Cherry Grove History

Photo’s supplied from Cherry Grove Archives.

       Perkinson Hotel

postcard from the 20'sy

Cherry Grove has been settled for almost 150 years. Cherry Grove dates its modern history to the 1868 purchase by Archer and Elizabeth Perkinson. They bought the land between Lone Hill (now Fire Island Pines) and the Cherry Grove Hotel from the ocean to the bay for 25 cents per acre and named the area for the black-cherry trees in the area. The Perkinsons opened a hotel in 1880. According to local legend Oscar Wilde stayed at the Perkinson Hotel

postcard early. d JPG







CG 1920S


postcard early


1930s grove

The first boardwalks were built in 1929. In 1930 Duffy’s Hotel replaced the original hotel and was the only place with electricity and a phone. “Many people had tried their hands at running the hotel after the Perkinson Family gave it up. The Fred Steins (parents of the present owner of our ferries), the Joseph Levys (parents of Ira Levy, Sayville attorney), the Alfred Sykes family, who later operated the Kensington Hotel in Sayville, which was on the site of the old Bohack store, and, just before the hurricane, by the Duffy’s, who had also taken over the Kensington in Sayville.  After the hurricane, Mr. Duffy sold the hotel to Arnold Stevens.



CG 1929


The Great Hurricane of 1938 destroyed much of Cherry Grove and discouraged mainlanders from coming. In their stead a new generation started coming from Manhattan including Greta Garbo, Xavier Cugat, Paulette Goddard, Pola Negri, Arlene Francis, and Earl Blackwell (publisher of the International Celebrity Register).

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Included in that new generation were the growing gay population.

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Duffys hotel Cherry Grove pre 1956










More and more men were finding Cherry Grove as well as people from the Arts. From the many from the arts came the theater culture that remains today.

GRove 1950's


Pat’s Ocean View Restaurant. Below owner Patricia Stephani.


Pats Ocean View restaurant owner Patricia Stephani 50's Cherry Grove

Buildings are brought over by boat.


barber shop grove








cherry grove archives




cherry grove hotel 1955










 The theater became the center of Cherry Grove culture. Notice Pines Yacht club owner and former Ziegfeld girl Peggy Fears in the cast.

1948 Follies cherry grove with Peggy Fears


The 1950’s brought the theme parties as many had to entertain in homes to feel freedom.


Cherry Grove hotel fire news 1956.web

Duffy’s burned on September 27, 1956. In 1957 construction begins on the Cherry Grove hotel in November and completed in July.











         With it’s inspiration coming from Florida architecture, and designed by Carl Stoyle the 64 room hotel begins to take shape at a cost of $250,000. Now owned by a corporation and managed by Arnold Stevens it offers guests the use of its bar/restaurant, dance hall, free docking facilities, music and writing rooms, coffee shop, and a swimming pool which is built the following year at a cost of $20,000.

cherry grove hotel 1968web









cherry grove hotel 195o's


50's grove

    1959. Postcard greetings from Cherry Grove…

postcard 1959 a



postcard 1959 b


postcard 1959 c

 postcard 1959 d

 The 1960’s arrive bringing many to this new resort.                                                                                                                                                 60's grove



 1962 ICE PALACE cherry grove









cherry grove arial 1962




















 The hotel pool is the centerpiece of the resort.






Johnny 1960's fashion show. 

  Beginning his career at the Sea  Shack bartender Johnny Pool  moves onto the Ice Palace as it is now named with a Fashion show at  the pool.

sea shack cherry groveweb


Sea Shack 1971


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1962 cherry grove




1960 cg




And the parties continued…














 To be continued….