Reine Duell Bethany - Author and Illustrator
My Blog

Hempstead: An American Story

The story of the Village of Hempstead, Long Island, New York, is the story of much of the United States.
     A boomtown whose prosperity rested partly on minority labor; then a growing equality and that provided opportunity for minorities not found everywhere, then the loss of three economic engines: nearly 6,000 employees working at Mitchel Field airbase, the rise of shopping cneters such as Roosevelt Field, and the loss of centrality as small municipalities surrounding Hempstead began to build up their own downtowns and erect their own high schools.
     Then 50 years of unsuccessful revitalization that addressed a no-long-existent problem instead of the existing ones.
     As I work on fulfilling the role of town historian for the Village of Hempstead, I feel the excitement of at last understanding what on earth HAPPENED to a place that was one The Hub of Long Island.

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