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Polish Immigration on Long Island

Essay by   •  February 28, 2011  •  Essay  •  1,103 Words (5 Pages)  •  1,629 Views

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Following the Puritan tradition of carving out a piece of the Hallock farm for male heirs of marrying age begun by his grandfather, Capt. Zachariah Hallock, Isaiah Hallock built a farmhouse on this spot around 1832. It burned to the ground in 1915.

In the mid 1920s Konstanty and Adela (Lipnicka) Cichanowicz (both born in Poland) bought the 35-acre farm consisting of the Little Hallock House east of the current Cich farm garage, the circa 1832 Isaiah Hallock barn and various outbuildings. Konstanty and Adela married in Glen Head, LI in 1912 and started their family in Glen Cove. They moved to Mattituck c. 1920 to work as a farm laborer.

Circa 1931, Konstanty hired two brothers named Zucaski who lived on Oregon Road to build the current house on the footprint of the Isaiah Hallock house (probably to utilize the hand dug well still behind the house and parts of the original foundation.)

Konstanty and Adela had 6 children. Charles (Charlie), Stanley (Stosh), Albertine (Tina), John, Helen, and Ann. Tina and Ann were born in the Little Hallock house. The others were born in Glen Cove, NY.

Soon after Stanley's marriage in 1952, he and his wife moved in and the house was converted into a 2-family dwelling. Adela lived in the three rooms on the west side of the house (Konstanty had died in 1944.) and Stanley's family lived in the east rooms. An addition was put on east of the museum kitchen for a second kitchen and bath. All used the upstairs bedrooms. Both Adela and Stanley's family moved out c. 1960 and the house was rented for a few years.

The house became a field office for Levon Corp. beginning in 1963 and for LILCO beginning in 1973 since it was newest house on KeySpan property. It was during that period that the interior was "modernized" and many original details removed. It was abandoned and vacant after 1980. Hallockville acquired the land and buildings in 1999. The house was in severe disrepair with large holes in back roof. The kitchen floor unusable due to water damage. Hallockville restored the house over a 3 year period from 2003-2006.

Some have thought this was a Sears Catalogue house. However, while Sears certainly sold similar houses, there is no direct evidence this was a catalogue house (Rafters and studs are numbered in catalog kits and there are none in this house) - and the Cichanowicz family insists that it was custom built on site.

The dug well, visible under the low shed in the rear, survives from the Isaiah Hallock house that occupied the site previously. A well like this was bricked from the top down. Water is approximately 70 feet below ground level. Dug wells were used both for bucket operation and were also done for the earliest mechanical pumps, either wind or gasoline driven.

Cichanowicz Farmhouse in 2006

Architectural historians now describe houses such as this as "foursquare" - a style popular during the first three decades of the 20th century. All the typical features are present here: square shape, two-story, hipped (or pyramidal) roof, dormer with hipped roof, symmetrical faÐ"§ade and porch across the entire front. The style allowed a room in each corner, with windows to two sides. It also was the most economical style to build, since a cube encloses the maximum volume of living space with the minimum surface area. Often, as here, the front door opened into one of the main rooms. Sometimes these homes were decorated with colonial or prairie style details. Also notice the one-over-one windows, typical of the period. Shingled exterior was originally unpainted, but had received a full coat of white paint by the 1940's.

As with most farmhouses, almost everyone used the back door. Only the parish priest and

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