Why "the forefathers of the hamlet" should have called their
little settlement, lying between Sweezy's Mills and Coram, by the
name of Coram Hills, has been a mystery to many of the present
generation. Most of the land is level as an Illinois prairie, and
we can't see why it should be called "Hills." But the roughness in
the western part of the neighborhood passed for hills, with people
born and brought up on level land. Perhaps it was Coram never had
many hills of its own that the name of Coram Hills was
given by the first settlers, who probably came from Coram. Be that
as it may, the present dwellers of these dates consider West Yaphank
more appropriate and call it by the name, but some of our neighbors
in Coram and Middle Island still insist that we live at the Hills.
We don't like a name
that gives a false impression to strangers, but if the one who have
chosen does not suit them, we might change it to Harmony, Brotherly
Love, Amity or something else of like import, to denote the kind of
feeling that prevails here.
West Yaphank is situated on land so high that Fire Island light
can be plainly seen on clear nights. The South Bay is also in sight
from some points. The principal disadvantage of our exalted
position is that we must use cistern water instead of well water.
The advantages are pure air, cool breezes in summer, exemption from
late frosts in spring, and early ones in the fall, and an excellent
place for fruit raising. Little, however, has been raised for
market till recently. Mr. I.G./ Carter, in the Spring of ' 68 set
out 90 grape vines. In '70 he sent out 250 more. He sold seven
bushels, 45 bushels in "74 and about 50 last fall, besides using
them freely in a large family, and giving away freely. Mr. Carter's
well every year, so they pay best when crops are poor elsewhere.
Mr. I./D. Randall has brought land of Mr. Hiram Overton, near
the school house, and set out a pear orchard. In the spring he
expects to set out 1,000 Concord grape vines. Fruit raising for
market is just beginning here. We expect that this will be the "vineland"
of Long Island and that New England will furnish a market for all
the fruit we can spare, unless we conclude to sell nearer home.