Archaeological dig underway at Huntington’s historic Peter Crippen house

Peter Crippen
The remnants of the Peter Crippen house in Huntington. Photo credit Sophia Hall

HUNGTINGTON, N.Y. (WCBS 880) — There’s now an archaeological dig happening in Huntington at a local historical house.

The Peter Crippen House is a significant site to the Town of Huntington’s African American history, according to local archaeologist Allison McGovern.

The home was built in the 1600s and Crippen was one of the most prominent members of the African American community, including being the founder of a local church.

McGovern says the home, and backyard, are full of important pieces of history.

“Ceramics that date to the 19th century, which is exactly what we were looking for, some glass. We also found some pieces of corroded metal like nails and things like that. And we're hopeful that we are going to find more,” she tells WCBS 880’s Sophia Hall.

While most of the house has fallen to disarray, with most of the foundation destroyed, there are plans to restore part of it.

“The long-term plan here is to relocate the restored structure, if it's feasible to do so, to serve as a museum dedicated to Huntington's African American history,” said Town of Huntington Supervisor Chad Lupinacci.

According to a town press release, the town board accepted an $8,500 donation from the Manes Peace Prize Foundation to conduct the archaeological study in September 2020. The town then applies for a $4,000 grant from the state to help preserve and relocate the Crippen house, or at least part of it.

The town has not said where it plans to relocate the historic home. The property on which it currently sits is scheduled to become an extra parking lot for the Huntington Wastewater Treatment Plant.

Huntington town officials say the Creek Road, where the house is located, may be renamed to honor Peter Crippen, who died in 1875.

His great-great-great grandson, who lives on Long Island, is helping with information about the house for the archeological dig.

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