S. Berliner, III's sbiii.com Long Island Motor Parkway History Page 1a keywords = Long Island Motor Parkway Vanderbilt toll road limited access highway Horace Harding boulevard automotive auto car truck car history Miller Sempre Vivolo Brentwood

Updated:   05 Nov 2019; 13:20  ET
[Page created 14 Jan 2002; converted 05 Dec 2011;

    original AT&T Worldnet Website begun 30 May 1996.]
Update info on the top on ALL pages for your convenience.

URL:  http://sbiii.com/limphst1.html
[was at "home.att.net/~Berliner-Ultrasonics/limphst1.html"]

S. Berliner, III
Consultant in Ultrasonic Processing
"changing materials with high-intensity sound"

[consultation is on a fee basis]

Technical and Historical Writer, Oral Historian
Popularizer of Science and Technology
Rail, Auto, Air, Ordnance, and Model Enthusiast
Light-weight Linguist, Lay Minister, and Putative Philosopher

note - The vast bulk of my massive Web presence (over 485 pages) had been hosted by AT&T's WorldNet service since 30 May 1996; they dropped WorldNet effective 31 Mar 2010 and I have been scrambling to transfer everything.  Everything's saved but all the links have to be changed, mostly by hand.  See my sbiii.com Transfer Page for any updates on this tedious process.

[Please note that these pages could also have been accessed as URL http://berliner-ultrasonics.home.att.net/lim*.html,
a "vanity" URL (q.v.) that did not require the tilde (~), as was true of ALL of my old pages.}

S. Berliner, III's


History Page 1a

{and these are only thumbnails, at that!}


a.k.a. Vanderbilt Motor Parkway

(and related matters)

(Continuation History Page 1a)

Motor Parkway Logo

Because the Main Page overloaded, please visit Continuation Page 1A, et seq.


note-rt.gif  The index on this page has been truncated (links removed) to save page space; see the LIMP Index on the page preceding the main LIMP page.

On the LIMP History Page:

    - continued, with more photographs.

On the LIMP History Page 0:

  HISTORY OF THE LONG ISLAND MOTOR PARKWAY - continued, with more photographs, and
  List of Toll Lodges and
  List of Toll Gates

On this LIMP History Page 1a:

  HISTORY OF THE LONG ISLAND MOTOR PARKWAY - continued, with more photographs.
  Who's Who (or Was) (moved from LIMP History Page 3 on 14 Jan 2002).

On the LIMP History Page 2:

  HISTORY OF THE LONG ISLAND MOTOR PARKWAY - continued, with more photographs.
  The General Manager's House.
  Sempre Vivolo (Brentwood Toll Lodge).

On the LIMP History Page 3@:

  Motor Parkway Historical Miscellany
  Motor Parkway Auto Tags/Plates

On the LIMP History Page 4:

  Oldest Parkway.
  Nassau County Police Photos (moved from page 2 on 21 Nov 2003).
  LIMPuzzle.   Widening the Parkway.

- - - * - - -

To save space on this page, I refer you to the LIMP Index Page.   new (12 Apr 2017)

The LIMP-Vanderbilt Cup Race page

, et seq.     (balance unindexed to date - please scroll away)

This is yet another (14 Jan 2002) page to cover additional information and photographs of this interesting old highway; see also my Automotive, Chrysler, Dudgeon (really!), Mercedes, and SS and JAGUAR car pages and other related pages.

A Motor Parkway Panel had been convened to keep the LIMP alive in situ, in minds and in museums.  It has now been subsumed into the Long Island Motor Parkway Preservation Society.   new (12 Apr 2017)

There is also a lot of automotive material on my ORDNANCE and HISTORY pages.

Also, if you like automotive history, see the links on the Automotive page.

RoW = Right-of-Way.

William K. Vanderbilt, Jr.
(Courtesy of Northport Public Library)
[Thumbnail image; click on picture for larger image.]

William K. Vanderbilt, Jr.
"Willie K."

- - - * - - -

Vanderbilt Cup Race Disclaimer. - although the Vanderbilt Cup races are of interest, they are NOT the provenance of this site; see Disclaimer, moved main LIMP History page.


History Page 1a

- - - * - - -

Vanderbilt Cup Disclaimer.

Although the Vanderbilt Cup races are of great interest to any Long Island Motor Parkway aficionado, they are NOT the provenance of this site, except when they were run on or across the LIMP.  Links will be provided to sites that do cover these extraordinary races in more depth, IF those so interested will kindly forward the URLs to me.

The disclaimer above notwithstanding, here is a photo from the 1907{?} Vanderbilt Cup race which I am reproducing here, even though it has next-to-nothing to do with the LIMP, but because it totally epitomizes the kind of racing that was done then; big, bruising men driving big, bruising open cars on local streets:

1907 Main St Mineola
(Photo courtesy of R. Valentine, WPHC)
[Thumbnail image; click on picture for larger image.]

This shows an unidentified car blazing southbound over the LIRR Main Line on Main Street in Mineola near the Davenport Press building (now a restaurant, off to the lower right - SE); it is an original Joe Burt, Sr., photo on display at the Williston Park Historical Committee office.  Those rails must have played havoc with those narrow tires!  The turnouts to the LIRR Oyster Bay Branch are immediately to the right (E) and the LIMP bridge over the LIRR Main Line was (or would shortly be) only ¾-mile to the right (E).

Also, Panel Associate Dr. Mark DeSantis has five great action shots of ALCo car #18 with a 584 Cu. In. engine, being driven to victory in the 1910 Vanderbilt Cup Race by Harry Grant, on his site; he believes that the second, third, and fifth photos were taken on the back stretch of the race (I have copied these here from my ALCo Continuation Page 1):



1910 VC - Grant in ALCo 18 1910 VC 18 on curve (a) 1910 VC car 18 on curve (b) 1910 VC ALCo mileage 1910 VC ALCo curve (c)
(1910 Photos courtesy of M. DeSantis - all rights reserved.)
[Thumbnail images - click on the pictures for larger images.]

The fourth picture shows the huge mileage and speed tally board to the right (west) of the officials stand, opposite the grandstand [barely visible on the far left (north)]; here are closeups of the officials stand and the tally board:

1910 VC Off Stand 1910 VC Tally Board
(Details from 1910 photo courtesy of M. DeSantis - all rights reserved.)

That race was run mostly on the old (then-new) 1908 LIMP; the Grant and grandstand stretch shots clearly show the fresh (and novel) Vanderbilt concrete paving; the other three are on local dirt roads.  I asked for Mark's permission to reproduce the photos here.

That perfect segué into Who's Who, on the main LIMP History page, was because the note from Ron Ridolph was on a reproduction of LIMP letterhead:

(moved here from the main LIMP History page on 14 Jan 2002)

Repro of LIMP Letterhead
[Unfortunately, I had to photograph this, not scan it, and it didn't come out well.]

The names are:

W. K. VANDERBILT {no "Jr."!},                HENRY B. ANDERSON,
 PRESIDENT                                                TREASURER
 EMERY L. FERRIS,                             ALFRED J. KIENZLE,
          VICE-PRES.                                        ASST. TREAS. & GENL. MGR.
                                                              ROY C. GASSER,
- - - * - - -

Who's Who on the Motor Parkway

(or Who Was Who)

(moved from LIMP History Page 3 on 14 Jan 2002)

William K. Vanderbilt had a number of close associates with whom he worked to build and run the Motor Parkway.  Perhaps chief among these was Arthur R(ayner). Pardington, who is credited on an historical marker as the engineer who built the Parkway:

Half Hollow Hills Marker
(Photo 28 Apr 2000 by and © 2000 S. Berliner, III - all rights reserved)
[Thumbnail image; click on picture for larger image.]

Historical marker in front of Half Hollow Hills Community Library
(55 Vanderbilt Parkway, Dix Hills, north side,
opposite Half Hollow Hills School)

I forgot who sent me this picture of Arthur Pardington holding a shovel at the groundbreaking ceremony on 06 Jun 1907 (Adcock puts it in 1908) just off Jerusalem Avenue in what is now Levittown:

A. Pardington Breaking Ground

Unfortunately, the marker is wrong!  Pardington was a Vice President.  The Chief Engineeer (1907-1924) was E. G. Williams.

The Long Island Motor Parkway, Inc. was headquartered at 527 Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, with a quirky (by today's standards) telephone number that was the street address!

Their Garden City address had no street number and the telephone number was 952-W GARDEN CITY.

Incidentally, the Petit Trianon's telephone number was 30 RONKONKOMA.

"A. R. Pardington", as "Second Vice-President and General Manager", was authorized by the Finance Committee meeting of 04 Jan 1907, in the office of C. T. Barney* at 66 Broadway, to "execute a lease for desk room at some convenient point in Mineola, the same to be designated as the official headquarters of the Long Island Motor Parkway, Inc."

(thanks to Al Velocci for this tidbit)

For more on A. R. Pardington, see A. R. Pardington on LIMP History page 2.

The principals and staff included (at various times):

William K. Vanderbilt, Jr. (a.k.a. II), President
Jefferson duMont Thompson, Secretary and Treasurer, or, later,
    Henry B. Anderson, Treasurer (also Counsel,
        of the firm of Anderson and Anderson, later
        Anderson, Ferris*, Gasser* and Anderson.
Harry Payne Whitney, 1st Vice President
Arthur R(ayner). Pardington, 1st Vice President and General Manager
    (definitely 2nd V. P. at least in 1907 and 1911)
    ARP was more an investor in the Vanderbilt Cup
            (Motor Cups Holding Company)
        than an active officer of the Parkway.
Emery L. Ferris*, Vice President
Roy C. Gasser*, Secretary
R. C. Watson, Secretary
E. G. Williams, Chief Engineer (1907-1924)
Arthur J. Kienzle@, Assistant Treasurer, Manager, General Manager
    (who lived next door to the Garden City Toll Lodge
      in what was originally the field office - still standing).
        Kienzle was hired as Asst. Treas. in 1908, became Gen. Mgr.
        when ARP left in the LIMP in 1911,
        but retained his (Kienzle's) title as Asst. Treas.
Christian Ernst, last resident Lodgekeeper at Garden City (Clinton Road).
Eric Ericson, last resident Lodgekeeper at Ronkonkoma (Rosevale Avenue).
Arthur H. Myers, Manager, Petit Trianon.

Both Lodgekeepers (among many others) bought their lodges from Vanderbilt for his generous $500 offer.

Mr. Kienzle@ received a brand-new Buick each year from the local Buick dealer with the proviso that he document every action; mileage, fuel, oil, service, etc., thus living up to the original premise of the Parkway being a testing ground for automobiles. (per Bob Miller).

[@ - I had read the name variously as "Kienzley" or "Kiengley" erroneously,
  based on his flourished signature on the tickets reproduced on the previous History pages.]

Here's just such a ticket (from an unattributed Web source), dated "APR 6-'30", "Good for one way trip to Ronkonkoma or one round trip New York to Huntington without privilege to leave and return.", #2201 for one dollar from the "ROCKY HILL ROAD LODGE":

6Apr30 ticket
(over-enlarged; trading off sharpness for legibility)

There were several firms involved in the founding and operation of the Motor Parkway; the Motor Cups Holding Company, the Ridgefield Land Company, and the Lakeville Holding and Land Company; per a letter to the IRS on 06 May 1929, the LIMP was organized to purchase RoW and construct a road from Great Neck to Lake Ronkonkoma.  The Lakeville company was organized to construct a road from Great Neck to New York City (not then completed).  The Ridgefield Land Company was organized to 1.) take title to properties acquired for the Parkway, 2.) construct the road, and 3.) act as an agent for the Lakeville company in the construction of that company's portion of the road.  {Talk about tax dodges and interlocking directorates!}  All real estate held by the Ridgefield company was transferred to the LIMP in 1909 and the LIMP and the Lakeville company advanced over $324,000 to the Ridgefield company to fund construction of the road.

* - It would appear that several persons and firms acted as counsel at various times or had the firm names changes as time went on.

Arthur Pardington was awarded this fantastic sterling silver "Vanderbilt Cup Commission" cigarette case in 1906; it bears a gold and cobalt enameled "AAA" insignia on the cover with a blue sapphire cabochon on the lid, was manufactured in 1906 by "C&C" London, weighs approximately 5 troy oz., and measures 4-5/8" length by 3-3/8" width:

(Photos courtesy of Yesteryears - by permission - all rights reserved)

This case survived and was put up for auction (on 28 Jun 2001) by Yesteryears Auction Gallery, Patchogue, New York, and these photos are reproduced by the gracious permission of the store.  I'd love to know whose initials are on it (possibly Jefferson duMont Thompson's - can anyone verify this authoritatively?).

Now, who was George Vanderbilt, who sponsored the George Vanderbilt Cup race at Roosevelt Raceway in 1936?  Click here.

The Photos of J. J. Conroy

In Sep 2002, J. J. Conroy, who lived up my way in Sea Cliff in the '70s and '80s and who worked in New Hyde Park in the early '70s, wrote from South Carolina that he had done considerable research on the LIMP back then.  He has kindly offered to share quite a trove of information; I wrote that we appear to have a treat in store.  For starters (teasers?), he sent two undocumented photos (now renumbered and resequenced as Conroy01 and 19); well, on 31 Oct 02 I received a big box full of stuff.  In it was a photo envelope with 18 more photos (with all 20 original negatives), a fragile cassette tape of an interview, "Conversations with Vanderbilt Pkwy Eng Williston Park", a thick file of early clippings and such (which will take a lot of sorting - most are from copyrighted newspapers).

I scanned all 18 new photos, added them to the existing two, as identifed by the negatives, and found that they appear to be a consistent walking tour of the LIMP RoW, ca. 1970* or so, from Cunningham Park through Alley Pond Park!

Conroy01 Conroy02
Conroy01 left - Conroy 02 right

Conroy03 Conroy04
Conroy03 left - Conroy 04 right

Conroy05 Conroy06
Conroy05 left - Conroy 06 right

Conroy07 Conroy08
Conroy07 left - Conroy 08 right

Conroy09 Conroy10
Conroy09 left - Conroy 10 right

Conroy11 Conroy12
Conroy11 left - Conroy 12 right

Conroy13 Conroy14
Conroy13 left - Conroy14 right

Conroy15 Conroy16
Conroy15 left - Conroy16 right

Conroy17 Conroy18
Conroy17 left - Conroy18 right

Conroy19 Conroy20
Conroy19 left - Conroy 20 right
(Photos courtesy of J. J. Conroy - all rights reserved)
[Thumbnail images; click on pictures for larger images.]

You can still see the white line in the center on Conroy01, 02, 03, and 05!

I had bet that the photo Conroy-2 (now Conroy19, above left) was taken from Willis Avenue facing west; hoo, boy, was I ever wrong!

I shall refrain from too much more guessing; even though I am quite sure of my ground on a few of the pictures.  The clearing in the distance of 07 is probably the clear area cleared for the Clearview Expressway (is that clear?) which, according to Steve Anderson, was built from 1957 to 1963, and 15-17 are quite clearly the odd little underpass in the SW corner of Alley Pond Park.  I'm asking those Panelists who are expert on the Queens segment to identify these photo locations for us and I'll caption them accordingly.

* - I also goofed badly on the approximate dating; eagle-eyed Panelist Dr. Mark Desantis spotted a 1970-75 Plymouth Valiant "Duster" (or Dodge Dart "Swinger") crossing beyond the bridge on the far right of Conroy06 and the "69" grafitti on the bridge (there's also "'71" there)!  Isn't it amazing how the area has changed in only some 30 years?  Kudos to the NYC Parks Department (note the broken railings on the bridge in Conroy15-17)!

Here's a quick rundown from Panelist and LIMP expert Bob Miller:

  1-6 - along 199 Street to the 73 Avenue bridge.
  6 is at 73 Avenue with Francis Lewis Boulevard in the background.
  7 and 8 are between FLB and the Clearview Expressway.
  9-12 are east of Clearview to Hollis Court Boulevard

(now Hollis Hills Terrace bridge).
  13 and 14 are between Springfield Boulevard and the Alley Pond bridlepath bridge
(ah - so THAT's what that little bridge is!).
  15-17 are on the Alley Pond Park bridlepath bridge (Moses-built).
  18 is at the LIMP bridge over the entrance to athletic fields, west of Winchester Boulevard
(brick-faced by Moses) {visible just N of Union Turnpike - SB,III};
this picture was taken circa 1970, when the Grand Central Parkway bridge
over the LIMP was being widened for the GCP and eastbound approach lanes.
  19 is looking WNW above the Alley Pond Park bridlepath bridge.
  20 is at Springfield Boulevard (Rocky Hill Road) at the tollbooth site.

Thanks, Bob!  Now we'll have to wait for more detailed information from the Queens crew.

Because the Main Page overloaded, please visit Continuation Page 1A, et seq.


  What happens to all this when I DIE or (heaven forfend!) lose interest?  See LEGACY.


See Copyright Notice on primary home page.

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