Bayside in Northport was originally a Methodist summer camp, where thousands gathered for two weeks in late August and early September for preaching, edification, entertainments, and socializing. Many came by steamer or horse and buggy for a day, while others came to stay. The first accommodations were large tents, which evolved into cottages. In August 1876, when 10,000 people are said to have attended camp meetings in the huge outdoor auditorium, there were 278 tents, 70 permanent cottages, and a large new hotel.
Some of the cottages were large, simple structures known as “Society Cottages,” built by specific church congregations. However, the colorful Carpenter Gothic cottages with intricate “gingerbread” trim, such as this one built by Alfred Flood of Waterville, came to dominate Bayside as it developed as a summer resort village. In July 1896, a reporter noted, “The cottages looked nicely in their new and variegated coats of paint. Probably the one that attracts the attention of the visitors more than any other is the Flood cottage.”
The camp meetings ended in 1936, and the Flood cottage on Clinton Avenue no longer stands. Bayside today is a vibrant summer community of residents who share a great sense of pride in the community’s history and continuity.