Vintage Photos: Jones Beach, New Yorkers’ Summer Escape from the City

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With summer around the corner, millions are expected to make a trip to Jones Beach on Long Island, the most visited beach along the East Coast.

Jones Beach State Park officially opened to the public on August 4, 1929 and quickly became a success, but the 10 mile strip of land had to go through many changes first. When Robert Moses, President of the Long Island State Park Commission at the time, first proposed his plan for the park, the land was in no condition to be used by the public. Jones Island was transformed completely in the 1920s as sand was used to bring the island higher above sea level and grass was planted to keep the sand from blowing away. When it finally opened, its popularity caused traffic delays every weekend. The park stood out for its architecture, including an Italianate-style water tower, and recreational activities available for the general public. Opening just as the 1920s were coming to a close, Jones Beach also became a source of relief for many in the coming decade.

Today, Jones Beach is still a popular summer destination but has arguably lost some of its original appeal as many facilities have closed or are in need of repair. While it may be some time before any changes are made, Jones Beach continues to stand out for its unique landscape that can be seen in these photos of its early years.

Photos from the Library of Congress via Old Long Island.

 beach, long island, Summer, vintage photos

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