor and all along the edges of it were high oak trees".......
WOW WHO WOOD OF THUNK IT!
A Wooden Road In Our Little Future Town. The 1906 map below shows that road. Back then it was known as the "Neighborhood Trail" Today we know that portion of it that led to the Manor Of St. George from the town as Commack Road (the left fork at the Triangle heading west). Just how far from the Smith's Estate into the town was paved in wood is anyones guess. Mine is it probably went to the Smiths property eastern border where the Robert land began. Mastic Beach old timers wrote of a wooden gate being on that road back into the 1930's We will probably never know unless a photo of it or another written account turns turns up.
NOW WOODEN THAT BE NICE?
A STRANGE MAP OF THAT TIME THAT COMBINES BOTH NAUTICAL CHARTS & PROPERTY OWNER INFO
The Dr. Robert they went to visit that day in 1904 was Dr. Charles S. Robert who lived in the place we knew as the Bayview Hospital. What's that red checkmark for you ask? Why that's the location of Frank M. Lawrence's residence for his new bride Louise making it's first map appearence. Ten years after this map was made the Lawrences moved to Providence, Rhode Island and the checkmarked place had name and new owners__The Knapp Mansion_ Residence of sister and brother Claire A. and Joseph F. Knapp.