Yaphank, New York

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Yaphank is a census-designated place (CDP) in Suffolk County, New York, United States. The population was 5,025 at the 2000 census.

Yaphank is a community in the south part of the Town of Brookhaven. It is served by the Longwood Central School District, except for extreme southwestern Yaphank, where it is served by the South Country Central School District.



In the mid 18th century, a man named John Homan built two mills along Carmen's River, which runs directly through the center of the town. These two mills inspired the first name for the town: Millville. The translator author Mary Louise Booth was born in Millville in 1831. In 1846 a post office was opened in the town, but because there were thirteen other towns named "Millville" in New York State at the time, the town was renamed "Yaphank", from the local Native American word "Yamphanke", meaning "bank of a river".

In 1843 the Long Island Rail Road built a railroad station in Yaphank (still named Millville at the time), and virtually overnight the small mill town became a major commercial center. By 1875, Yaphank had two grist mills, two lumber mills, two blacksmith shops, a printing office, an upholstery shop, a stagecoach line, two physicians, a shoe shop, two wheelwright shops, a meat market, a dressmaker and a general store.

Today, Yaphank is home to about half of those industries. The Grist mills, blacksmith, physician, shoe shop, wheelwright shops, meat markets and the dress makers are long gone although the rail road station is still here along with the general stores.

Today, Yaphank holds three deli's, one pizza shop, a shooting supply company, a skeet range, a bank, and Dawn House & Building Movers - a house moving company.

Yaphank was the home of Camp Upton, which was used as a boot camp in 1917. In 1947, the United States War Department transferred the Camp Upton site to the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission (AEC), and it now serves as the home of Brookhaven National Laboratory. Before the end of World War I, more than 30,000 men received their basic training there. Perhaps the most notable person to have trained at Camp Upton was the songwriter Irving Berlin. It was there he composed the musical comedy revue Yip Yip Yaphank, which had a brief run on Broadway.

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