The neighborhoods of Sag Harbor Hills, Azurest, and Ninevah (aka “SANS”) together comprise a multi-generational African American summer beach community in Sag Harbor on the South Fork of Long Island. Created, like many other such communities, under conditions of segregation before the Civil Rights Era, these three post-war subdivisions are now some of the very last surviving examples of such communities along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts. Sharply rising tear-down rates (fueled by the second-home real-estate market of the Hamptons), along with other issues, are threatening the SANS community’s social and architectural fabric.
In response, a group of neighborhood volunteers have been working on National Register listing (the area is not a part of Sag Harbor Village’s 19th-century historic district). Based on a cultural resource survey completed earlier this year, the New York SHPO has declared the area NR eligible, primarily for cultural rather than architectural criteria. Now, to complete the NR nomination itself, SANS is looking for help completing formal building descriptions for the 306 mostly mid-20th-century single-family homes. With volunteers from NOMA (National Organization of Minority Architects) they’re planning a field survey push this Columbus Day weekend to get the descriptions written, and they welcome additional volunteers, especially those with experience with NR surveys and/or formal description of post-war vernacular residential architecture. This survey help would be 100% pro-bono, but community members have offered to provide room and board. (Sag Harbor is 95 miles east of NYC. Hampton Jitney provides direct bus service between Manhattan and Sag Harbor. The nearest train station is Bridgehampton on LIRR’s Montauk line.)
We are looking for willing and experienced surveyors for this weekend, there may be other opportunities to contribute later on. If you are interested, please contact Chris Neville at firstname.lastname@example.org