Senator Kemp Hannon
6th District New York
Introduction to Hempstead

Hempstead gained its reputation as “The Hub” as a result of its central role in the lives of Long Islanders. As the oldest community in Nassau, it became the pivotal location for all public transportation, and the ultimate location for shoppers. The community sprang up on this location because the first English settlers were able to first establish the area because nearby converging streams created fertile land and accessible water. The location of the settlement now houses St. George’s Church facing Front Street.

A convention was called in Hempstead during 1665 in order to write a new code of law under the new governor Richard Nicolls. During the Revolution, Hempstead residents strongly protested “taxation without representation”. This sentiment was emphasized when the convention was not to rewrite law, but to sign the duke’s previously established law.

It is of interest that although the Village had its own volunteer fire department since 1832, any male who refused to assist in putting out a fire would incur a fine of $3. During the late 1800's and early 1900's, the Village of Hempstead served as a summer home for many of America’s affluent. Some notables include August Belmont, Arthur Brisbane, Elliott Roosevelt (father of future first lady Eleanor), and William K. Vanderbilt II.

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