A hamlet and CDP within the Town of Huntington, Melville sits on the Suffolk side of the Nassau/Suffolk boundary. It has gone through a number of names through its history, originally known to Native Americans as Sunsquams, then by English settlers as Samuel Ketcham’s Valley (so named fo...
A hamlet and CDP within the Town of Huntington, Melville sits on the Suffolk side of the Nassau/Suffolk boundary. It has gone through a number of names through its history, originally known to Native Americans as Sunsquams, then by English settlers as Samuel Ketcham’s Valley (so named for a local resident), followed by Sweet Hollow; it came to its current designation in 1854. Some dispute surrounds the origin of the name, with one explanation citing the abundance of honey bees and the Latin word for honey (“mel” or “millis”) as the inspiration for both Melville and the previous Sweet Hollow, and another claiming the town had been renamed in honor of New York-born novelist Herman Melville (best known for the classic, Moby Dick), who had begun publishing his works nearly a decade prior. In 1909 a trolley line was run through the town, but was shut down after only a decade of use when local farmers complained the noise it produced was scaring their animals.
White Post Farms remains an active farm within the community, growing vegetables, pumpkins, and a large number of flowers. Educational tours are offered to schools, camps, and other organizations to give children a glimpse into a more rural life. A petting zoo is open to visitors and can be used for children’s birthday parties, and White Post’s annual Fall Farm Festival also provides children’s shows and games, pumpkin picking, and hayrides.
Despite the continued success of this farm, Melville has moved on to other endeavors to keep its local economy strong. Numerous Fortune 500 companies have business operations within the town, and the Long Island newspaper Newsday is also published there. Chyron, Nikon, OSI Pharmaceuticals, Sbarro’s, Gentiva Health Services, Arrow Electronics, and a number of other businesses have even made the hamlet home to their headquarters. International camera manufacturer, Canon, has also begun construction of what will become its US headquarters in Melville.
As of the 2010 census, Melville had a total population of 18,985 with 6,908 households and an average of about two and a half persons per home. The median household income was $104,603 with males making $95,742 and females $73,153.