Town of Southold

Home » Towns » Suffolk County » Hamptons » Southampton Townships

Southold is recognized for a long history dating back to colonialism. 

The Town of Southold is located in the northeastern tip of Suffolk County, on the north fork of Long Island. The hamlet of Southold is considered by many historians to be the first English settlement on Long Island, founded on 1640. The name Southold is thought to be a misspelling of the name Southwold, a coastal town in the county of Suffolk in England.  

English Puritans from Connecticut settled in Southold under the leadership of Reverend John Youngs. This group purchased the land from a tribe of Lenape Native Americans. Southold was supervised by New Haven under the Connecticut colony.  Settlers wished for the town to be operated as a theocracy, and Connecticut allowed a freedom of religion. The Dutch took control of New York in 1673, and many eastern towns on Long Island refused to submit to the foreign authority.  A family feud between the Duke of York, son of the executed King Charles I, and Connecticut authorities led to Southold being governed by the New York colony after the British takeover in 1674. The harbor at Greenport, which rarely froze over, was a historically important trading, fishing and whaling port.  The expansion of the Long Island Rail Road to Southold made it a popular destination for summer travellers since the late 19th century.  

The 2010 census reveals that the population of Southold approaches 5,900 residents, and the average household annual income falls just short of $50,000. One village and ten hamlets form the Town of Southold.  There is a hamlet by the same name located within the town. This area on the north fork of Long Island is now known for it's numerous wineries, farmstands and local produce.

Villages in the Town of Southold

Hamlets in the Town of Southold

Additional Resources