Oyster Bay was discovered by the Dutch explorer Adrian Block in 1615. It was the boundary between the Dutch New Amsterdam colony and the English New England Colonies. The English, under Peter Wright, first settled in the area in 1653. The boundary between the Dutch and English was somewhat fluid which led each group having their own main Street, leading to today's non-connecting East Main & West Main.
During the Revolutionary War, Raynham Hall was owned by the patriot Townsend family. It was here, the Major Andre was billeted and Bennedict Arnold's plot to turn over West Point to the British was uncovered.
In the 1880s, the LIRR extended rail service from LocustValley as a means to establish a connection to Boston. On June 21st, 1889, the first LIRR train arrived in Oyster Bay. In the following year, service commenced with the train coaches being loaded onto a ferry for a connection to the New Haven Rairoad at Norwalk CT. Service lasted less than a year.
The first amateur sailing regatta in the country was organized here in 1872.
The oysters that give the bay its name are now the only source of traditionally farmed oysters from Long Island, providing up to 90% of all the oysters harvested in New York State.
Notable Past Residents
Oyster Bay is known for the residence and summer White House of Theodore Roosevelt, Sagamore Hill.
Many well known entertainers spent their youth in this area; among its best known former residents are musician Billy Joel, tennis player John McEnroe, authors Thomas Pynchon and Tracy Kidder, and Sonic Youth guitarist Lee Ranaldo (Pynchon and Ranaldo both attended Oyster Bay High School). A famous current resident is composer John Barry.