West Babylon’s first one-room schoolhouse was erected in the early 1800s, on South Country Road (Montauk Highway), just east of Great East Neck Road. During the winter of 1836, the beloved poet Walt Whitman taught school in West Babylon.
West Babylon enjoyed the attentions of affluent vacationers who arrived during the height of Babylon’s resort era, and built summer houses bordering Beaver Lake. But, it was middle class families seeking vacation getaways in the 1920s and 1930s that left an indelible mark on the landscape. Many of those summer bungalows eventually became year round homes, establishing the beginnings of neighborhoods that found their peak during the post-World War II population boom. Today, West Babylon is the largest hamlet within the Town of Babylon.
Dutch farmers found the soil of the West Babylon ideal for growing tulips, dahlias, and other flowering bulbs, thus establishing a thriving flower industry. Vast bulb farms, including Van Bourgondien Bros. and Bulk’s Nurseries, adorned the landscape. The windmill image used throughout West Babylon, today, refers not only to the area’s Dutch heritage, but to a towering windmill that stood at Bulk’s Nurseries during the mid-1900s.
Town of Babylon History Museum47 W. Main St.Babylon, NY 11702Ph: (631) 587-3750Email UsHoursMonday - Friday10:00 am - 3:00 pmOctober - MayFirst and Third Saturday of the Month10:00 am - 2:00 pm