Coming on the heels of a complete restoration of Hempstead’s “Old Town Hall” and refurbishment of its signature clock tower, Supervisor Anthony J. Santino is seeking to make history. As the clock prepares to strike 100 years since original construction, Supervisor Santino is “getting the gears turning” to have Town Hall included in the State and National Registers of Historic Places. Today, the Hempstead Town Board approved the filing of an application for landmark status.
“Punctuated by the recent restoration of the clock tower, Town Hall is an important piece of the history of the Town of Hempstead, which dates back to 1644,” stated Santino. “We are proud of our history in America’s largest township, and we are confident that Town Hall is worthy of recognition in the State and National Registers of Historic Places.”
The clock tower was built in 1918 after an agreement between the Town of Hempstead and the E. Howard Clock Company. The 2016-17 upgrade – which included four new timepieces and hands, a Verdin Master Clock Controller with automatic reset, electrical upgrades, multi-color L.E.D. backlighting and restoration of wood trim and sheet metal – was part of a $2 million rehabilitation project that witnessed the restoration of the entire exterior of the historic Old Town Hall, which is a town landmark. The project included the repointing of brick facades, recasting of deteriorated headers and capstones, reconstruction of the main staircase and replacement of the roof. The structure is a colonial revival style, a popular method of constructing municipal buildings in the time it was built. Additionally, the Old Town Hall houses a stunning historical courtroom, replete with elaborate cast plaster relief as well as restored colonial-style bench seating.
If approved, Hempstead Town Hall would enjoy some impressive company in the State and National Registers of Historic Places, which include Carnegie Hall, St. Patrick’s Cathedral and the Empire State Building, among others.
“From the take-off site of Charles Lindbergh’s 1927 trans-Atlantic flight to the Rock Hall Museum and so many other locations, the Town of Hempstead is chock full of historical landmarks,” concluded Santino. “We are hopeful that Town Hall will become the newest member of the State and National Registers of Historic Places.”