6. An Island off the Rockaways Mysteriously Disappeared

Map of Hog Island in the Rockaways
Image via Wikimedia Commons

The legendary Hog Island came from nothing, and now is nothing once again. Its origins are as shrouded in mystery as its destruction. Although a New York Times article from December 17th, 1985 (around when the island disappeared) proclaimed that “Hog Island rose in a single night, thirty years ago,” most now believe that the island was formed gradually as currents moved westward depositing sand and gravel.

During its short life, the island was home to a few bath houses and restaurants. But in 1893, a category 2 hurricane known as the “Midnight Storm” heavily damaged the island, and for many years afterwards it was battered by storms until it disappeared, although no one knows exactly when the last bit of the island was reclaimed by the sea that created it.

There are many different theories about how its final end came about. Some say that the 1893 hurricane really did demolish the island in a single night. Others claim that it still functioned as a resort in 1902. Time and history seem to unwind a bit where Hog Island is concerned, and who knows—perhaps maybe it is still out there, hidden in a time warp or wormhole, always just out of reach.