Beaches & Bathing

by Chris Bain

We all know that the Port Washington Peninsula was once known as Cow Neck.  Most of us who grew up here swam in the local waters "back in the day", either at Bar Beach, Manorhaven Beach, Half Moon Beach or even off the back of a friend's boat in Manhasset Bay or Hempstead Harbor.  Here are a few images:

Bar Beach was a hopping place up until the late 1960's, when the quality of the water started to turn sour.  The Clean Water Act of 1972 started to turn that trend around.  Manorhaven Pool, built in the late 1960's was also a huge draw away from the local beaches.

Here, is the famous (some would say infamous) Half Moon Beach, in Sands Point!

In the really, really old days, people went "bathing" down near the site of the present Town Dock, as seen below.

And here's the other wonderfully historic shot.  You are standing on the end of the Town Dock, when it was known as the "Public Dock", before the Town of North Hempstead took it over.  The wooden dock isn't wide, hasn't been expanded toward what is now Louise's, and you are looking back towards Bradley's, the most famous restaraunt in town.  There is no Sunset Park (yet), and the land that now makes up that beautiful park (with the Sousa Bandshell) hasn't been filled in yet.  Boys in their one piece bathing outfits are having fun, just the same as they do today.

The Cow Neck Peninsula Historical Society
336 Port Washington Blvd., Port Washington, NY 11050-4530
(516) 365-9074  .